Sunday, 10 October 2021

130 Million Kuna Investment to Result in New Pula Shopping Centre

October the 10th, 2021 - A brand new Pula shopping centre looks to be on the horizon through an enormous investment totalling a massive 130 million kuna.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, judging by the ambitious announcements and plans that have been seen so far, the gorgeous Istrian city of Pula could get another shopping centre instead of a dilapidated department store in the city centre - Pula Mall.

A devastated, neglected, once attractive building in the centre, right next to the green market, could soon return to its old glory in a new, even better edition as another Pula shopping centre finally looms. This was announced at the last session of the City Council by Mayor Filip Zoricic, in which it was said that this large project would soon begin to be realised. He touched on the situation with the market itself at the Council, saying that it doesn't look good, and that it seems ridiculous as Pula boasts one of the most beautiful Art Nouveau buildings in the entire Mediterranean, which dates from the beginning of the 20th century.

The wish of Pula's city administration is to bring this dilapidated old building back to life, following the example of Florence in neighbouring Italy, so they plan to revitalise it with additional gastronomic offers and other content, Glas Istre writes.

Zoricic also pointed out the need to arrange locations on both sides of the market, and in that context he also mentioned the potential new Pula shopping centre/department store.

''We're going to talk to the employers, make a plan and see how we might solve the appearance and condition of our main market, and that this is accompanied by the renovation of the department store,'' said Zoricic. In a conversation with the owner's representative, they agreed to clean up the area in November, and the new Pula shopping centre, he said, would get not only a new car park, but also a slow food restaurant, two shops from well-known brands and more. “It’s a unique space, the very heart of the city and it needs to look nicer than it does today,” he said.

This was confirmed in a telephone conversation by Predrag Djordjevic, the project manager, who said that the building is owned by the Luxembourg project company Istria Real Estate, which in turn is owned by the British York Capital. Djordjevic is very optimistic when it comes to the realisation of this ambitious project. If everything goes according to plan, it will be part of the urban renewal of the city, which, according to the idea of ​​the Mayor of Pula, should finally breathe some life back into the otherwise somewhat overlooked centre.

The interlocutor confirmed to them that there will be a new car park with 150 spaces in the basement of the new Pula shopping centre. He also provided a visualisation of the future, renovated building, which has already been named - Pula Mall. He says that this is a project in which as much as 130 million kuna will be invested.

For more, check out our business section.

Thursday, 23 September 2021

Pula Car-Free Day: Should Lungomare Promenade be Car-Free?

September 23, 2021 - Pula Car-Free Day was commemorated on September 22nd, 2021, just like in many cities and towns worldwide. The event, which is part of European Mobility Week, also raised the question of whether or not should Pula's Lungomare promenade be closed for car traffic in general.

Given that Zagreb is the capital of Croatia, the city may often take up more room on the Croatian news scene than other cities and places in the country. Such an example was the programme the city prepared for European Mobility Week (like the event in the Zagreb City Museum), the celebration of which took place on Wednesday with the commemoration of World Car-Free Day on September the 22nd.

That said, other towns in Croatia had their programmes too. One such example is the Eastern Istrian coastal town of Pula.

As the local Pula.hr website stated, this year's edition of the European Mobility Week programme in Pula was added to with a motto ''Mobility with zero-emissions for everyone'', with which Pula entered its fifteenth year of organising activities for the occasion.

''In marking this important event, partners from the Muscular Dystrophy Society of Istria, the Istria County police force, and the Croatian Car Club Pula-Rovinj have been joining us every year. By participating in European Mobility Week, we want to encourage sustainable development and upgrade urban traffic. Twenty new buses operating in Pula are fueled by natural gas which satisfies the highest ecological standards and are adapted to disabled people. This all contributes to the image of Pula as a modern European town,'' said Pula's Deputy Mayor Elena Puh Belci at the opening in the programme earlier this week.

On Wednesday, in the spirit of Car-Free Days, the main waterfront, Lungo Mare promenade, was closed for car traffic from 06:30 to 15:30.

