Vicenza, July 2 - The governor of the region around Venice asked French fashion mogul Pierre Cardin to reconsider backing out of a two-billion-euro plan to build a futuristic high-rise overlooking the lagoon city on Tuesday. "Review your decision," said Veneto Governor Luca Zaia. "Today, on Cardin's birthday, it would be nice for him to give a gift to the city. Cardin's development firm called off the controversial project on Friday citing a failure of approval from all involved governmental bodies in the two years since the 'Palais Lumiere' was first proposed. Stretching 300 meters, the commercial skyscraper was slated to be built in the industrial town of Marghera, creating shopping space and hotels and granting visitors an unobstructed view of nearby Venice. Cardin, who was born in the northern Veneto region, had also stressed the project was a way to reconnect with his roots. Opponents had argued it would disrupt the Medieval character of Venice, a UNESCO Heritage Site, and that the marshy terrain made for a soggy foundation that might not be able to support a massive steel-and-glass structure. Supporters were eager to see the foreign investment in Venice and Marghera, the latter of which has been particularly hard-hit by Italy's recession now in its third year. "To call off this exemplary project that opened up discussion won't allow us to send a strong signal at the international level to lure back foreign capital to Italy," said Zaia.
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di Angelo Biscardi