On the verge of collapse and never more neglected Zabljak this summer has a record visit of tourists. About the preparations for the nest, winter season they are still not thinking because now no one can deal with the lack of water, explosion of wild construction, traffic jams, bad road infrastructure, and facades which are falling off. When you add to that the imp of new owners of hotels and ski centers which are getting bigger profit without fulfilling the minimum of the obligation which they have taken over during the privatization tourists are left only to enjoy in the nature which is becoming less and less intact.
– We in the capital of the mountain tourism live only from the name and what apparently God has given to us, and what we didn’t deserve. All winter centers in the surrounding are getting much better and we are sinking deeper every day – say people from Zabljak.
It is hard to find accommodation on Zabljak and those who have booked it in advance are facing the water restrictions the first day when they come.
– The lack of water is not a consequence of draught but instead it is the consequence of numerous houses and weekend homes which were constructed without a permit and whose owners are plugging themselves in the city waterworks. Capacities which were planned in 1987 for that number of citizens have been overcome years ago. More than 20 years passed and nothing has been done for those capacities to be improved – said for Vijesti director of Zabljak Tourist organization Darko Stijepovic.
As a paradigm of wilderness his is citing the lodgment Prisoje where about 200 houses were built almost one over the other. In Moticki gaj and in the entire way towards the ski path Savin kuk, even in the zone of the National park it is impossible to quickly count the weekend houses which in certain places are found on the road itself. The same situation is found in Pitomine where the Russians, Irish and Englishmen have bought all the best locations.
President of the Municipality Isailo Sljivancanin said that the city area has minor restrictions from 23 p.m. until 6 a.m.
Surrounding villages and suburb lodgments have some more serious restrictions, but we should point out that all facilities in those lodgments have been wildly built and that none of them has paid their taxes to Municipality so they have no right to object anything. We have made the waterworks for about 1.000 citizens and that number is 10.000. in order for us to make new capacities all new comers on Zabljak have to pay their duties to Municipality. We are making plan documentation and we will try to legalize as many facilities as we can, and to ask from them to pay their taxes. Even without that we shall work on finding new sources of water supply and we shall solve that during this fall – said Sljivncanin.
Biggest disappointment people from Zabljak experienced from their countrymen Savo Kujundzic who under the firm Hotel management Durmitor has bought hotels Zabljak, jezera, restaurant Momcilov grad, ski paths Stuoc, the farm Jezero and the butcher house.
– Since he bought them, for almost four years he didn’t even change the furniture. They bought that cheap, and now they are waiting for the deadline for renewal of the hotel which is predicted by the contract to expire and to sell that for a much bigger price. It is strange that the Government is not taking any actions on that issue, because only Government can question the fulfillment of obligations. In the meantime, ski infrastructure in the winter season is on the verge of collapse. North side of Durmitor, Pitomina, and Stuoc are inactive and when so far nothing has been done they surely won’t do anything next year – claims Steijepovic,
Why that is so we have tried to get the answer from director of HMD Vlado Kujundzic who directed us to the chief of sale Aleksandra Vukovic, and who, as he said, “is in charge of public relations”. Vukovic negated that saying that she is only in charge of publishing of records about the number of tourists who are staying in hotels.
– Kujundzic claims that the local administration didn’t allow them to acieve their plans in ruining and construction of new hotel Zabljak. Now the plan documentation has been changed and they can do that, but they aren’t starting anything. If it is true that the municipality has been creating them problems with Zabljak why they haven’t renewed jezera. We mustn’t let Kujundzic family to do with Zabljak what they want. Besides, it is symptomatic that the ex president of the municipality has left that position after he got the job in HMD said Stijepovic.
Mayor Sljivncanin says that they are working on preparations for the next season and for the better reception of guests and points out that until December 15th new mall and the kindergarten will be finished, and in the next ten days they will finish the reconstruction of the road Pluzine – Zabljak through Durmitor. He points out that HTE Primorje next year will tear down hotel Planinka and will built a new luxurious hotel in the same place. However the situation with Kujundzic family is not clear.
