Split United: Master Plan for Kopilica and East Coast Presented

Daniela Rogulj

A master plan study was presented in Split on Monday which will revitalize the city’s East Coast and Kopilica area. The master plan was submitted by consultants from the company IC Consulenten from Austria. Split is one of many European cities that have resorted to long-term urban planning, supported by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, which co-financed the project with 600,000 euro, reports Dalmacija Danas on March 18, 2019. 

Victoria Zinchuk, director of EBRD in Croatia, said she was lucky to be in Split today and explained why the EBRD decided to support this project. Zinchuk said that Split has great potential and that ERBD wants this to be only one in a series of projects that they will co-finance. She stressed that this would give a boost to the development of Split and thanked everyone who worked on this project, which required a lot of effort. 

Zinchuk added that they did not see the project as solving traffic congestion but rather creating a chance for the local population to gain new jobs.

James Mathews, a representative of the Austrian company IC Consulenten, said that Split has a lot to offer, and the goal of the project is to permanently increase housing and halt traffic congestion in the city center. He added that Kopilica would thus see a new railway and bus station, and the eastern coast of the city harbor and the airport would be connected by light rail.

From the very beginning, the Ministry of Sea, Transport and Infrastructure has been involved in the project. 

“I am glad that there is interest in this study, which is an initiative for the development of spatial plans and, in the end, launching and realizing large projects in Split. The Ministry participated in the master plan. Without the distribution of traffic in this area it is impossible to accomplish this project. The traffic is most directly related to Kopilica and the East Coast. The Ministry prepared a whole series of transport projects that will ultimately contribute to the realization of all this.

The project of the fast road from Trogir to Omiš is ongoing. It is necessary to make a link from Solin to Podstrana and bypass Omiš. The agglomeration of about 300,000 inhabitants will be connected to one whole, and this is, after the Pelješac Bridge, the largest Croatian road construction project.

Apart from that, a whole range of projects are being developed, which we will talk about on Tuesday. Finally, the airport will be connected to Split by rail. In the 1990s, the EBRD participated in the preparation and beginning of realizing the EKO project, which is probably the most significant project implemented in Croatia. Over 300 million euro has been withdrawn, and it is my pleasure to see the gentlemen from the ERBD. I want this master plan to be the initiative of the future development of Split and the driver of all spatial plans that will lead to the realization of all the content that should be made in these two locations,” said State Secretary Tomislav Mihotić.

The mayor of Split, Andro Krstulović Opara, did not hide his satisfaction. 

“Our generation, your generation does not have the luxury to miss this. That is why this public hearing, which will last five to six weeks, with all of the workshops, is an excellent opportunity to perform tasks among different generations. I was critical of some of my predecessors, but I do not think I’m smarter than them. We have just taken advantage of the exceptional circumstances that have given us membership in the European Union and we are using the benefits of this unity.

The EBRD provided us with this great opportunity we decided to use. This plan is concentrated on several goals. The main goal is to achieve a city of the future that is concentrated on the future of young families and job creation, but also the changing structure of our city. We are talking about traffic, creating a new space for business and taking advantage of opportunities using examples from Vienna and London, who have achieved excellent results for their citizens with their knowledge.

Split is positioned as the center of the eastern Adriatic Coast and deserves what was here at the beginning of my address, and this is a common approach to thinking about the future that will have the same amount of time for the next few decades. Openness is something we want to see. Our cooperation and responsibility towards the generation in front of us is expected to be the best.

We want a Mediterranean city of the future, we want to create a whole host of benefits for young families to concentrate on raising their families here. We are planning on more than 20,000 jobs in this project. This is a generational step we can, want and and will use,” the mayor said.

I am convinced that by presenting this plan, by the quality of our experts, and by the public, which is invited to participate, we will not miss this, but we will take the opportunity. It’s time – right now! I can see on your face that you are waiting to accomplish this goal, which we have presented in a contemporary way. United Split – Split united,” mayor Krstulović Opara finished his address.

The master plan, among other things, defines new tourism and residential properties. On the East Coast, the construction of residential buildings, hotels, and garages on several levels are planned. The East Coast would be “a place to preserve and enhance the historical significance of UNESCO heritage and a new place of residence for the local population.”

In Kopilica, a new cargo port (RoRO) is planned for automobile transportation to the islands, but also a new waterfront or promenade and a tunnel below Bačvice. As a measure to retain inhabitants in the city, they plan to build 8,984 apartments in Kopilica and 286 apartments on the East Coast. The aim is to bring 19,764 inhabitants to Kopilica and 629 to the East Coast. 

The bridge across the Kaštela bay was considered a “long-term national project” that ensures access to the port in Kopilica from the state road. There would also be residential buildings, shops, rest areas, parks, and catering facilities along the coast. 

Unlike the past development vision, where this area was viewed only as a transit hub, it will now become a “modern neighborhood that has housing, education, a business center, and public, entertainment and tourist facilities.”

You can see a photo gallery for the plans at Kopilica and the East Coast at Splitski Dnevnik. More details to come. 

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