Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Cat Rides the New People Mover

(Venice, Italy) This morning I took a ride on our nifty new People Mover which boasts that it can take you from Piazzale Roma to Tronchetto in 3 minutes -- give or take. In fact, the entire boast is that it runs every 7 minutes, from 7 to 23:00, (11:00pm) and gets you there in 3. And you know what? It really does, give or take a minute, depending on the ride. It took 4 minutes to get back, but that's still pretty good. The track it rides on looks cool, sort of Neo Art Deco. (That image you see is by Luke Band (C) Copyright Reserved)

Tronchetto is basically a huge parking terminal, and before the People Mover, you had to take a boat, bus or walk to get to Piazzale Roma, which is the final place you can arrive by car to reach Venice proper before you are stopped by the water. Scoring a parking space in Piazzale Roma was always difficult and expensive.

With this new People Mover, however, you can park your car at Tronchetto, where it is cheaper (plus you can shave off some drive-time, which often consists of a bumper-to-bumper line of cars ) and then spend one euro to reach Piazzale Roma, or 15 euro for a monthly pass. It makes one stop at Stazione Marittima, or the port, where, apparently they are going to build yet another parking lot.

To experience more of the New World Venice, when you arrive at Piazzale Roma, you can walk over the new Fourth Bridge, officially known as the Ponte della Costituzione (even though Wikipedia says everyone calls it the Calatrava Bridge, I, and many other people still call it the Fourth Bridge.) From Wikipedia:

The Ponte della Costituzione (EnglishConstitution Bridge) is the fourth bridge over the Grand Canal in VeniceItaly. It was designed by Santiago Calatrava, and was moved into place in 2007 (connecting Stazione di Santa Lucia to Piazzale Roma), amid protest by politicians and the general public. The bridge was installed in 2008 and opened to the public on the night of September 11, 2008. The bridge was known as Quarto Ponte sul Canal Grande before the official name was adopted to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Italian constitution in 2008.[2] Tourists and locals in Venice now refer to it as the Calatrava Bridge (ItalianPonte di Calatrava a Venezia).[3]  

(The Fourth Bridge looks kind of Neo Art Deco, too:)

We even have new vaporetto terminals popping up all over town, also in the same style. There is one on The Lido, one over by Harry's Bar and one down by Arsenale. They are huge compared to the old vaporetto stops, and again, sort of sleek Neo Art Deco. I can't find a good photo of the new terminals, that is how new they are:)

Here in Venice, change is usually regarded with suspicion. We have a saying, "Com' era, Dov' era," which means"As it was, where it was." So, if a building goes down, as it did when La Fenice burned, the rule is that it must go back as closely as possible to how it was before. 

None of these new projects are breaking that rule because they are going up in places where nothing existed before. HHHhhhhmmmm. I wonder if, in the future, they will be concerned about duplicating the old People Mover "as it was, where it was," or restoring the Old Fourth Bridge built way back in 2009.

Ciao from Venice,
Venetian Cat - The Venice Blog


  1. Good Idea!
    Being electric, it will contribute to Ventian required silence.

    Nice Blog!
    Jon, Bilbao Spain.

  2. One of the funniest things of the People Mover is, in my opinion, its name!
    It wouldn't have been cool to call it "movimentatore di persone" as the direct translation in Italian would be. So they named it in English and all sounds cool.
    But I'm wondering, does it sound cool for you, being an English native speaker?
    I think many things we use to say in English would sound just stupid if we would say plainly in our language.
    Ciao and keep up the good work!

  3. Hey, Tom! I always love the way your mind works. The "People Mover" is a perfect name for the newest method of transportation here in the Magic Kingdom. The first PeopleMover was created in 1967 in Disneyland, also known as the Magic Kingdom:) But, as we all know, Venice was the Magic Kingdom long before Disneyland existed. Therefore, it is only fitting that we call the new tram a "People Mover," especially because the PeopleMover in Disneyland no longer exists today. Yeah. I think it's cool. It's sort of like an homage to Disney, who is one of my heroes, and it brings the PeopleMover back alive.


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