Sunday, 9 May 2021

Following Noise Issues, More Problems Plague Zagreb Cable Car

May the 9th, 2021 - There was much talk about the much anticipated Zagreb cable car which was in the works for a significant amount of time. The project was surrounded by issues and problems with time despite the fact that works had continued relatively normally up until recently.

As we previously reported, the Zagreb cable car failed to get the necessary permit to be put into function due to noise issues which need to be fully rectified before another request for a permit can be sent, with the State Inspectorate giving a very firm no at the moment. However, that isn't all, and now accusations of political motives for throwing a spanner in the works of the Zagreb cable car are being thrown around.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the conflict between Zagreb and the State Inspectorate, headed by HDZ member Andrija Mikulic, still hasn't abated. While the State Inspectorate claims that the Zagreb cable car cannot start working due to noise issues which need to be rectified, the City of Zagreb says that they're deliberately making it harder because of the local elections looming.

After the State Inspectorate recently deemed that the Zagreb cable car is the cause of excessive noise, the would-be Sljeme attraction now has another problem at its doorstep. The substation. Namely, as has unofficially been found out, the substation didn't pass the necessary inspection protocols either, and the contractor was given a period of two weeks to fix the problems found.

As 24sata has learned, the Zagreb cable car's substation doesn't have enough voltage to be able to supply electricity to the cable car itself, nor to the Mihaljevac-Gracansko dolje tram line.

As a reminder, the Zagreb City Office for Spatial Planning rejected the opinion of the Sanitary Inspection on Thursday last week, which refused to give a positive opinion to the Zagreb cable car for a permit due to its excessive noise.

Namely, inspectors determined that the City of Zagreb didn't provide evidence of noise measurement, and from the City Zagreb they claim that this isn't true and that they submitted all the necessary documents for the future cable car.

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Thursday, 6 May 2021

Due to Noise Issues, Plagued Sljeme Cable Car Fails to Obtain Permit

May the 6th, 2021 - If you've been following the news about Zagreb over the last few months, you'll more than likely have read about the proposed Sljeme cable car, the works on which have been continuing as normal. The project has been plagued with issues ever since its very conception, and now it has failed to get the proper permit to function due to noise.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Sanitary Inspection rejected the Sljeme cable car's permission because it didn't comply with the rules on excessive noise. Those responsible for the project have since been ordered to promptly fix the problem before making another application, 24sata unofficially found out from a source within the State Inspectorate.

To briefly recall, on Saturday in the technical inspection of the Sljeme cable car, the sanitary inspection of the State Inspectorate took place, which was set to give an opinion on excessive noise.

Namely, due to the report on noise measurement, the issuance of the ninth operating permit for the operation of the Sljeme cable car has been delayed, on which the Sanitary Inspection of the State Inspectorate and the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure did not give an opinion.

Confusion has arisen around the following question: Is the opinion on noise in the field of transport infrastructure? The Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure said that "noise isn't in their domain" and instructed the City of Zagreb to seek the opinion of the Faculty of Transport Sciences, and the Sanitary Inspection of the State Inspectorate referred the City of Zagreb to the Ministry of Health - a rather classic Croatian tale for anyone who has tried to do, well, basically anything administrative here.

The City of Zagreb assessed the Sljeme cable car case as "deliberate procrastination, allegedly due to local elections".

An attempt at contact with the project manager of the Sljeme cable car was made, but the individual in question couldn't be reached. As has since been learned unofficially, the contractor will have to construct a noise barrier, which will further increase the cost of the entire project.

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Sunday, 14 February 2021

Tramlines Blocked Over 60 Year Unresolved City of Zagreb Land Dispute

February 14, 2021 – A resident of suburbs to the north of the Croatian capital today blocked the city's tramlines with a fence in protest over an unresolved City of Zagreb land dispute. He threatened to repeat the action over forthcoming days

Marijan Kos and his neighbours are seemingly sick of waiting. The City of Zagreb land dispute they and their families have been involved in has been dragging on for sixty years. Many have watched their neighbours die awaiting a resolution.

