The Zagreb plan: 5 mobility facts about the Croatian capital

They're already the soccer vice world champions. But what about mobility in Croatia?

The Croatian national football team around superstar Luka Modric from Real Madrid is one of the surprises of the World Cup in Russia. The players of coach Zlatko Dalic could defeat their opponent twice already in the penalty shoot-out and now demand England in the semi-finals. But what about mobility in Croatia? Can the Eastern Europeans from the Adriatic coast also surprise here? We look at the capital Zagreb.

 

1. Rise of Electro 

The electric super sports cars of our age come from Croatia. At the gates of Zagreb in Sveta Nedelja, Rimac Automobili, founded in 2009, specialises in the production of super sports cars, drives and battery systems in the electrical sector. At the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, founder Mate Rimac presented the "Rimac C_Two" model. A maximum of 150 of these vehicles are to be sold at a sales price of over one million euros. The vehicle has one electric motor per wheel, which together reach 1408 kW (1914 hp) and 2300 Nm. The vehicle should accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 2 seconds and from 0 to 300 km/h in less than 12 seconds. The maximum speed should be 412 km/h. Porsche recently secured a stake in the Croatian startup and is now developing engines for the electric age together with Rimac Automobili.

 

2. Clean and better traffic 

Zagreb is part of the CIVITAS initiative, a network of cities committed to cleaner and better transport in Europe and beyond. Since its creation by the European Commission in 2002, the CIVITAS initiative has tested and implemented over 800 measures and urban transport solutions through demonstration projects in more than 80 living lab cities across Europe. As a modern EU city with around 800,000 inhabitants, Zagreb has to cope with between 1.5 and 2 million trips a day. This is not an easy task. The backbone of the urban transport system is the PT network (trams, buses, funiculars and suburban trains), but a large proportion of journeys are supplemented by individual transport. One reason for this is that the city's network of cycle paths (more than 200 km of cycle paths) is incoherent, although the geographical location of the city offers enormous potential. With CIVITAS ELAN, Zagreb has now defined three main areas: Improving conditions in public transport, building dialogue with citizens and improving and promoting walking and cycling.

 

3. Citizen-oriented organisations for cycling

The number of cyclists in Zagreb has increased significantly in recent years. In addition to the CIVITAS initiative, this increase is due to a very active cycling scene with citizen-oriented organisations that work closely with the city. Whenever there are major road works, the possibility of adding cycle paths is automatically discussed, but this has led to a somewhat scattered and uneven infrastructure within the tourist-dominated city. An integrated cycling policy and a dedicated cycling master plan are therefore needed at the initiative of civil society to exploit the potential of the city. Zagreb's most important strategic document - the Zagreb Plan - contains a section on transport which emphasises and promotes the importance of alternative means of transport such as cycling and hiking in nature and their increasing share in the modal split. This measure will significantly improve cycling conditions, in particular on the Savska Cesta corridor, and strengthen the integration between cycling and public transport.

 

4. Tram with tradition

The Zagreb tramway is the tramway system of the Croatian capital and is operated by the municipal transport company Zagreba?ki elektri?ni tramvaj (ZET). This is also responsible for the local funicular and urban bus services. It was opened as a horse-drawn railway on 5 September 1891. The first route was eight kilometers long and had a track gauge of 760 millimeters. This so-called Bosnian gauge was widespread in the Balkans and is still regarded as a model today. It was converted to a metre gauge in the course of electrification in 1910. Operation was resumed on August 18, 1910 with cars of the Ganz company from Budapest. Since then, the network has continued to develop and is now served by a total of 15 routes. Other popular means of transport on the Adriatic coast are the "Spin City" car-sharing app and the funicular railway, which is the oldest means of transport in the Croatian metropolis of Upper and Lower Town and is frequently used by tourists.

 

5. Prize winner in sustainable mobility

The European Mobility Week Prize (EMW) is awarded to the local authority which, according to the jury, has done the most to raise public awareness of sustainable mobility issues and implement projects aimed at achieving a shift towards sustainable urban transport. As early as 2012, Zagreb was honoured by the EU and described as a "new star in the mobility sky" by the jury. In the final, Zagreb prevailed over 30 entries from 15 countries, including Toulouse from France and Ljutomer from Slovenia, with a strong environmental and citizen dialogue-focused concept.