Joško Stella on Tourism Capacity Study in Split: We Don’t Want to be Dubrovnik, Barcelona…

Daniela Rogulj

The study will reveal how many tourists Split can endure, when the city has reached its peak, and how much time is left to take measures.

The Tourist Board of the Split-Dalmatia County commissioned a scientific study of tourism capacities made by scientists from the Zagreb Institute of Tourism. The study will be used to reveal if tourism in the county has become overwhelming, i.e. excessive tourism, which does not follow the balanced development of the infrastructure and leads to reducing the quality of life, delivery of services and customer satisfaction in the county, reports Vecernji List on April 4, 2018. 

“We have commissioned a capacity study to avoid being in the position of Dubrovnik, Berlin, Barcelona and other cities that need radical action to resolve the situation. This study will help us plan tourism more strategically. We have adopted the main development plan for tourism from 2017 to 2027, in which the strategic goal is sustainable tourism development, with an emphasis on maximizing profits or benefits for the local population. Sustainable tourism development is the only way to have long-term competitive tourism and to have long-term competitive tourism; we must not be overwhelmed. We must not have too many tourists who will endanger the infrastructure, the local population, the natural resources and everything that is crucial to us for tourism. We do not want tourism to grow unmanaged,” says Joško Stella, the director of the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board.

He says that despite the crowds, for example in Makarska, Trogir, and even more so in Split, we are not in a situation where we should be afraid that the number of tourists will reach the maximum limit. 

“These limits are certainly not reached, but we will see how much space we still have before we get there. This allows a time frame where we can take certain measures. The Tourist Board does not take measures themselves; we are here to warn. No one will be happy if tourism starts to fall. We are now growing, and we will soon reach the top – and this study will give an answer as to when. We will postpone reaching the maximum limit so quickly if we create a real sustainable development strategy where growth will be slower, but people will be more satisfied. If the local population is not satisfied with tourism, then the tourists will be unsatisfied,” Stella says.

The study, which began on August 4, 2017, has analyzed the beaches, boaters, marinas, and islands. 

“For three and a half hours by plane, they recorded the area to make sure that they could see what goes on in the heart of the tourist season. They then checked water and electricity capacities for insight into what needs to be done the following day so that it could endure the expected crowds,” Stella says.

Stella stressed that the study will reveal another important thing, and that is how much workforce is still needed in the area. 

“This is the first step – and what measures will we propose, it’s too early to say,” says Stella. 

The study will be completed in May. Split-Dalmatia County is the first to conduct such a review, and Stella emphasizes that this should have been done by all other counties, including the Republic of Croatia of Croatia as a whole, to ensure better quality and sustainable tourism for tomorrow.

Translated from Vecernji List


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