To cap off our first full week in Italy, our group took a day trip to Venice. We left for Venice by train and arrived in shortly over an hour. Venice is unlike any other city in the world, giving that it was built on a series of connected islands. Specifically, the city is a series of 120 connected islands and 200 natural canals. Each bridge connects one island to another. Initially the aristocrats of Venice were merchants who were wealthy and powerful. Many of them were bankers who brought a great deal of business in the city, thus creating a global trade port for the businesses of Italy to use when trading on water. As Venice was established as a major business port in Italy, this allowed people from across the globe to explore the city and then helped generate a thriving tourist industry. The city is so unique that millions of tourists will visit it each year to see the Gondolas, canals, and architecture. Within the city, there is San Marco Square which was the main attraction of the city. The Square has a gorgeous church as the focus of it, and the rest of the buildings complement the design of the church well. This area was by far the most crowded part of the city that I came across and pumped a certain energy into the area around it.
Though the city is gorgeous in its own right, it’s wildly impractical for its residents. For starters, the city is incredibly expensive to live in. Real estate prices and astronomical and rent is also high. Only a select few residents can afford these high real estate prices, greatly limiting the size of the market. Furthermore, buildings within the city are incredibly limited as to what they can do with regards to renovating the exterior of their buildings. They are free to renovate the interior on their space but the changes that they can make to the outside are minimal. This regulation limits the owner of the property in what they can do to enhance the exterior of their property. Another property inconvenience is the issue of flooding during high tides season. The buildings are generally made out of bricks that are light, flexible and elastic at least at their base, and this structure allows the buildings to handle the regular tides of the canals but high tides often created issues. These floods can ruin the interiors of properties and create a liability for the owners. With regards to Venetian lifestyle, there are numerous challenges that come with the geographical climate of Venice. One of these difficulties is the lack of viable options of transportation to get around the city. You’re only options are being wealthy and owning a boat, renting a water taxi, or walking around the city. There are very few cars and public transportation options for citizens in the city. Compared to a revalue city with cars, busses, uber, and metros, Venice’s options are limited at best. Furthermore, many of the goods around the city have a small increase in price due to the transportation cost raising the overall price of the good.
With regards to the Global and National Environment of Venice, it remains in a unique position. Obviously the city is not practical or an affordable destination as a permanent residence for the majority of Italian citizens. The city’s tourist industry will continue to succeed as long as the city stays afloat. As the city’s infrastructure continues to age, property owners are more likely to run into issues of flooding in the buildings as high tide season hits and bricks continue to age in the waters along with stronger currents of the canal. The city will also have to account for the issue that it is slowly sinking each year, this does not pose much of an immediate threat but it would be wise if the city opted to invest in research to figure out a way to modernize the infrastructure while keeping the integrity of the city. It will be interesting to see if water levels continue to rise during high tide season with increased global temps, thus creating more cases of flooding. The city needs to continue to focus on being a tourist location and this will prop up their economy while they confront the problems in the infrastructure. The process of changing will be long and slow but worth it in the end to prolong the success of the city.