They are residents of the north Zagreb suburb of Gračani, just before Mount Medvednica and almost the northernmost point to where city trams travel. And they claim ownership of land over which the trams now pass. Nobody disputes their claim. But, following the compulsory confiscation of their property for passage of the tramway network, they have still not been reimbursed. So, this morning, Marijan Kos took matters into his own hands.

Carrying a prepared fence, another man and Mr Kos - who is president of the neighbourhood's local committee - stood on either side of the tram line to block an approaching tram. They waited for only 30 seconds before backing down, then allowed the driver and his passengers to continue on their way. The Zagreb land dispute protest was symbolic. This time.

Screenshot_159tramind.pngHow Croatian portal Index carried the story of today's Zagreb land protest on the tramlines © Index screenshot

"With today's action we want to warn the City of Zagreb of the property-legal problem that has not been resolved since 1959,” Mr. Kos told reporters who had gathered to witness the Zagreb land dispute protest. “Since that year, we've had a final decision by which ZET (the tram network operator) is obliged to compensate the inhabitants of Gračani for the land confiscated for the construction of the tram line from Mihaljevac to Gracanski Dolj. That's about 166 land registry entries (and) there are about the same number of owners - some have already died and had no heirs. We are talking about 68,926 square meters of land on both sides of the tram line.”

ffa4f670370ebb22de1cdf622771c9a1Gracani.jpgThe tramline has run through the disputed land in Gracani for well over 50 years © Zagreb Facts

Mr. Kos invited the City to talk and uphold the standing agreement because, he says, it is in everyone's interest to resolve the matter in the best possible way. According to Vecernji List, who had a reporter at the scene, Mr. Kos reminded everyone that this tramline - once the mountain cable car opens - will become one of the main means of transport for all Zagreb residents and tourists to reach the top of Mount Medvednica.

Signalling that the Zagreb land dispute may escalate over forthcoming days, Mr. Kos went on to say; “We have prepared a fence and in the next few days we plan to install it and close the passage of trams if the City of Zagreb does not invite us to a meeting to try to solve this problem that has been dragging on for 50 years.”

Sunday, 17 January 2021

Ski Season on Sljeme Ski Resort Starts January 19, 2021

January 17, 2021 – To the delight of many Zagreb citizens, but also people from other parts of Croatia, the ski season on Sljeme ski resort begins on Tuesday, January 19, 2021.

As reported from Sljeme, recreational skiing will be possible every day from 9 am to 4 pm. The ski season will be organized according to the given epidemiological framework, as follows:

- the maximum number of people allowed on the ski slope is 1,000,

- only daily tickets will be on sale to control and monitor the number of users,

- masks or face covers are obligatory on the ski resort, and it is required to keep the prescribed distance of 1.5 m,

- cable cars and lifts are used according to the instructions of the Ski Resort staff,

- the Sljeme Ski Resort employees will be present at the facility to supervise the implementation of epidemiological measures, and intervention police officers will also be present to implement the rules of conduct at the Sljeme Ski Resort.

More detailed information will be released earlier this week.

Sljeme was closed to the public after the Snow Queen Trophy. Currently, only training of athletes is approved on the Sljeme ski slopes, which have been approved by the Decision of the Civil Protection Headquarters. Since last weekend, it has been allowed to use the bottom of Činovnička meadow for sledding, and many visitors seized that opportunity to enjoy the winter, especially with children.

Two days ago, the situation on Sljeme was clarified for the Jutarnji list by Igor Žiljak, the ski resort manager.