– I don’t know what the contract says and we don’t have any communication with them. I hear that they had the obligation to invest in hotels, but so far nothing has been seen. HMD claims that a part of the square is theirs and they claim that with the purchase of Zabljak they have bought the space, which is now used as the city parking lot. We will try to change that inscription in cadastre in a legitimate way – said Sljivancanin.
On the other hand Kolasin is grabbing with huge steps forward. After an extremely successful summer season, town is quickly getting prepared for the winter season. The main city square is being renewed as well as the back streets. Majority of hotels has improved their accommodation, and on December 1st company Beppler and Jacobson which owns Bianca will open the doors of the new hotel Lipka, and starting from the next week Kolasin will start the first preparations for the reconstruction of the ski center, roads and electrical system.
– That was also felt on the market of real estate, so the price of a square meter on the way towards the ski path has reached 150, and in the town the price is 300 euros per square meter.
Deputy of director of TO Kolasin Dijana Milosevic said that the basic problem of Kolasin is small number of beds, which, together with the unregistered bed they have about 800.
– We were forced to send guests in the unregistered facilities only not to reject them. Another problem is the lack of tourist signals. How to explain to a foreigner where is Svardak. For the next season we have printed the propaganda material, and have made a DVD presentation. We are making a site of TO Kolasin – said Milosevic. To the ski center which, after 8 years of bankruptcy and 5 nullified tenders has been privatized at the end of March and which, according to the words of the new manager Milos Medenica will be called New ski center Beppler and Jacobson you still have to go down the road full of holes which are very often even more than 50 cm deep. Guards that are found at the entrance since May 1st do not allow the entrance to those who want toe have a stroll or who want to go with a shortcut towards the eco summer pasture Vranjak on Bjelasica.
– With some concrete activities we will start at the beigning of the week. We shall do the repair of the road, which is in a bad shape, and we shall do the entire repair of 6 km of long distance electrical line. At the same time we will do the repair of the funicular railway with four ski lifts. Both restaurants will be renewed. Entire ski center will be refreshed and brought into condition that it can function during the upcoming winter season. We are planning to replace all electrical pillars. Two snow presses will be sent to Italy to be rapiers and we have bought one more. Policy of the firm is that the paths have to be in great condition and extremely well prepared and that will not depend from the number of guests – as it was the case so far – said Medenica.
INSPECTIONS ARE TURNING THEIR HEADS AWAY
Long time director of the National park and the owner of the hotel Javor Mile Stijepovc says that Zabljak was caught unready and that it had received a large number of tourists not prepared and that that will be the case during the winter too.
– Zabljak never had more guests than now, but is also never had more disorder. That, mainly refers to traffic jams and the lack of parking lots. Along with that the road infrastructure is bad in all possible senses, wild construction is more and more growing and Zabljak at the moment has only two facilities which are being constructed legally – the kindergarten and the market. Not even the works on the road Risan – Zabljak are going as expected. We have good laws, and sufficient number of inspectors to suppress the wild construction, but the inspections are turning their heads away from the works which are done by powerful men, and certain businessmen are building up to 20 weekend houses. The preparations for the winter season should begin. Already now we have to have a precise image of how the roads will be maintained during the winter. The state should form a commission and should establish what’s happening with the hotels that have been privatized – said Stijepovic.
GRBOVIC FOR YEARS HASN’T PAID THE ELECTRICITY
The phone on the bus station which was owned by former Ski center Durmitor is not in function for over 5 years. For the New ski center as that enterprise was renamed by the owner Radovan Grbovic, against which there is still a legal process in court being conducted, many claim that it only represents a machine for earning money.
It is not familiar who is the owner, nor is he registered, and it is functioning as entirely legitimate enterprise. It is not paying any taxes, electricity and water it hasn’t paid for years. Ski path Savin kuk has been made without any permit and even today the company is not paying any compensation either to Municipality or to NP. Funicular railway is now in function, but it is operating with the gear which has been produced 15 20 years ago – said Darko Stijepovic. Grbovic did not wish to give a comment for Vijesti.