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Zlarin island to receive a completely new content tied to recognition of red coral

  22. April 2022.

Contract for the public procurement of a permanent exhibition for the Croatian Coral Center Zlarin was signed today by Željko Burić, the mayor of Šibenik, and Ivana Katurić, the director of the company Urbanex d.o.o. from Split, whose subcontractor is the company Alfa Vision BV from Belgium. The value of the contract is HRK 2,898,990.00 without VAT, and the deadline for contract execution is 7 months.

The procurement procedure for the permanent exhibition was initiated through the Electronic Public Procurement System (EOJN) in August of last year. The procurement included the design of the permanent exhibition, the preparation of documentation necessary for the implementation of the exhibition (execution and workshop drawings), as well as the supply, transport, and installation of all designed elements, along with user training for operating the system. In addition to representatives of the City of Šibenik, experts in the fields of architecture, coral conservation, and museology participated in the review and evaluation of bids.

The selection criterion was the economically most advantageous offer, with the price of the bid evaluated as the financial criterion (40%), and quality evaluated as the non-financial criterion (60%). Interested economic entities were required to prepare their offers in accordance with the project task, which specified all the requirements and evaluation elements, such as the quality of the design, the way the message of coral and other endangered species conservation is interpreted, a high level of visitor interaction with the exhibition, a variety of visitor experiences, a balanced thematic composition of the exhibition (corals, coral conservation, coral farming, nature conservation, natural and cultural heritage, and the history and tradition of the island of Zlarin), a balanced use of multimedia, sculptures, and other displayed objects, an innovative presentation suitable for the project task, including audio and video content, sculptures, installations, paintings, drawings, photographs, and more, the fluidity of visitor movement, and the quality of presenting the topic of coral conservation and the island of Zlarin through multimedia and interactive elements.

The signing of the contract for the public procurement of the permanent exhibition for the Croatian Coral Center Zlarin was attended by Petar Mišura, the Head of the Administrative Department for Economy, Entrepreneurship, and Development of the City of Šibenik, who emphasized that this year is marked by the completion of three major projects: Integrated Mobility in the Šibenik area, the completion of works on the St. John’s Fortress, and the Croatian Coral Center Zlarin, which is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

“As part of the Croatian Coral Center Zlarin project, we have previously had public procurements for construction works. We have also procured a ship and vehicles. Finally, what remained and, in my opinion, is the most important in terms of attracting visitors and providing new content to the island, is the permanent exhibition. The procurement process took a relatively long time because, as is often the case in the city of Šibenik, we chose the more challenging path in order to obtain the highest quality solution. We hope that this exhibition will fulfill its purpose because the success of the Center depends precisely on the visitor dimension and the impressions that guests will take with them. It is often thought that this is a museum exhibition, which is entirely wrong. It is an exhibition for visitors in which the protection of nature is emphasized, without ignoring, but rather respecting and valorizing the rich history of Zlarin, its cultural heritage, and numerous artists associated with Zlarin, such as Vesna Parun, or those connected to the island,” said Petar Mišura, the Head of the Administrative Department.

According to Mayor Burić, the signing of the contract indicates the successful completion of the European investment cycle, which included significant projects of great importance for Šibenik.

“I am particularly pleased that Zlarin is getting a completely new content that connects the island to what it has been recognized for decades, and that is red coral. The presentation of Zlarin’s richness and its tradition will contribute to the life of the island in its authentic form throughout the year, which is our goal, not just during the tourist season,” emphasized Mayor Burić, congratulating the selected consortium entrusted with creating the permanent exhibition, and expressing his belief that the permanent exhibition of the Croatian Coral Center Zlarin will become a new attraction for Zlarin and the city of Šibenik.

Expressing gratitude for the trust placed in them, Ivana Katurić, the director of the selected Split-based company Urbanex, specialized in urbanism, culture, and European funds, reminded that the innovative permanent exhibition of the Croatian Coral Center Zlarin will be of high European standards.

“The exhibition is designed in a way that reinterprets the history of the island, its lived heritage of the relationship with coral, the life of the specific locality and its people, while also emphasizing an entirely new dimension of climate change and the current situation of both coral and the Adriatic Sea as a whole. It serves as an incubator for natural heritage, a nursery for new ideas, and a completely new type of interpretive center that, in collaboration with scientific research institutions, enables exactly what the mayor emphasized, which is the revitalization of life on Zlarin, the perspective of year-round use of the island, and a perspective that extends beyond the exhibition itself, activating multiple dimensions of the island. That was the basic guiding thought in developing this conceptual solution. Another equally innovative dimension is the idea of kinetic sculptures, a concept of an exhibition that is not just an interpretive center providing information but reaches a level of providing emotions. It is an attempt to provide visitors with the sensibility that the island possesses, the value of exceptional cultural, historical, and natural heritage, and to motivate them to return and stay on Zlarin during periods when there are not only traditional tourist offerings. Likewise, the goal is to target niches that are much broader than traditional tourism, providing specific educational aspects and opening segments that connect natural heritage and poetry. We hope that, with the help of the local community and all those in Šibenik who have pushed ambitious and good projects forward, we will establish a completely new type of interpretive center, a completely new type of exhibition, not only at the Croatian level but that we will succeed in presenting this innovation at the European level,” concluded Ivana Katurić, the director of Urbanex.

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