Due to market globalization, the maritime transport sector is serving growing traffic flows with ULCVs of 18.000 Teu and beyond. But mega ships call for mega ports able to handle mega cargoes. In China mega cargoes can be handled by logistic chains based on few bundling and unbundling points, and large operation yards in huge ports; in Europe the situation is totally different. Here ULCVs have to call more ports because of their limited operative capacity (either due to limited nautical accessibility, or lack of operational yards and/or lack of forwarding capacity) or to use barges to forward mega cargoes to mega ships (like in Rotterdam). Mega-ships require a great ability to manage flows of cargo to/from a port to avoid congestion on the port areas and beyond them. This is particularly true for those ports embedded and surrounded by urban areas, as it happens in many medium size European ports. To overcome this limit and allow ULCVs to call its quays, Venice has conceived a new port system, well suited to accommodate any ultra large container vessel: The Venice Offshore Onshore Port System (VOOPS). The VOOPS offers 22 mt depth of nautical accessibility for the ULCVs, with handling and storage capacity up to 3 million TEUs, 2000 hectares of port areas, efficient and flexible links to more onshore destination and core roads and rails of the European transport network. Therefore the VOOPS represents the missing link between massive global trade, efficient bundling and unbundling of mega cargoes and small scale European ports.
Stefano Bonaldo was born in the 1975. He got a first degree in Economics from the Ca’Foscari University of Venice and a MA in Development Economics from the Sussex University. Before joining the Venice Port Authority in 2006, he worked as researcher at the Venice International University and at the Ca’Foscari University focusing on innovation, local economic development and internationalization. At the Venice Port Authority he works as economist, focusing mainly on strategic planning, port development and international economics.