Good practices presentations in Slovenia on the topic of Environment & Sustainability
For the first time since september 2019, the partners of STAR Cities met again during a physical seminar held on October 5-6 2021 hosted by the Regional Development Agency of the Ljubljana Urban Region (RRA LUR). The event focused on « Environment & Sustainability » and was organized in the continuity of a virtual session in April.
Study visits were scheduled in the Slovenian capital Ljubljana as well as its region to illustrate good practices presented virtually first.
The partners of STAR Cities attended the event along with a group of their stakeholders : the Val-de-Marne Tourism Board, the Lazio Region, the Municipality IX EUR of Rome, the City of Hamburg, Kaunas 2022, European Capital of Culture and NECSTouR. Representatives from the RRA LUR were also present throughout the two-day event and brought several stakeholders during specific visits.
Ljubljana, a green capital
The seminar kicked-off with a “Green tour” of Ljubljana city centre arranged by Visit Ljubljana to illustrate the recognition of the city as « European Green Capital » in 2016. Considered as one of the most sustainable tourism destinations in the world, the city has managed to preserve its green character. The historical city centre is car-free and devoted to pedestrians and other forms of sustainable mobility such as small electric vehicles.
Ljubljana also became the first European capital to move towards zero waste in 2014 and is considered one of Europe’s recycling leaders thanks to a plan of modernisation of its waste management infrastructure started in 2011.
On the way through green Ljubljana, other features were presented such as the layout of the embankments recently redesigned including various rest areas by the river, the construction of bridges to better connect the city for pedestrians and cyclists, and also the Bicikelj bike-sharing system.
Exploring the Ljubljanica river
On Tuesday evening, the group went on a cruise on the Ljubljanica river that stretches through the capital. The river used to be the main traffic and transport connection of the area at the beginning of the 20th century. Today, visitors can enjoy a boat ride to observe the many landscapes of Ljubljana.
Ljubljansko Barje and the Ljubljana Marshes
Day two of the seminar was entirely dedicated to a tour of the Ljubljansko Barje Nature Park, located at the doorstep of Ljubljana, thanks to Masa Bratina from the Ljubljansko Barje Nature Park Public Institute. The area is well-known for its rich biodiversity, including a unique mosaic landscape made of wet grasslands : the Ljubljana Marshes, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List for its unique features. This exceptional area of nature contains nature reserves, natural monuments and numerous endangered wildlife plants and animals as well as protected species.
During the day, we visited different points of interest throughout the park : the viewing platform of Podkraj, the lake of Podpeško Jezero, Borovnica and its viaduct, Bistra and the Močilnik Springs known as the source of the Ljublanica river.
The program also included a visit of the exhibition centre Moja Ljubljanica, dedicated to the natural and cultural heritage of the Ljubljanica River and its surroundings. The riverbed is one of the most important archaeological sites of Slovenia and the museum displays a vast selection of items discovered since prehistoric times.
Finally, all the partners and their stakeholders gathered for a closing discussion. They reflected on the 2-day seminar in Ljubljana and expressed their wishes in terms of actions they could input in their territories in the near future.
On Tuesday afternoon, partners and their stakeholders took part in a workshop to to reflect on the first phase of the project and to think of the future of the collaboration. Led by Miša Novak, our facilitator on the project, partners worked divided into thematic groups to try to define food for thought.