''The pedestrians we bumped into yesterday thought some construction work was underway instead of it all being a promotion of a more healthy lifestyle, given the no-traffic-sign was placed all the way from Valkan to Mornar,'' wrote the local Glas Istre daily newspaper.

Glas Istre journalists also asked the locals whether or not Lungomare should be closed for traffic in general and not just symbolically on September the 22nd.

''It would actually be really nice if people could have a promenade without traffic so they could walk its whole length. Given that the younger population gathers here on benches at night, maybe it would be good for the promenade to be open for traffic from 22:00 to 06:00,'' locals Tin Knežević and Ana Milotić told Glas Istre.

''It should be closed off for traffic. People need to move more and walk around more, and there's too much traffic here. People want to jump straight from their cars into the sea without doing any walking. The beginning of this road is slim and the road from the restaurants goes off in two directions, so everyone should arrive here by walking,'' said Marta Pešutić.

While many in the article felt that cars on Lungomare should be limited, apart from not being sure whether or not something like that would be possible in the near future, some people also openly took into account the fact that cars aren't useless.

''Cars get in the way, but sometimes they're needed, so maybe we should think about that too,'' concluded Glas Istre with a quote from Mira Filipović.

Learn more about Pula in our TC guide

For more about ecology in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 30 July 2021

New Mayors of Pula and Vodnjan Ditch Two Major Projects, Jutarnji List Reports

ZAGREB, 30 July 2021 - In just two days the new mayors of Pula and Vodnjan rejected two major projects by the Istrian Democratic Party (IDS) worth about HRK 90 million, Jutarnji List daily said on Friday.

Both projects are from the EU's Integrated Territorial Investment (ITU) mechanism, and a portion of the funding was grants from the European Regional Development Fund. But both independent mayors decided to forgo the grants arguing that the stakes of their respective cities in the investment projects were too high.

The aim of the projects was to convert a former industrial complex in Pula and an old oil mill in Vodnjan into tourism and cultural centres. A HRK 34.9 million grant agreement for the Mehanika polyvalent centre in Pula was signed in February, while Vodnjan's MMC Torcio project was awarded a HRK 7.15 million grant.

Both mayors said that the main reasons for rejecting the projects were too short implementation deadlines, an excessive credit burden on their budgets and too high bids for the performance of construction works.

For more on politics, CLICK HERE.

Sunday, 18 July 2021

2021 Pula Film Festival Officially Opens at Arena with 1,500 in Attendance

July 18, 2021 - The 2021 Pula Film Festival is held in 15 locations, four of which are reserved for the film program with more than 90 screenings.

Without traditional fireworks, with a limited number of spectators, and in compliance with all epidemiological measures, the 68th Pula Film Festival was opened in the Pula Arena on Saturday night with a festive program and screening of the Croatian film "Murina" directed by Antoneta Alamat Kusijanović, reports Jutarnji List.

The envoy of the Croatian president, special advisor for culture Zdravko Zima, said at the opening that Pula was recognized and will remain so in the future - as a unique place of pilgrimage for many film workers. As he pointed out, it is a city mentioned because of its many sights, because of the film festival and the Book Fair, and he concluded the address by assessing that "art is permanent, and human lives are short."

State Secretary at the Ministry of Culture Krešimir Partl, as an envoy of the Prime Minister and Minister of Culture and Media, said that the 68th edition of the Pula Film Festival is taking place in different challenging circumstances of the coronavirus pandemic. He pointed out that the pandemic had suspended numerous projects, but as he said, "although there are fewer films, they are of high quality and have already been awarded at festivals" and therefore believes that the program can be beautiful.

"Behind us is a challenging year that has particularly hit the culture and audio-visual sector. However, I believe a better time is ahead of us, and the Government will do everything in its power to help normalize and restart economic and cultural activities," said Secretary of State Partl.