"The slopes are ready. We will use this weekend, during which there will be temperatures below zero, to make additional artificial snow and snow the Red, White, Green, and Blue descent. We've been working hard since October, and we're ready for skiing. But we are waiting for the decision of the Zagreb headquarters. The headquarters in the Primorje-Gorski Kotar County allowed Platak and Čelimbaša to ski, we hope that this will happen to us as soon as possible," said Žiljak two days before the news of the opening of Sljeme.

There it is, to the joy of many Zagreb residents but also visitors from other parts of Croatia. From Tuesday, they will be able to enjoy the winter on Sljeme.

Wednesday, 6 January 2021

Historic Day for Croatian Skiing: Four Croatian Skiers in 2nd Run of Snow Queen Trophy!

January 6, 2021 - After the ladies took on Sljeme on Sunday, a total of 55 male skiers competed in the first run of the Snow Queen Trophy in Zagreb on Wednesday.

The first slalom started at 12:15. The Croatia ski team has four representatives on Sljeme this year - Filip Zubčić, Istok Rodeš, Matej Vidović, and Samuel Kolega.

Croatia's best hope for a good result on Sljeme was in Filip Zubčić, currently eighth in the overall World Cup standings. He reached that spot by winning first and third place in Santa Caterina and 10th in Alta Badia in three giant slaloms. In the slalom this season, his best result is 20th place from Madonna di Campiglio.

Zubčić achieved his best slalom result in his career on Sljeme. He was 15th in 2015, and the victory went to Austrian Marcel Hirscher.

Hirscher has the most victories on Sljeme and was even proclaimed king of Sljeme five times. Last season, Frenchman Clement Noël won the competition. This season, the biggest favorite is the Norwegian Henrik Kristoffersen, the leader in the overall slalom standings after two races. In Alta Badia, Swiss skier Ramon Zenhäusern celebrated, and in Madonna di Campiglio, it was Kristoffersen.

Kristoffersen was the first to start in today's race, while Croatian skiers Filip Zubčić started at number 16, Istok Rodeš at 33, Matej Vidović at 52, and Samuel Kolega at 53.

And what a great first run it was for Croatian skiers. 

Namely, Zubčić had the 10th best time and is 49 hundredths of a second behind a place on the podium!

The great performance of Rodeš gave him a high 18th place, while Samuel Kolega also qualified for the second run in 30th.

Finally, Matej Vidović, Croatia's final skier in the first run, also qualified for the second run with the 21st best time! This is a historic day for Croatian skiing, as all four Croatian representatives will perform in the second run for the first time! 

In the second run, which was scheduled for 15:30, three Croatian skiers achieved the result of their career in slalom - Zubčić finished fifth, Vidović 12th, and Kolega 15th place. Rodeš finished in 23rd place.


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Sunday, 3 January 2021

Snow Queen Zagreb Begins Today, World's Best Skiers on Sljeme from Noon

January 3, 2021 - The world's best female skiers will open the Snow Queen Trophy on Sljeme on Sunday. Among them are two Croatian representatives.

Namely, HRT reports that Leona Popović will start 45th, and 16-year-old Zrinka Ljutić will have the starting number 65. Austrian skier Chiara Mair will open the race. The introductory program starts at noon on HRT 2.

With the sun's early rays, the ski staff and competitors arrived at the top of Medvednica on Saturday to better prepare for the competitive challenge that awaits female skiers on Sunday and male skiers on Wednesday. While winning and achieving good results is a priority, Croatian skiers find it hard to shake off the tragic 6.4 magnitude earthquake that struck central Croatia on December 29. 

"It is an emergency with these earthquakes. Today is a day of mourning. I wish everyone all the best to really recover from that as soon as possible, it is not easy, and this year everything will definitely be a little different," said Samuel Kolega on Saturday.

Croatian skiers have grown used to skiing without the support of the fans who were especially loud on Sljeme. This season's World Cup debutant, Zrinka Ljutić, will find it challenging even without that kind of pressure, considering that she is just breaking the ice among the ski elite.

