Rovinj Succeeds in Winning Case and Removing ATM from Old Town

Lauren Simmonds

For a while now, numerous historic Croatian cities have been fighting with no less than cash machines. The unsightly ATMs have been being placed in old towns and have caused quite the stir. Dubrovnik was one city with a battle on its hands, but it is far from the only one, and Rovinj has experienced a significant ”win”.

As Novac writes on the 19th of October, 2019, an ATM has been successfully removed from the facade of the House of Culture building in Rovinj, more specifically from the ground floor used by Konzum. It might seem like a small feat, but this successful ATM removal in the Istrian city of Rovinj is in actual fact quite impressive, as the ATM was installed in a window from which the view looks directly out at a cultural monument – Balbi’s arch, otherwise, the busiest entrance and exit from the old town of Rovinj, writes Glas Istre.

The removal of ATMs is the result of the Decision on the municipal order of the City of Rovinj and the Directorate for the protection of cultural heritage of the Ministry of Culture concerning the general criteria for the installation of ATMs in protected historic centres in Croatia.

Otherwise, there are fifty such ATMs registered in the cultural and historical centre of Rovinj alone, and 39 of them have seen requests submitted for site approval, ie, for the proper permission to set them up.

The problem of “too many” ATMs in their cumbersome metal boxes has escalated this past tourist season not only because of their abundance, but also because of the locations in which they have been placed – from windows and doors, to facades and windows on various old buildings.

When it comes to ATMs on private property, and depending on the agreement between the property’s owner and the owner of the ATM, the monthly “rent” for an ATM to be placed there was from two to ten thousand kuna.

The City of Rovinj was among the first on the coast to attempt to deal with all those who do not have a permit for the placement of an ATM, that is, explicit written approval from the city’s municipal utility department and the consent of the conservator, to set it up. Therefore, the criteria by which an ATM permit can be obtained is clearly stated, and anyone not adhering to it will likely see their machines removed, as has been the case with this one.

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