He said that the Ministry of Culture is proud of this year's Croatian program, the authors, producers, artists, and employees who managed to complete the shooting and production of films presented at this festival in difficult circumstances.

The mayor of Pula, Filip Zoričić, said that the pandemic had left its mark on the cultural sector and that the connection between film and Pula was deeply rooted in the city's tradition.

"The festival is part of our past and part of the future. Pula is a city of film, and we will work to extend the film story of three thousand years of Pula through quality programs throughout the year," said Zoričić. He expressed the desire for the festival to outgrow its framework and become an even more important social and cultural moment of modern and urban Pula.

"Pula is a city of culture, Pula is the Croatian Rome, which especially evokes respect and culture. The film sums up all the arts, and that is a special feeling of freedom, the freedom we always have to talk about. The film and the book give us the opportunity to travel, dream, fantasize, ask questions and give some answers," said Mayor Zoričić. As he pointed out at the end of his speech, "the Pula Film Festival is a world festival, a European, regional, Croatian, but above all a Pula Film Festival."

Like every edition, films will be shown on the most beautiful natural stage under the open sky until Friday.

Members of the Croatian Program Jury are Polish screenwriter and director Pawel Pawlikowski, actress Zrinka Cvitešić, director Danilo Šerbedžija, assistant professor at the University of Split Academy of Arts Mirko Pivčević, and artistic director of the Chicago International Film Festival Mimi Plauche.

The festival opened with a screening of the Croatian film "Murina," debutant Antoneta Alamat Kusijanović, the first screening of the film after its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, where it won the Camera d'Or award for the best debut film. This is one of the greatest successes of Croatian film.

1,500 spectators in the Arena could enter without COVID certificates.

The Pula Film Festival is held in 15 locations, four of which are reserved for the film program with more than 90 screenings, and of the films in competition, there are six Croatian and ten co-productions.

For more on lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Saturday, 17 July 2021

Injured Turtle in Korčula Bay: Rescued, Treated, Ready For New Life

July 17, 2021 -  An injured turtle in Korčula Bay sparked immediate action by locals and vets, seeing the turtle being saved and getting a second chance.

Like many other places, towns, locations, and neighborhoods, Korčula also has groups on social media to ease communication among users who share the same place of daily life. Friday afternoon saw residents of Korčula have a big heart, and despite might being stereotypically perceived as laid back, chilled chaps (as for every Mediterranian-culture impacted people), they were quick to act when needed.

A user under the name Antoni Ja, one of the members of the FB group Oglasnik otoka Korčule (Korčula Island Message Board), reported on a 20 kilo turtle floating in the sea in Žrnovska Banja. Floating, the keyword.

„Please do something, so it doesn't get hit by a speedboat or some maniac“, said Antoni Ja.

Other users immediately started to worry if the turtle was injured, and the name of a local vet Vilović was suggested as an address to report the issue.

Sure enough, Vilović examined the turtle, and the 20-kilo turtle turned out to be over 50 kilos. Not quite often seen in shallow waters, but nevertheless a normal turtle size in the Adriatic sea.

„It had a head wound, most likely from the propeller. It is on its way to the Specialist in Split by catamaran“, briefly commented Vilović.

Indeed, as the photo on the FB group published by Ana Jurić shows, the turtle was on its way to Split.

„Kudos to the vet and the guys that organized all this, and the turtle is huge!“ wrote Jurić.

zrnovska_banja_visit_korcula.jpg

Zrnovska Banja where the turtle was spotted floating © Visit Korcula

Dr. Mario Gavranović, head of the VET VISION clinic in Split, confirmed that the turtle arrived on Friday night.  „It should arrive in an hour or two. The propeller injury is an old wound and I will first have to examine it to see what is the proper way of treatment“, said Dr. Gavranović.

When contacted on Saturday morning to provide more information on what happened to the turtle, dr. Gavranović wasn't in his office. As confirmed by Aquarium Pula, the reason was Gavranović took the turtle to the aquarium which also has a Marine turtles rescue centre.

