APRIL 30 2007 15:25h
730 million kun were invested last year; the plan dropped to 430 million this year but the budget is even 300 million kuna short.
When you go to the seaside this summer you will not have to worry about finding great traffic jams upon returning home to Zagreb because of road construction or reconstruction. Although traffic is a priority issue of the City of Zagreb, during summer work season- almost half of the amount will be invested into capital traffic solutions this year.
Bandic is not breaking the record this year
While 730 million kuna were invested into roads last year, this year, 430 million kuna are planned to be spent. For the fist time the city government, ever since Milan Bandic is at its head, did not break its road construction record from the previous year.
The amount of 430 million kuna still sounds fairly large, but when the profession speaks – the situation is not optimistic. The construction programme which we received from the City reveals that even around 80 million kuna will be spent on minor constructions of about 70 streets – what the mayor himself would call ornamenting.
Our trustworthy source from the City reveals another defeating fact, the budget is somewhere between 250 and 300 million kuna short for this year`s road construction plan.
Management has over calculated
We unofficially found out that heads of city departments fear whether they will manage to fulfil the plan and to raise additional 150 to 170 million kuna from the expensification of utility services payments, which would cover the holes in the budget.
Even if this plan is fulfilled, the already tested recipe of delaying payments to work performers from six to ten months will have to be conducted, which is a benchmark dead-line. Shortage of money occurred this year because Milan Bandic and his management have over calculated, and the have to pay for works that were conducted last year from this year`s budget.
What is more, they postponed some payments via banks until 2008 even, which was criticised by the opposition during the past assembly sittings.
In order for the real extent of cutting back road construction investment to be seen, it is enough to look at this year`s capital objects and compare them to last year. Largest last year`s investments were expansion of Lubljanska Avenue (170 million kuna), Savska opatovina traffic node (110 million kuna), the New Jankomir bridge (87 million kuna), first phase of the Sveucilisna (University) Avenue (47 million kuna), Skorpikova (40 million kuna); around 30 million kuna was spent on the reconstruction of the old Jankomir bridge, Sarajevska st. reconstruction, a part of the connecting road from the Homeland bridge and the bypass, Sava-Odra viaduct and Branimirova st. up to the Zavrtnica centre. Reconstruction of Ljudevit Posavski st. amounted to 20 million kuna and a whole line of roundabouts, reconstructions and intersections were constructed for an amount lesser than that.
This year`s miserly investments
As opposed to that, this year the largest investment which was supposed to be finalised is Radnicka st., from Slavonska Avenue up to the Kanalski put (170 million), but this investment was commenced in July last year and it will be paid from the 2008 budget. The first investment in line is the reconstruction of streets around the rearranged Kvaternik Square for 99.5 million kuna, and the third largest investment, for 15 million kuna, will be of Nova Ves st.
Trnjanska st. reconstruction will amount to 10 million kuna and after it, nothing will exceed the value of 10 million kuna, including the partial reconstruction of the Baruna Filipovica st., expansion of Hrvatske Bratske Zajednice st. in front of The University Library, Zupanciceva st., a part of Zeleni val st. and Bastijanova st.
Book of successes from 2006
In road construction, larger capital objects might be linked with the reconstruction of the Dom sportova sports hall, but this plan has not yet been accepted and it is hard to expect that the works will commence this summer. If they do, they will be financed by the Zagreb Holding company, and not the city budget.
It is to be assumed that Zagreb Mayor Milan Bandic will not allow a drop of investing into road construction in an election year, so it was announced that he will probably print a book with successes of 2006. As an ace, he will use the completion of the Homeland bridge which is already late, as well as investing into kindergartens, schools and sports- headed by the Zagreb holding company.