"We just had the last training here on the green slope. It's good, I feel good, I'm ready, I'll see how it will be tomorrow because of the snow. I hope the track will last until my ride, and I will do my best. I train a lot, I really work hard and I try hard, so we will see," said the young Croatian skier.

For this great effort to ultimately pay off with top results, Zrinka must gradually take on the world of skiing. The Ljutić team is aware of that, and Zrinka shared her goals for this season:

"I would like to enter the 30s in slalom and giant slalom, and have the best possible result at the Eurocup, which I will start during the season."

The Snow Queen Trophy organizers announced on their Facebook page that they would be donating to earthquake victims:

"Motivated by the recent catastrophic earthquake that hit Petrinja, Sisak, Glina, and the surrounding area, we decided to donate 10% of the prize money for the first 30 skiers to those affected. This donation will be matched by CroSki, bringing the total amount donated to 350.000 HRK. The funds will support people whose homes have been damaged or destroyed in central Croatia. Our hearts are with you."

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Saturday, 2 January 2021

Zagreb Cable Car Will Not Begin Operations on Sljeme as Scheduled

January the 2nd, 2021 - The much anticipated Zagreb cable car was due to begin function on beautiful Sljeme which towers over the Croatian capital tomorrow, bringing a little bit of joy after a dire year which ended with tragic earthquakes. Of course, that won't happen.

In Croatia, the snail mail rule continues to apply, and it is unlikely to come as much of a surprise to anyone that the much talked about Zagreb cable car's opening time has bee delayed. The cable car will be located in an extremely beautiful natural ''escape'' area from the city, a paradise for cyclists and hikers, and which is also home to the Snow Queen skiing event. We wrote recently how despite not having even been officially opened for use yet, it already unfortunately required repairs.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, works on the upcoming Zagreb cable car are currently underway on the individual steel-reinforced cable cars, and despite the announcements that the Snow Queen skiing event will be the premiere ''crowning'' of the new Zagreb cable car on January the 3rd, 2021, this will not happen. As Radio Sljeme learned, the contractor, Doppelmeyer, has not yet submitted the documentation required for the issuance of usage permits.

As stated, currently, work is underway on each of the steel-reinforced cable cars, which the City of Zagreb requested as a supplement to the main project on the 25th of November 2020.

Technical inspections of the Brestovac substation and its intermediate station, as well as the upper and lower stations, are currently underway, which is why the opening of the brand new Zagreb cable car is being postponed for at least two weeks from now.

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Sunday, 27 December 2020

Emmanuel Couder of FIS Gives Green Light to Snow Queen Trophy on Sljeme

December 27, 2020 - The famous 'Red Slope' (Crveni spust) on Sljeme officially received the green light for the Audi FIS Ski World Cup "Snow Queen Trophy" 2021.

HRT reports that this was confirmed today by Emmanuel Couder, director of the FIS World Cup for technical disciplines for men, who checked the quality of the Sljeme slalom track, mandatory for all organizers of FIS World Cup races.

Thanks to the efforts of the organizers and employees of the Sljeme ski resort in charge of preparing the track, the Red Slope this year was ready for FIS control at the beginning of December, or the earliest in the Snow Queen's history.

Emmanuel Couder's go-ahead to the races beginning on January 3, 2021, was therefore just a formality, and the control served to agree on the final details around track preparation.

"There is enough snow on the Red Slope for official confirmation of the races. For the next two days, additional amounts of snow will be worked above the start, along the track, and below the finish line to have spare amounts of snow in case of need. A decision on the final preparation of the track, as well as water injection, will be made in the next few days depending on the weather forecast," Couder said.

There are currently 50-80 centimeters of compacted snow cover on the Red Slope, which is enough to withstand the eventual south wind. Also, if the temperatures are in the minus long enough, there is a possibility that the Green Descent can serve as a warm-up track.

