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Mayor orders stop of traffic

Smog emergency in Milan

Elisabeth Lang, eTN Italy  Dec 09, 2011

ITALY (eTN) - Guiliano Pisapia, Milan’s Lord Mayor, confirmed in his official statement yesterday, a stop of traffic stop on Friday and Saturday, December 9 and 10, 2011.

The data held by the junta "indicate the continuation of the emergency situation that is at the base, including legal ordinances.

In addition to the expected traffic jam and closed schools for Friday, December 9, and Saturday, December 10, there is a special plan to wash the streets.

Also confirmed is the blocking of diesel vehicles euro3, the extraordinary opening of stores for up to 24 hours, and measures for the reduction of one degree of warming as stated in an offical statement.

It is the first time that a smog alarm in Milan is bringing the city to a standstill during the weekdays. Normally, these measurements have been applied on Sundays, when one could see
people coming on horses into town, or on roller skates, while police was controlling the living quarters where families were gathering on bikes and afraid to leave them when visiting
parents for a Sunday lunch.

An improvement in the weather condition is said to be coming on Tuesday, but that is not enough. Drastic measurements need to be taken and shopkeepers are protesting as the entire circulation in Milan will come to an standstill.

On Friday, schools will remain closed to prevent further pollution caused by heating. While in Milanese households, the avarage temperature is going to be reduced by at least
one point (in Italy most heating systems are regulated by law).

In his speech, Mayor Pisapia had also apologized to the citizens for the inconvenience that the stop of the cars for two days will bring.

"Forgive me if you force her to spend a few days 'walk[ing]' he said,"I do not sleep at night and reflect these days," the Mayor said in his speech.

A few hours before, the Mayor had shown it may be possible for the city to revoke the suspension of all traffic, said Corriere della Sera.

On Thursday, December 8, is a big celebration for the holy Patron San Ambrogio of Milan (a holiday in Milan only). Milan is facing a long weekend of austerity and frustrated Christmas shoppers as well. Travelers should be aware of this.

A alternative solution for Christmas shoppers could be Turin - easy to reach in only 50 minutes from Milan by the new fast train, Frecciarossa - fantastically illuminated with a wonderful Baroque Center and greatshopping... and no smog.

Smog emergency in Milan
Photo © Elisabeth Lang

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