Venice, Italy: 'The Floating City'
Venice's Controversial Inflatable Floodgates Save City for the Second Time
10-19-20, Smithsonian -- The city of Venice declared a state of emergency when it experienced its worst floods in 50 years. This time, the high tide could have wreaked havoc on the small island, but the barrier system of 78 floodgates—known as Mose [named after Bible's Old Testament 'MOSES'] — successfully kept Venice's winding alleyways and historic squares clear. The barriers are designed to stay at the bottom of the lagoon until they are activated, at which point they fill with air and then rise to the surface.
10-19-20, The Guardian -- Venice, Italy began in the 5th century AD and is known as the ‘Floating City’ as it consists of 118 small islands connected by numerous canals and bridges. The buildings were not built directly on the islands; they were built on wooden platforms that were supported by wooden stakes driven into the ground.
On October 3, 2020 Venice’s new MOSE inflatable barrier system protected the city for the first time from high tides and severe flooding by blocking the water from surging into the lagoon and over the island. They shielded Venice from a 4.6-foot tide that could have flooded half the city.
The large yellow inflated walls rise from bottom and seal off three of the lagoon’s inlets, shielding the island from high tides. The Architect’s Newspaper reports that the barriers can handle floods of up to ten feet. So far the success of the new floodgates still have some saying they aren't a sustainable solution and that it could have serious environmental ramifications. They contend that when the barriers rise, they seal off the lagoon from the rest of the ocean, turning a free-flowing channel into a closed-off swamp and this barrier will deplete the water’s oxygen levels and prevent pollution from flowing out of the channels. More here And from Smithsonian here
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