Associazione Piazza San Marco
October 18, 2012


The Minister for Culture Lorenzo Ornaghi has just signed a directive relating to decorum, soon to be published in the Gazzetta Ufficiale, aimed at reinforcing protective measures in public areas of special archaeological, historical, artistic, architectural and landscape interest in the proximity of monuments with particularly high tourist flows. The directive, which will take effect throughout Italy, gives directions to the appropriate offices (the superintendencies) for clamping down on itinerant and permanent commercial and craft activities in such areas, and any others not compatible with the needs of safeguarding the cultural heritage, particularly relating to the need to ensure respect for the monumental complexes. The superintendencies, with the coordination of the regional directors, will thus ask the local bodies concerned to identify areas where commercial trading is to be forbidden or subject to conditions, as expressed in the minister’s note. It seems obvious that St Mark’s Square and the entire surrounding area could be covered by this directive (the conditional is necessary, considering the widespread use of exceptions in Italy and especially Venice), thus imposing a general reordering of the area, regulation of the types of goods offered for sale and a greater effort being made to counter unauthorised trading.