"The turtle is alright, on its way and should be in the Centre around midday", briefly confirmed Aquairum Pula.

Pula's rescue centre has been active for around 17 years (with turtles being strictly protected in Croatia since 1995 as one of the most endangered animal species), and Morski.hr wrote in 2019 how the centre cured over 100 turtles. 

Aquarium_Pula.jpg

One of the many rescued turtles by Marine turtles rescue centre © Aquarium Pula

Croatia loves its animals

With vets displaying their expertise, locals on Korčula once again demonstrated their compassion and big heart when it comes to animals. And that compassion is not different from the general mood in Croatia.

With the nourishing of the recently deceased stork Malena being the most famous story of love between Croatians and animals, there were plenty of other examples too. From rejoicing every time whales or dolphins are spotted, when sheep visited the Zadar mall or when a Croatian reality TV star Jasmin Kunišinac raised a fox.

Unfortunately, Croatia also records cases of animal cruelty, such as the poisoning of cats and dogs, and each time Croatian public met it with a fierce backlash and anger for such acts.

Despite quite often arguing about everything imaginable and unimaginable, Croatians also express solidarity with each other when things get tough. For instance, many cities canceled their new year celebrations and relocated the money to Petrinja following its earthquake, as well as Croatian entrepreneurs too. But, many more instances of help were noted over the years.

Learn more about Korčula on our TC page.

For more about animals in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Thursday, 24 June 2021

Professor Slavko Krajcar Death: A Look at the Life of Fantastic FER Professor

June 24, 2021 - Following the professor Slavko Krajcar Death on June 18, take a look at the life of an established educator and scientist whose expertise made a significant contribution to Croatian politics in the energy sector.

„The influence of a teacher can never be erased“, or as an American historian Henry Brook Adams put it, „Teachers affect eternity; no one can tell where their influence stops“- these two are just some of the inspirational quotes about teachers you can find with a little assistance from Google.

Students at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing (FER) at the University of Zagreb are recognized in Croatia for their innovations. At the end of the day, they owe their excellence to the professors that educated them.

One of such professors was Dr. Slavko Krajcar that sadly, as FER official website reported, passed away on June 18, last week.

"Professor, Dr. Slavko Kranjcar made a significant contribution to the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing as he was a dean of the Faculty from 1998-2002, after which he was the head of the department for high voltage and energetics from 2002-2006. He will remain in permanent memory as a respected scientist, expert, and a colleague“, said FER in an official release.

Kranjcar was also the member and the president of the Managing council at Ruđer Bošković Institute (IRB) that also expressed its condolences.

Born on January 14, 1951, Slavko Krajcar enrolled to study in FER in 1969, followed by graduating from Technical High School in Pula. He majored in FER in 1980 and got his Ph.D. in 1988. His scientific and lecture career started in 1974 when he was an assistant on a manufacturing electric energy course. From there on, he mentored various students on different levels, ten of which earned Ph.D. statuses under his guidance.

Kranjcar was active in the media, giving interviews and writing op-pieces on education issues, specifically the education of engineers in the 21st century.

„Krajcar participated on many domestic projects regarding science or economy as well on international scientific and professional projects. Counting just after the year 2000, he participated in over fifty projects, 36 of which he led. He was one of the leading figures in making Croatian Energetic Strategy (which the parliament accepted in 2010) and the Energetic Efficiency Strategy (2008) as well as executive plans on new strategies (2008-2020)“, recalled FER.

They added Fer rewarded Krajcar in 2002 when he received Josip Lončar's golden plaque for his dedicated scientific and educational work. He also received special recognition for developing SRCE- The Computer Centre of the University of Zagreb in 2011, followed by the Ho CIRED award for contribution in developing the field of electro distribution in Croatia. He also received HRO CIGRE recognition in 2018 for the overall contribution to the electro energetic activities in the Republic of Croatia and the Nikola Tesla Award in 2020 for the contribution to science, education, and profession in the field of electrical engineering and computer sciences and application of those technologies.

