The local population stands firmly against the construction of a large marina with 190 wet berths, demanding for a smaller port to be built instead
Vodice City Council adopted a new Master plan for the construction of a new marina with 190 wet berths in Prvić Šepurina on Prvić island. All eight councilors of the ruling HDZ-HSS coalition voted for the plan, while the other seven abstained, reports Slobodna Dalmacija on October 31, 2017.
While the City Council might have voted in favour of the plan, another group of people has been very vocal opposing the project: the residents of Prvić Šepurina, assembled in the association ‘Tumultuous Prvić’ (Burni Prvić). Around a hundred local residents staged a protest in front of the City hall before the council session, expressing their disapproval of the construction of a large marina. They demand for a project smaller in scale, a communal port at the Perolin pier that would house 80 wet berths at most. The residents appealed to the councilors to vote according to their own moral sense, not as their party relations call for.
“We are in favour of a communal marina with additional berths for tourists, a marina that would enable the local authorities or certain sports societies in Šepurina to collect fees for the berths, so the resulting revenue could stay in the village budget. If a certain investor from Turkey, Russia or any other country ends up building a commercial marina, the only income to stay in Šepurina will be the salaries for the cleaning staff that will be scrubbing the toilets. We are opposing construction of a large marina, but we stand in favour of a small one that would be financed by the European Union, not by the mafia’s money”, said Branimir Vlahov at the protest.
The action was supported by MP Miro Bulj (MOST) who stated that Prvić is experiencing the same issue as the Golden Cape and Makarska. “Everything that’s located on the coast and that is part of maritime property needs to develop in favour of the local self-government, not a certain stakeholder group. We need to protect nature, the environment and our coast. There are projects that would preserve a large part of the coast, and we can’t allow for it to get covered in concrete”, Bulj said at the protest.
The opposing councilors asked the creators of the Master plan for further explanation, claiming the project isn’t in line with the County spatial plan. Considering that the residents of Šepurina haven’t been asked for their opinion, the councilors proposed a referendum.
Conservators do not support the new Master plan either. Marko Menđušić of the Conservation Department in Šibenik stated the project is unacceptable in its current form. “The construction of a marina on the northern side of Šepurina entails substantial interventions both at sea and on land; this will result in considerable alterations to the landscape of Prvić island which is a protected cultural good”, said Menđušić.
On the other hand, Vodice Mayor Nelka Tomić stated the plan was created in accordance with the legal regulations. This was confirmed by Ivana Bojić of Geoprojekt, the company that made the Master plan which entails the construction of a large marina on the island. According to Bojić, the plan was approved by the Ministry of Construction and Spatial Planning, and is supposedly in line with the County spatial plan that was previously adopted by the Ministry of Construction and the Ministry of Culture.
The residents’ voice again falls on deaf ears, and it’s only safe to assume the local population will end up getting the short end of the stick.