OCTOBER 11 2007 13:39h

Mayor: I Will Not Build Stadium at That Cost


I am not that insanely brave to sign a contract for the construction of a stadium at that cost, Mayor Milan Bandic said.

As was to be expected, Zagreb Mayor Milan Bandic found himself in front of a firing squad during question time at the City Assembly session that focused on problems in Zagreb lately.

Democratic Centre’s Josko Moric wanted to know how the city was planning to co-finance the construction of the Maksimir Stadium, which, if the lowest offer is accepted, will cost 4.35 billion kuna.

Bandic responded recalling that he had been the first to contest the demolition of the stadium and construction from scratch, adding his head spun when he had heard of the numbers.

-Bandic will never sign for the completion of the stadium at that cost. Only if a consensus is reached. Because I am not that insanely brave to build that stadium at that cost when 100 million euros have already been invested in it – he said.

-So, you will not sign if the price exceeds four million kuna? – asked Moric, adding that it was not clear to him as to what consensus the mayor was referring to.

-A consensus of the profession, the city government and you – Bandic explained.

You can read more about the construction of the Maksimir Stadium in the article: PHOTO: Maksimir Stadium – World’s Most Expensive 

Abdicating monarch or resignation in democracy? 

Croatian Party of Rights’ Pero Kovacevic said Zagreb had become a city of scandals, cases and nepotism. He said he deemed both the assembly and government responsible and asked the mayor if he would make his mandate available. Bandic stated neither himself nor his administration had caused any scandal in the past month and a half.

-If the Sheraton was ours, we would give that too, so I cannot believe that lawyers are criticising us of being socially insensitive – Bandic said. He added that he had abdicated when he did something stupid six years ago, but that he saw no reason to abdicate at this time.

Kovacevic replied that in democratic societies, it was normal to make available one’s mandate.

-I feel morally responsible for allowing urban plans to be made without geometric testing and then landslides happened – Kovacevic said.

The slightly agitated Bandic lashed out at Kovacevic that he would first have to become mayor before abdicating.

-You are wonderful, you are great, but if you keep working like that, the highest position you will have is assembly vice-president – said Bandic, adding that he made his mandate available to citizens every day.

Kovacevic did not mean to let Bandic have the last say.

-This is democracy, Mr. Mayor and in democracy people make their mandates available. You are not a monarch to abdicate – Kovacevic said.

Social democrat Davor Bernardic said that citizens of Zagreb had been witnesses to disasters and cataclysms in the city, adding that he believed there would be more. He wanted to know about the city’s cooperation with the building inspection and why it was that the inspection went to the site only when something in the city collapses.

The mayor said that the words disaster and cataclysm were too harsh, adding that in contrast to the rest of Croatia, Zagreb had never had problems.

-You know what happened, you all know that very well, but we cannot bring back human lives. Kupska Street, Kvaternikova Street and nada Dimic have a name – not abiding by construction rules – said the mayor.

-Ask the investor in Kupska Street why they did not respect regulations of the profession and ask the investor in Kvaternikova Street why there had been unlicensed excavations – Bandic said, adding everybody had 20-20 hindsight.