Believe it or not, Krajcar even made time to contribute to art and culture as well. He published two books of poetry, edited four books regarding cultural issues, and was the president of the Association for Čakavski dialect (distinct for the use of Ča as a word for what and conversated on coastal Croatia).

Learn more about Croatian inventions & discoveries: from Tesla to Rimac on our TC page.

For more about science in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 4 June 2021

Book Fair Called "San(j)am knjige" Starts in Pula

ZAGREB, 4 June 2021 - The 26th edition of the book fair "San(j)am knjige" was opened in Pula at a ceremony on Friday.

The latest edition of the event started exactly 18 months after the 25th edition, and last year, the COVID-19 pandemic prevented its organisation.

This fair is running through 13 June, and about 30,000 titles of more than 250 publishers are being promoted at the venue of the fair in this biggest Istrian city.

For more on news in Croatia, check our dedicated news page.

Wednesday, 26 May 2021

Flights from Scandinavia to Croatia Return Thanks to SAS, Norwegian, TUI, Nova Airways!

May 26, 2021 - The latest flight news to Croatia as flights from Scandinavia to Croatia return this summer thanks to SAS, Norwegian, TUI, and Nova Airways. 

Croatian Aviation reports that SAS, Norwegian, TUI, and Nova Airways are announcing the start of operations on their seasonal routes from Scandinavia to Croatian airports.

After several months, Scandinavian airlines are resuming traffic on their seasonal international routes to Croatian airports. Pula, Split, and Dubrovnik will again have direct connections with several cities. A look at the flight schedule for June.

Lines to Split begin first

The first flights this season have been announced to Split Airport. From June 5, Norwegian will operate once a week on the Stockholm - Split - Stockholm route, and from the end of June, daily flights have been announced.

In addition to Stockholm, Norwegian plans to introduce the Copenhagen - Split - Copenhagen route (daily) from the end of June, and flights on the Oslo - Split - Oslo route have been announced from June 17, three times a week, every Thursday, Saturday and Sunday.

SAS Scandinavian Airlines will resume operations on the Stockholm - Split - Stockholm route from June 5, and as of June 16, two flights a week have been announced on this route, on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

As of Wednesday, June 9, SAS introduces the Copenhagen - Split - Copenhagen line, which will operate twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. At the beginning of July, the company will introduce a regular line between Oslo and Split.

In addition to the two mentioned carriers, from Friday, June 4, TUI will operate once a week from Stockholm to Split. Nova Airways will also operate on the regular charter line Gothenburg - Split - Stockholm from the beginning of June.

At the end of June, the return of SAS to Pula

From the end of June, SAS Scandinavian Airlines routes to Pula Airport have also been announced. These are three international lines, from Copenhagen, Oslo, and Stockholm.

The line from Copenhagen to Pula is announced twice a week, on Tuesdays and Sundays, the line from Oslo once a week, on Mondays, and the line from Stockholm twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The lines will be in operation from the last week of June, and an increase in the number of weekly operations is expected from July.

Norwegian is currently not selling tickets to Pula Airport for this summer season.

Lines to Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik has SAS and Norwegian flights in the announcement; both mentioned airlines should resume traffic to Dubrovnik in the last week of June.

SAS is currently planning two lines to Dubrovnik from Copenhagen and Stockholm. The line from Copenhagen is announced once a week from June 28, on Mondays, while the line from Stockholm is also announced once a week, on Sundays, from June 27. The carrier also plans to increase the number of operations towards Dubrovnik in early July. 

Norwegian currently offers only one line to Dubrovnik Airport. It is a line Stockholm - Dubrovnik - Stockholm, which should have its first flight this season on June 28. Three flights a week have been announced, on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, and from July on Saturdays.

Four lines from Zagreb

According to current announcements, Zagreb will have four direct lines to Scandinavia this summer.

At the beginning of June, Croatia Airlines will increase the number of operations on its regular route Zagreb - Copenhagen - Zagreb with a morning departure from Zagreb Airport, and in June, flights on this route will be available daily.

