Venice installed cameras to monitor tourist fluxes

18 September 2021 Last updated at05:45 GMT

Italy - This camera system can track the direction of fluxes of tourists, even their moving speed.

This is considered a solution to control and to avoid the overcrowding tourist load, together with other policies that have been applied such as charging fees, requiring reservations, and limiting the number of visitors entering the city.

Gondola boat rowing in Venice

A wonderful boat trip in along zig-zag canals of Venice

These 468 cameras, together with optical sensors and mobile phone tracking systems can distinguish visitor groups from locals so that the local authority can analyze the situation, work out and offer proper solutions at certain times.

A snapshot of the city’s density will be taken and sent to the local authority every 15 minutes, showing how many gondolas are sailing on the canal. By cameras, they also know which boats exceed the allowed speed and whether the canal water reaches a dangerous level.

Luigi Brugnaro, the mayor of Venice, said that the aim of the new policies is to make tourism more sustainable in this beautiful but small city which receives an estimated number of 25 million visitors a year.

The privacy of visitors will be guaranteed and the data obtained from the tracking system will be anonymized. “Negative feedback, even protests, and lawsuits is something inevitable, he admitted. However, this method is to control the number of visitors and to make sure proper behavior from visitors as well”, Brugnaro made it clear.
"There will be conditions to get bookings and discounts. You can't just wear a swimsuit, get in Venice and jump into the canal from bridges or be drunk and staggering around. We need mutual respect for both visitors and the city”, he said.

Venice city - Italy

Venice, the paradise of colors and arts

These new policy causes quite a few negative comments from visitors. 
"I felt like something was wrong when I heard that I needed to pay to enter Venice. I thought it was a new way for them to make more money", said Marc Schieber, a visitor from Germany.

However, from the other point of view, Stefano Verratti, a resident of the city, was quite supportive of these policies. "I've lived here for 30 years and the city used to be very different. Nowadays, many tourists rush to Venice just to buy a kebab, take a quick selfie on the Rialto Bridge then go away. I don't know if they really enjoy this city," he said.

By Reuters