Big cruise ships visiting Venice to be re-routed

Posted: Updated:
(AP Photo/Andrew Medichini). FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2014 file photo a cruise ship transits in the Giudecca canal in front of St. Mark's Square, in Venice, Italy. The Italian government and Venice officials on Wednesday Nov. 8, 2017 reached an agreeme... (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini). FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2014 file photo a cruise ship transits in the Giudecca canal in front of St. Mark's Square, in Venice, Italy. The Italian government and Venice officials on Wednesday Nov. 8, 2017 reached an agreeme...
(AP Photo/Andrew Medichini). FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2014 file photo a cruise ship transits in the Giudecca canal, in Venice, Italy. The Italian government and Venice officials on Wednesday Nov. 8, 2017 reached an agreement on a plan to block giant cr... (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini). FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2014 file photo a cruise ship transits in the Giudecca canal, in Venice, Italy. The Italian government and Venice officials on Wednesday Nov. 8, 2017 reached an agreement on a plan to block giant cr...
(AP Photo/Andrew Medichini). FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2014 file photo a cruise ship transits in the Giudecca canal, in Venice, Italy. The Italian government and Venice officials on Wednesday Nov. 8, 2017 reached an agreement on a plan to block giant cr... (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini). FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2014 file photo a cruise ship transits in the Giudecca canal, in Venice, Italy. The Italian government and Venice officials on Wednesday Nov. 8, 2017 reached an agreement on a plan to block giant cr...

ROME (AP) - The Italian government and Venice officials have agreed on a plan to block giant cruise ships from steaming past the lagoon city's iconic St. Mark's Square and instead re-route them to a nearby industrial port.

The agreement reached Tuesday, the latest in a years-long debate and still subject to final details, seeks to balance the environmental concerns of Venice's delicate ecosystem with tourism and maritime jobs.

Transport Minister Graziano Delrio said the plan, to be phased in over three-five years, calls for cruise ships over 55,000 tons to dock at the mainland's Marghera port and avoid transiting through the Giudecca canal, one of the main waterways through Venice that empties into the St. Mark's basin.

Environmental groups rejected it since it still allows polluting cruise ships to enter Venice's lagoon.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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