As Barbara Ban/Novac writes on the 17th of February, 2020, the public tender for the selection of the construction works company to be held in Mali Brijun is underway until February the 21st, 2020, and it concerns the renovation of seven ground-floor structures. These are currently abandoned buildings that will be renovated for education and research as part of the EU’s New Brijuni Project.
According to the Brijuni National Park public institution, in the bay of Sv. Mikula, where the former military dormitories used to be, there will be a new complex, the purpose of which will be primarily educational and for research purposes. The newly renovated one-storey buildings will be intended for the accommodation of pre-school, school and university groups, non-governmental organisations, artists, scientists, as well as for all those who wish to carry out educational programmes on the island of Mali Brijun, such as nature schools and cultural programmes etc.
The four buildings will be converted into dormitories that will have a total of eighteen hostel-type rooms with eighty beds with bunk beds, ranging in size from one hundred to 180 square metres, with shared or separate bathrooms. Part of one of these buildings will be an information (info) point, while the rest will house a kitchen with a restaurant with about fifty seats, a storage room and a janitor’s space. In addition to the new recruitments that will follow the reconstruction, the said activity will contribute to a significant expansion of the Brijuni National Park’s offer for excursion tourism as Mali Brijun is currently closed to visitors, except for certain announced groups.
“The planned value of the works and equipment in Mali Brijun comes to a total of 8.5 million kuna, and it is divided into two procurement procedures. The ongoing tender includes construction works, that is, the reconstruction of facilities, worth 7.3 million kuna, followed by a tender for the equipping and the interior design of dormitories and hospitality facilities and an accompanying kitchen, for which 1.2 million kuna are set aside and foreseen. We expect all of the works to be completed in 2021,” said Masha Mihelic.
The key infrastructure prerequisite for the beginning of reconstruction of these facilities on beautiful Mali Brijun was the renovation/rehabilitation of the old access pier for cargo vessels, which collapsed due to severe storms, which prevented the preparation and implementation of this significant project activity. Work on the reconstruction of that Austro-Hungarian pier is underway and should be completed by late spring.
The island’s revitalisation is part of the activities of the New Brijuni Project co-financed under the “Competitiveness and Cohesion 2014-2020” operational programme from the European Regional Development Fund and the Environmental and Energy Efficiency Fund. “Novo ruho Brijuna” is one of the projects involving national parks and nature parks that has been successfully submitted to the competition of the Ministry of Regional Development and EU Funds, and “Promoting the sustainable use of natural heritage in national parks and nature parks” and has been being actively implemented since back in October 2017.
The total value of the project is set at a maximum of 41.7 million kuna. The total eligible costs of the project are 32.1 million kuna, of which 27.2 million kuna has been awarded from the European Regional Development Fund, ie 85 percent of the total eligible costs. The remaining eligible costs were co-financed with funds from the Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency Fund in the amount of 3.2 million kuna, while the funds in the amount of 1.6 million kuna were co-financed by Brijuni National Park’s public institution.
In order to increase the mobility and availability of new facilities on the island of Mali Brijun, a new passenger ship with a capacity for 150 passengers is under construction at Tehnomont Shipyard Pula, whose handover and launch is expected in mid-2021. With more frequent shipping to the islands, the new shallow-draft catamaran that will be able to dock at Mali Brijun will enable the realisation of a completely new offer for visitors.
This is also in line with the aforementioned project, the overall aim of which is to improve the management of Brijuni National Park with the principles of the sustainable use of natural heritage with the aim of socio-economic development of the local community through the development of visitor infrastructure and attractive tourist facilities, thus raising the level of visitors’ knowledge about the importance of natural heritage. Additionally, with the aim of presenting the geotourism potential of Mali Brijun, equipment for a tour of the educational footpath called Brijuni Stone Stories will also be purchased.
The other most significant, already realised, activity of the entire project for Brijuni is the procurement and establishment of a new info point in Veliki Brijun with an interactive screen presenting all of Brijuni’s attractions and the procurement of two homologated tourist trains that allow sightseeing of the island for people in wheelchairs.
The New Brijuni Project includes various promotional and marketing activities, such as market research and analysis, branding strategy, media advertising, the production of promotional videos, brochures, leaflets, multilingual guides etc.