Construction Minister: Prefab Homes as Lasting Solution in Quake-Hit Area

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Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons

Asked by the press if the reconstruction of Sisak-Moslavina County would be incorporated into the law on the post-earthquake reconstruction of Zagreb, Horvat said a decree to that effect was being finalised and that the government would address it on Thursday.

The decree will make it possible for the Zagreb reconstruction law to apply to Karlovac and Sisak-Moslavina counties, and also to submit applications and define decisions on those entitled to reconstruction without losing any time, he added.

“Most importantly, it will enable regulating the payment of temporary accommodation for those who will be entitled to it.”

Asked when the reconstruction of houses would begin, Horvat said some documents were commissioned today, including data on how buildings react during an earthquake.

He announced for tomorrow a meeting with Croatian manufacturers who could participate in making prefab homes as a lasting solution in the area struck by a magnitude 6.2 tremor last Tuesday.

Experts from the faculties of civil engineering, geodesy and architecture have to make a project so that replacement homes can be commissioned, Horvat said, adding that regardless of dimensions, all must have the same earthquake-resistant foundation.

He said everything must be ready as soon as possible for construction to begin, adding that part of his ministry would be relocated to Sisak or Petrinja.

Horvat said the decree the government would adopt on Thursday would make it possible to include Sisak-Moslavina and Karlovac counties in the contracting of works for the reconstruction of schools, hospitals and other public buildings.

Asked to comment on the dissatisfaction of the mayors of Petrinja and Sisak with the distribution of HRK 120 million worth of emergency aid, he said the money was allocated after the first damage estimates.

He said almost 700 structural engineers were currently on the ground and that the next amounts would be distributed based on more detailed damage estimates.

Horvat dismissed “any suspicion” that the damage was estimated “with partisan or political connotations. “The damage was estimated on the ground by the only people who can do it.”

As for assistance from international institutions and the EU, he said applications for money from the European Solidarity Fund should be prepared in the next 12 weeks, after the total damage was estimated.

In the meantime, he added, the government has managed to communicate that the 5.1 billion received after the Zagreb quake may be utilised to deal with the damage in Sisak-Moslavina County.

Investigations into poorly rebuilt houses

Asked if anyone would be held to account for the fact that the earthquake demolished houses in Sisak-Moslavina County which were rebuilt after the war, Horvat said there would be investigations after talks were held with all those responsible from that time.

He said the central state office for reconstruction had reliable data and that it was pointless to accuse anyone “until we are 100% sure of what happened and who the stakeholders were.”


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