In Venice, High-Tech Tracking of Tourists Stirs Alarm
As the pandemic chased away visitors, some Venetians allowed themselves to dream of a different city — one that belonged as much to them as to the tourists who crowd them out of their stone piazzas, cobblestone alleyways and even their apartments.
But now, the city’s mayor is taking crowd control to a new level, pushing high-tech solutions that alarm even many of those who have long campaigned for a Venice for Venetians.
The city’s leaders are acquiring the cellphone data of unwitting tourists and using hundreds of surveillance cameras to monitor visitors and prevent crowding. Next summer, they plan to install long-debated gates at key entry points; visitors coming only for the day will have to book ahead and pay a fee to enter. If too many people want to come, some will be turned away.