Educational // What’s under here?

In Venice, like in any city, the water and gas pipes, the electrical power and telephone lines must run under the paving. When a construction site opens, it provides the opportunity for upgrading these utility grids, rationalizing their plan, replacing older pipes, moving the overhead wires for public street lighting underground, replacing or adding electrical cables, laying the new optical fiber cable grid. A new fresh-water fire-fighting system is also being installed: it causes less damage to buildings than the salt water drawn from canals which has been used until now.

A rio terĂ  may be totally filled (in this case there is no more water circulation) or partially filled (in this case a channel remains open under the paving). In the latter case, it is important to periodically dredge the channels of the sludge and sediment that accumulate to prevent it from becoming obstructed. To do so, in many cases a new non-invasive avant-garde methodology is used: an opening in the vault of the underground channel allows special machines to activate a pump that sucks up the sludge into a tank.

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