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Venezia S. Lucia

Venezia S. Lucia - external view
This typical head station, the only real access gate to the city of canals, is located right in the heart of the city, in Fondamenta Santa Lucia, and is frequented by an average of 82 thousand persons per day, for a total of around 30 million presences per year; it hosts some 450 trains per day. The public transport system in its vicinity consists solely of “vaporetto” boat-transport lines along the Grand Canal, while the urban and extra-urban road transport lines are concentrated in Piazzale Roma.

History

exterior view of the station in 1935 - photo from FS archives
The project for the construction of Venezia's Santa Lucia station went through a series of upheavals before a definitive solution could be reached.
The architect Angelo Mazzoni was the first person who developed plans for it in 1924 and studied possible solutions for over a decade. In 1934 a design competition was launched for the railway station’s construction: it was won by the architect Virgilio Vallot, whose project remained suspended until 1936, when it was decided to entrust jointly to Mazzoni and Vallot the construction of the travellers’ building front block, which continued until 1943, and the redesigning of the railway facilities building to Mazzoni. The final solution was completed after the second world war, on the basis of a project drafted by the architect Paolo Perilli.

Present situation

view of the ticket hall
Venezia Santa Lucia consists of several levels:
• a basement floor occupied by technical rooms, most of which are unused due to inadequate height and high humidity;
• the ground floor, at track level, consisting of the Travellers’ Building, the Arrivals Wing and the Departures Wing. The Travellers’ Building houses commercial activities and railway services for passengers, while the two lateral wings are dedicated to railway service activities, with the exception of the bathrooms and left-luggage office;
• the mezzanine floor in the Travellers’ Building is used to house the restaurant changing rooms;
• the upper storeys are occupied by railway offices and accomodation.

In their present state, the architectural elements of the complex are in need of restoration and rehabilitation, the lighting and signs systems are inadequate and the various alteration works carried out over the years have impaired the image and the original quality of the buildings.

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