From July 23, Ryanair will introduce the Zagreb - Gothenburg - Zagreb route (three flights a week), while from September, regular flights from Zagreb to Oslo Torp and Malmo have been announced (both routes two flights a week).

In previous years, Norwegian operated on the line between Copenhagen and Zagreb, but this line is not on sale on the airline's official website this year either.

Flights from Zadar to Stockholm

Since the end of June, Zadar Airport has announced a regular direct Ryanair flight between Gothenburg and Zadar; two flights a week have been announced, on Tuesdays and Fridays, and in July, there will be as many as four flights a week on this route.

In addition to Gothenburg, Zadar will be connected to Stockholm and Aarhus in July.

Rijeka, Osijek, and Brac, the three remaining airports open to international traffic, currently have no scheduled flights from Scandinavia for this summer season. 

Follow the latest on flights to Croatia HERE and the latest travel updates and COVID-19 news from Croatia HERE.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 21 May 2021

COVID-19 Testing at Croatian Airports: New Summer Testing Locations at Dubrovnik, Pula, Zadar Airports

May 21, 2021 - The latest regarding COVID-19 testing at Croatian airports as Dubrovnik, Pula, and Zadar should introduce testing locations inside their passenger terminals this summer. 

Two Croatian airports, Split and Zagreb, currently have organized passenger testing for COVID-19. Now, Croatian Aviation reports that Dubrovnik, Pula, and Zadar airports are introducing the same. By the beginning of the summer season, the mentioned airports will also enable airport testing. 

Zagreb Airport in January this year allowed all passengers en route to Amsterdam to test at the airport, which is not surprising given that the regulations of the Netherlands at that time were such that passengers had to have a rapid test no older than 3 hours from entry into the aircraft, so airport testing was almost imperative.

After the Netherlands removed this measure, Zagreb still allowed testing at the airport (PCR or rapid test), and the same is available on the second floor, at two check-in counters on the right side of the passenger terminal.

We remind you that from April 26, COVID-19 testing is also possible near Split Airport; you can check the working hours HERE.

Dubrovnik, Zadar, and Pula airports (the only ones with Split and Zagreb that currently have international traffic) do not offer the possibility of testing at the airport. Still, all three mentioned airports informed Croatian Aviation that the management is preparing testing locations. By the beginning of the summer season, i.e., when several international lines are launched, everything will be ensured that testing (PCR or rapid test) is available in passenger terminals at Pula, Zadar, and Dubrovnik airports.

Testing at airports is part of the "new normal". Logically, the same will be possible in all Croatian airports, with regular international routes announced this summer. Without this possibility, tourist holidays in Croatia this summer are significantly complicated, so this service should be provided at the starting and ending points when visiting the country. 

Follow the latest on flights to Croatia HERE and the latest travel updates and COVID-19 news from Croatia HERE.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

 

Sunday, 16 May 2021

"Sa(n)jam Knjige u Istri" Book Fair to be Held in Pula on 4-13 June

ZAGREB, 16 May, 2021 - The 26th "Sa(n)jam knjige u Istri" book fair will take place in Pula, Istria County on 4-13 June under the slogan "Where are we?", organisers announced earlier this week.

This year's edition will overflow with poetry and music, organisers said, thanks to 15 poets led by Petar Gudelj who will appear before the public accompanied by musicians led by jazz trumpeter Branko Sterpin.

The fair will feature the traditional "Breakfast with the author" programme and a new one, called "The new faces of Pula".

Participating in the fair for the first time are writers Svetislav Basara, Želimir Periš, Ivana Bodrožić, Magdalena Blažević, Tanja Stupar-Trifunović, Ena Katarina Haller and Ivica Đikić.

Another novelty will see Zagreb Croatian National Theatre actors reciting the verses of contemporary Croatian women poets.

For more news about lifestyle in Croatia, click TCN's dedicated page.

For more news about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

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