The Grand Canal is a channel of water that divides Venice, Italy, and forms one of the significant water-traffic corridors for the city. One end of the canal leads into the lagoon near the railway station, and the other end leads into the basin at San Marco. In between the two ends, it makes a large S shape through the central districts of Venice. It is 3.8 km (2.4 mi) long and 30 to 90 m (98 to 295 ft) wide, with an average depth of 5 meters (16 feet).The banks of the Grand Canal are lined with nearly 170 buildings, most of which date from the 13th to the 18th century, which represent the wealth and architecture created by the Republic of Venice during its height of power. Venetian families competed to show off their wealth with palazzos facing the Grand Canal., also the churches along the canal include many famous basilicas. Most of the palazzos emerge from water without pavement. Because most of the city’s traffic goes along the Canal rather than across it, only one bridge crossed the canal until the 19th century, the Rialto Bridge.