The meeting was intended to gather the opinions of those working in maritime businesses as regards their respective activities (fishing, harbour transport, leasing of ships, pilotage and yachting) on changes to the mooring exclusion areas (ZIM), enlarged to compensate for the creation of light boats mooring areas (ZMEL).
Initial diagnosis: at first evaluation, the creation of the ZMEL and the compensatory extension of the ZIM directly and specifically penalises mooring areas assigned to ships (therefore yachts) of 20 to 50 metres in length, with an impact on the attractiveness of the harbour for yachts, nautical safety in the remaining areas and the economic benefits to shops and restaurants in Villefranche.
Those involved in business shared an opinion, in particularly on:
• The legitimate recognition of environmental protection
• The need to continue economic activity, when it respects the environment
• The simplification of the applicable regulations.
In this regard:
• The creation of ZMEL was approved at 2 sites, Palais de la Marine and Rochambeau (plans reviewed, presented at the meeting).
• It was admitted, with the support of Mr Trojani, the Mayor of Villefranche/Mer, that there was no objective reason to prohibit ships from 20 to 50 m long from the area, located outside the Posidonia fields, between the north ZMEL (Palais de la Marine) and the north of the “raquette”: that is where the ”small“ yachts like to moor for a few hours, thus bringing customers to local restaurateurs.
• The area of access to the Port de la Santé will be protected so that tenders are able to access it without being hindered by ships at anchor in the area described in the previous paragraph
• Furthermore, the area of prohibition of mooring (ships of 20-50 metres long) proposed to the north of the latitude of the south quay of the Port de la Darse will be reduced (moving northward its southern limit) at the latitud of the entrance light of the Port of VillefrancheDarse. All mooring areas south of this boundary will be free, outside of the raquette, for nonpiloted ships (i.e. less than 50 m long).
• The rules of access to the raquette (outside the wreck rectangle) are modified to allow any mooring or loading when the vessel is piloted there.
• It is agreed that access rules will be edited on the basis of “a piloted vessel yes/no” criteria and not on its length. Therefore, it would be possible for 45-metre yachts to obtain, via an accepted request for pilotage, mooring in the raquette.
• Uniformity of pilotage thresholds (length of ships) in the Alpes-Maritime is desirable.
• Many other discussion points were raised, but are not the main concern of yachts (speed of tenders, limitations of lighthouse sectors…)
• It was agreed that with regulations becoming very cluttered, with overlaying of complex rules over space and time, an upgrade in the form of a single regulatory document is very much to be desired.