Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Architecture and legal/illegal construction in Istria


This post has to deal with legal and illegal building construction on Croatian and Istrian coast. Today, all the news and newspapers in Croatia and Istria writes about it. Why? Because the Croatian coast has been kept from devastation for long time, thanks to communistic regime in the past. But today, we are in danger that our coast gets destroyed because of peoples greed and interests of various lobbies. There is no quality plan that respects environment, culture and tradition, needs of local people in satisfying manner, and what is maybe even more important, that is respected. Seems that lot’s of things has been subject to profit that little will make, and many will lost: their heritage in land (which is sold), sun, sea culture and tradition, which was left to them by their ancestors. Some are promising more working places, more wealth, but what we can see is less wealthy people and more poor and stressed people in fear for their basic needs.

So, there are waste number of constructions built illegally, they are in most cases ugly, and violates the environment. According to Croatian law, nobody can own the coast. So you can buy a land near coast, but you have not right to deny access to anyone who want to take bath. That people are so arrogant, that not only they have built without authorization, but they also board the coast forcing other people to go around to pass to other side. And in many cases, they don’t even own that peace of coast, it is only near their possession.

To make things more interesting in many cases this people are foreign citizens! So, I hope the picture of urge is becoming more clear now. The Istrian coast is very attractive, not only for their beauty, but also because it is not overcrowded. But things will change in the future if we continue in this direction. Building expansion is terrific and under pressure of building lobbies which want to sell apartments, in most cases they are not respecting ethical, esthetical, environmental or other criteria: taking advantage over hesitation of local authorities(who are often incompetent and easily corrupted), complexity of Croatian law in this area, slow jurisdiction system, social momentum, economical situation…

New Croatian government has promised to take control over this subject, that will strike on illegally built constructions, they have formed special expert group, so we put our hope that they may be successfully in resolving this problem. We also hope that consciousness of ordinary people will raise, that they will develop more faith in them selves, and that way be able to bring positive change to the community. This and other articles serves for that purpose.
At the end I would like to indicate an excellent article(In Croatian) on the Istra – OnLine about this topic.

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