One city has set the standard for coping with flooded streets. And it’s not Charleston.
Venice is widely considered one of the wonders of the world because of its canals that serve as thoroughfares.
But as Charleston is seeing improvements to the Crosstown and funding has been found to address its flooding problems, new satellite measurements reveal that Venice is again losing its battle against the sea. Millimeter by millimeter.
Previous studies showed that Venice had all but stopped sinking.
Not now. Yehuda Bock, a research geodesist at the University of California, San Diego, discovered that the city is sinking one to two millimeters a year. In addition, the Adriatic is rising.
He concludes that Venice could sink up to 3.2 inches by 2032. It sank 4.72 inches in the 20th century.
That means Venice will likely be using barriers to keep the water at bay up to 200 days a year. Long term, plans are to lift Venice by 3.93 inches by pumping seawater into the city’s subsoil.
Charlestonians, with our own sea-level rise on the horizon, can learn from a city with a longer history of “sinking feelings.” But don’t expect gondolas anytime soon — maybe never on the Crosstown.