Port Management Plan Report - 1965


Chronological evolution of the Port of Venice’s structural organization with reference to industrial plants


Gateways to the Port of Venice from the sea

The Venice lagoon covers a total surface of Ha. 55,000 and is served by three port entrances: S. Nicolò di Lido, Malamocco, Chioggia, which, in turn, are dependent on three basins, operating under water regime, separated by recognizable divides.

In former times, the majority of maritime traffic went through the port entrance of Malamocco, favoured by deeper natural sea beds, so much so that Napoleon, intending to restore the role of Venice as a primary naval base, financed the study of its seaside location, completed by the construction of flood barriers during the 1839-1872 period.

However, since the port entrance of Malamocco was connected to Venice by a canal which was quite hard to maintain, with the trades and the size of freight ships progressively increasing, it was agreed to directly connect Venice to the sea by adequately restructuring the port entrance of S. Nicolò di Lido, during the 1882-1910 period, while the new "Marittima" cruise terminal was being built. All the sea traffic from and to Venice was eventually moved from Malamocco to S.Nicolò di Lido.

The building of the Marghera industrial port

The old industrial zone of Porto Marghera (the first industrial zone) takes its origins from the Management Plan of 30.10.1925 and from the convention of 18.8.1926, under which the work performance was contracted out to the Corporation of the Industrial Port of Venice.

In 1946, when the contract between State, Municipality and the contracting Company was terminated, the areas of the first zone were put to use, on a surface of approximately 550 Ha., divided into oil, industrial and commercial sectors. The Port Management Plan of 1925 however provided for the enlargement of the zone (the second industrial zone) to cover Fusina, on an area of approximately 1000 Ha., using approximately 800 Ha. for industrial purposes. The State (through the Civil Engineering Department for Maritime Works) and the local Venetian Authorities, together under the Consortium for the development of the port and the industrial zone of Venice-Marghera, joined forces to build the second industrial zone, on the basis of the management plan of 27 August 1953 and its alterations of 6.6.1956, prepared by the Civil Engineering Department for Maritime Works, for all and any effects replacing the Management Plan of 30.10.1925.

While the Ministry of Public Works financed the excavation of the navigation canals, the Consortium completed the excavations of the canals and the building of roads and railways within the zone. Under the project of 1953 the Civil Engineering Department for Maritime Works was proposing the excavation of a new navigation canal from Porto Marghera to the port entrance of Malamocco to detour sea traffic from the Venice City Centre, with the creation of an oil port on the southern edge of the second zone. Such concept remained the milestone of the following projects of the Civil Engineering Department of 1956, of 1961 and of 1962, under which, tending to shift the oil port increasingly southward, within the lagoon basin of Malamocco, the Malamocco-Marghera canal project follows different routes and increases in size to allow for unloading of large oil tankers at the Port of Venice.

Under law of 2.3.1963, which incorporated the current "Mandatory consortium for the new enlargement of the port and of the industrial zone of Venice-Marghera", an additional expansion area of the port and of the industrial zone of Venice-Marghera (the third industrial zone) was identified, obliging the Consortium to prepare a new General Management Plan.

Plan preparation criteria

The incorporating law entrusts the Consortium with the task to prepare the General Management Plan of the area, as well as the general plans and related executive designs of the works required to implement the law and the programmes for the use of the area. The projects are approved by Decree of the Ministry of Public Works, after hearing the Higher Council and the Water Authority (concerning the safeguard of the Lagoon).

Therefore, the Board of Directors of the Consortium appointed an ad-hoc Commission made up of Directors: Dott. W. Dorigo (Chair), Cav. C. Ballarin, Ing. V. Baruscotto, Ing. G.Casadoro, Ing. G. Gusso, Ing. M. Marcantoni, Ing. F. Pagnin, Ing. A. Toniolo, Rag. S. Fabbro and the Consortium General Director Ing. I. Perruccio, to work on the preparation of the General Management Plan. First, the Commission examined studies that had already been performed by others, both on cost-effectiveness and on the potentials for industrialization of the Region, and on the infrastructures designed at a provincial level and, finally, on the Lagoon situation, focusing then on qualifying and quantifying the preliminary programming and sizing elements of the enlargement of Porto-Marghera.

The research covered the following points:

a) identification of the role which the Porto-Marghera production system (both the existing and scheduled plants) may play within the framework of industrial development of the Region;

b) identification of the most appropriate mix of product and technological categories to be accomplished by establishing new businesses in the third zone;

c) appraisal of the evolution of the Port traffic volume, according to the main identifiable characteristics in product category sectors, origins and destinations, means of loading, unloading and transport.

During the Commission's work, many consultations with local stakeholders were held, with representatives of the Municipalities of Venice and Mira, the Province of Venice, the National Roads Authority, the I.C.M.C., the Italian State Railways, the Development Consortia, the Civil Engineering Department, the Harbourmaster's Office, the Port Pilots and the Civil Engineering Department for Maritime Works.

The Commission received advice from the Director of the Maritime Buildings Institute of the University of Padua, Prof.Ing. Guido Ferro, and also examined other studies, research and projects of technical consulting Institutes and Firms.

The Consortium’s Board of Directors, after broadly and diligently examining and discussing the Commission's paper, resolved on 7.7.1964 to adopt the General Management Plan, which was approved by the Higher Council of Public Works, held during the General Assembly of 12.3.1965.