"The COVID-19 pandemic and strict epidemiological measures have made the organization of this season's Snow Queen races more logistically demanding than in previous years, but the weather has really served us and made the preparation of the track easier. The Red Slope is in excellent condition, and the Croatia national team is training and preparing on it again, both for the upcoming races in Semmering and for the Snow Queen. We are only sorry that this year when everything was ready at the beginning of the month, the citizens could not enjoy skiing on Sljeme due to epidemiological restrictions. We believe and hope that soon, they will also get the opportunity to ski at the local ski resort above the city," said the director of the Organizing Committee of slalom races Vedran Pavlek.

Given the current epidemiological situation, the races will be held without spectators and with the strictest protocols for protecting the health and safety of all participants.

The women's slalom is scheduled for Sunday, January 3, with the first run at 12.30 and the second at 16.00, while the men's slalom race will take place on Wednesday, January 6, with the first run at 12.15 and the second at 15.30.

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Friday, 18 December 2020

Snow Queen Trophy Ski Race to be Held on Schedule but Without Spectators

ZAGREB, Dec 18, 2020 - The FIS international ski federation and National Civil Protection Authority have officially approved the 2021 Snow Queen Trophy, FIS World Cup Ski race on Mount Sljeme in compliance with the most stringent epidemiological measures and without any spectators, FIS announced on Friday.

In accordance with current anti-COVID measures in Croatia, the Sljeme race will be held  on 3 and 6 January without spectators and guests and according to FIS rules for this season there will not be any public draw of starting numbers that was traditionally held in Zagreb's main square.

This will be the first time that the race will be held without audience and in an effort to limit contact between competitors, additional protective mechanisms have been introduced with "balloons" separating teams, the media, organisation teams without mutual mixing between balloons.

All participants have to produce a negative COVID-19 test no older than 72 hours and monitor their health on a daily basis in their FIS COVID-19 passports.

All the competitors and their teams arriving in Zagreb will be previously tested and accommodated in The Westin Zagreb which will closed to other visitors. Hotel staff will also be tested while reporters will be accommodated in another hotel.

This is the 15th edition of the Women's Slalom race with the winner being proclaimed as the Snow Queen. The Women's Slalom race is scheduled for Sunday 3 January 2021 with the 1st run starting at 12.30 pm and the 2nd run starting at 4 pm.

The 12th Men's Slalom on Sljeme will start at 12.15 on Wednesday 6 January and the second run will start at 3.30 pm.

Monday, 23 November 2020

Left-Wing Parties File Criminal Report Against Mayor Bandic for Sljeme Cable Car

ZAGREB, November 23, 2020 - The We Can! and Zagreb is Ours! political platforms on Monday filed a criminal report against Zagreb Mayor Milan Bandic for abuse of office and power and for illegal favouritism related to the construction of the Sljeme cable car.

"According to the conspirator who sent a video to all media outlets with clear evidence, DORH (Office of the Chief State Prosecutor) and the USKOK anti-corruption office should already act ex officio. However, I am filing a criminal report against Bandic for abuse of office and power, graft and conspiracy to commit crimes" Councillor and MP Tomislav Tomasevic said.

That is not only Bandic's but also Andrej Plenkovic's cable car

He filed a criminal complaint also so that institutions would report to him on what they had done, he added.

"For this 13 unlucky years, the City of Zagreb has been waiting for the repair of the old Sljeme cable car or for a new one. The HDZ (Croatian Democratic Union) even set the construction of a new cable car as a condition for forming a coalition with Milan Bandic. So this most expensive cable car in Europe is also HDZ's cable car, not only Bandic's, but also Andrej Plenkovic's cable car," he said.

Coordinator for cable car construction from Bandic's party

In addition to that, in 2016 Bandic appointed Vladimir Gruborovic, a member of the the Main Committee of Bandic's party, as the coordinator of the team for the construction of the cable car, which includes representatives of the City Administration and all city companies.

That is more than enough evidence, Tomasevic said.

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