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Travel Venice may put glass wall around St. Mark's Basilica to curb future flood damage

03:50  28 january  2020
03:50  28 january  2020 Source:   foxnews.com

Video shows tourists and locals wading through thigh-deep water in Venice during its worst flooding in more than 50 years

  Video shows tourists and locals wading through thigh-deep water in Venice during its worst flooding in more than 50 years The mayor of Venice attributed this year's severe flooding to climate change in a tweet and said a state of emergency will be declared on Wednesday.It is currently high-water season in Venice, where rainfall causes parts of the canal-city to flood every year, however this year's flooding has been particularly severe.

Saint Mark ' s Basilica was flooded in mid-November. The adjacent piazza was also submerged in three feet of water. (Photo by Elisa Lingria/Xinhua via Getty Images). Officials with the basilica now say they believe a glass wall would stop future floodwaters from reaching the basilica — and stop history from repeating itself. The adjacent Saint Mark ’ s Basilica was flooded for the sixth time in 1,200 years — but the fourth in the last 20, according to Reuters. That month the tourist mecca was inundated by the second-highest levels of flooding ever recorded, following a flood in 1966.

Officials have warned that St Mark ' s basilica may not be able to withstand a repeat of the damage caused during record flooding in November. A 1.2 metre (four foot) high glass barrier has been suggested as a way to protect the world-famous monument and its priceless mosaics from the acqua alta, or tidal flooding , which happens regularly in the lagoon city. The basilica 's famous coloured marble and gold-leaf mosaics were swamped with sewage and the crypt left under a metre of corrosive salt water during the record flooding , which peaked at 1.87 metres (six feet) on 12 November 2019.

Officials in the city of Venice have proposed a plan to build a meter-high glass wall around St. Mark’s Basilica to prevent future flooding from damaging the 11th century building and the crypt beneath it.

a man standing in front of a building: Water levels have reached 6.14 feet in Venice, Italy, the second-highest level ever recorded in the city. Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and his cabinet are set to approve a decree declaring Venice to be in a state of emergency.© FoxNews.com Water levels have reached 6.14 feet in Venice, Italy, the second-highest level ever recorded in the city. Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and his cabinet are set to approve a decree declaring Venice to be in a state of emergency.

The historic basilica, which sits at one of the lowest points of the city, is still suffering the effects of record flooding in November 2019, when the waters entered the crypt, damaged mosaics and exposed the artwork and the building itself to saltwater corrosion.

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Officials in Venice have proposed a plan to build a 1.2m- glass wall around the historic St Mark ’ s Basilica to protect it and the crypt beneath the church from future flooding . The city has been increasingly struggling with flooding and in November 2019 Venice experienced severe floods which ‘entered the crypt, damaged mosaics and exposed the artwork and the building itself to saltwater corrosion’, according to Fox News. Saint Mark ’ s Basilica has been flooded six times in its existence and four of those floods have occurred in the last 20 years, according to Reuters.

The city of Venice is considering building a four-foot glass wall to protect the historic St . Mark ’ s basilica from future flooding . The plan, which Italian newspaper La Repubblica reported has already been approved by city officials would hopefully protect the church from erosion, similar to what it experienced in November when floods caused an estimated .5 million in damage to the cathedral. The glass walls would be installed in the place of current iron railings that keep visitors from the basilica . Once a more permanent solution can be found, the glass could easily be removed.

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"Venice is on its knees," Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said on Twitter at the time. "St. Mark's Basilica has sustained serious damage like the entire city and its islands."

Officials with the basilica now say they believe a glass wall would stop future floodwaters from reaching the basilica — and stop history from repeating itself.

“The barrier is essential and feasible and we aim to get in place by November, when we fear that high water will return,” said Pierpaolo Campostrini, a basilica official, according to The Times of London.

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Venice is considering putting protective glass around St . Mark ’ s Basilica to prevent future flooding . According to the officials of the city, they are working to build a glass wall that would stop floodwaters from reaching St . Mark ’ s Basilica and prevent history from repeating itself. According to a Basilica official, Pierpaolo Campostrini, the barrier is essential and an excellent option for preventing damage and is planned to be in place by November when the high waters will return one more time.

Venice may put glass wall around st . mark ' s basilica to curb future flood damage . "The test went well," the superintendent of public works Cinzia Zincone told ANSA. Flooding in Venice is caused by a combination of rising sea levels and high tides from climate change as well as land subsidence that has caused the ground level of the city to sink. Click here for the fox news app. The major storm system that swept across Europe spawned devastating flooding in the mountains regions of France and Italy, killing two with eight still missing.

As proposed, the glass partitions would stand at just over a meter, and extend for about 150 meters around the perimeter, at a distance of about two meters away from the basilica itself. Much of the glass wall would also replace iron railings that are already in place to keep tourists from getting too close to the façade, Campostrini told Rome’s La Repubblica.

Campostrini added that engineers with the Stazione Sperimentale del Vetro (Experimental Station for Glass) have already consulted on the type of glass needed to withstand flooding.

The project is expected to cost around 3.5 million euro, or $3.84 million.

“The project is detailed and convincing for us, and we look forward to hearing the opinion of the institutions now, to discuss and perhaps make the suggested changes,” Campostrini said, per La Repubblica.

In 2021, the city also hopes to finally implement its Mose project, a large-scale system for preventing the flooding of the city via large barriers that would protect off the Venetian Lagoon from tidal surges like the one seen in November.

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Man swims across St . Mark ’ s square as Venice hit with 2nd highest tide in history – Nov 13, 2019. Workers last week were removing the crypt’s marble flooring, which lies 20 centimeters (eight inches) below sea level, to observe whether there are indeed cracks allowing water to infiltrate. It may seem crazy to a modern eye that such a precious Basilica was established at Venice ’s lowest point. The piazza outside floods at 80 centimeters ( around 30 inches), and water passes the narthex into the church at 88 centimeters (reinforced from a previous 65 centimeters), floods the Zen Chapel at 1.2

Venice may put glass wall around St . Mark ' s Basilica to curb future flood Venice will spy on The city of Venice is considering building a four-foot glass wall to protect the historic St . Mark ’ s Family building retaining wall around home to protect it from flooding . A family started building a

Campostrini said, however, that the glass walls would still be necessary, as Venetian officials would only activate the Mose barriers when the flooding reaches a height of 110 centimeters — or 25 centimeters higher than the level at which the crypt begins flooding.

The proposal is currently awaiting approval from the city's cultural affairs office.

Back in November, the Piazza San Marco, directly adjacent to the basilica, was submerged in more than three feet of water. The adjacent Saint Mark’s Basilica was flooded for the sixth time in 1,200 years — but the fourth in the last 20, according to Reuters.

That month the tourist mecca was inundated by the second-highest levels of flooding ever recorded, following a flood in 1966.

Fox News' Travis Fedschun and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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