Croatia’s capital Zagreb is the country’s largest and most economically significant city. Located along the Sava river and bordered by the Medvednica mountain and its nature park, Zagreb has rich natural features.
The Living Lab: Sesvete
The Living Lab is within the Sesvete district in the East of Zagreb at the foothills of the Medvednica mountain. With its 70,000 inhabitants, Sesvete has the youngest population in Croatia, and a strong community and entrepreneurial spirit.
Located on various key European traffic routes, Sesvete has an industrial past and present, with a particularly active car and construction industry. Distinctive, tall silo buildings form part of Sesvete’s skyline and industrial heritage. In particular, the site of the former meat-processing factory, Sljeme, is the core of the Living Lab, with green plans in place for the silo buildings themselves and the surrounding areas.
Latest news from Zagreb
Landscape belongs to everyone
17 June 2019
Landscape democracy is about understanding the human as well as the physical elements of a neighbourhood; vegetation, mountains, rivers, buildings, streets, people and even the hidden power structures within a community all play a role in shaping a space and its identity. This was the key concept of the 'Landscape and Democracy workshop session', which took place within the 'Le:Notre Landscape Forum’ held in Zagreb during the week of 9 – 13 April 2019. The session focussed on Sesvete, the proGIreg Living Lab and post-industrial area in the East of the city.
Zagreb to launch Croatia’s first therapeutic urban garden
16 May 2019
Ten years ago, a series of plots of land around ICLEI Member Zagreb (Croatia) were standing unused as they waited for redevelopment. Competition over land in Europe’s capital cities is fierce, and Zagreb is no different. So, in spring 2013, rather than leave the lots derelict, the Mayor of Zagreb opened the spaces up to the public.
Applications flooded in for the open call offering garden lots to citizens who were not already owners or tenants of agricultural land. “There is a tradition of outdoor living and agriculture in the whole of Croatia,” explains Iva Bedenko of Zagreb’s office for strategic planning and development. “The idea of the city gardens is for the citizens to ecologically produce food that they consume later.”
Zagreb co-design takes shape at local Sesvete workshop
20 December 2018
On 3-4 December Zagreb got the ball rolling by hosting its first official Living Lab co-design planning meeting together with local partners and stakeholders. The gathering was large and motivation was high. In the words of Matija Vuger, City of Zagreb: “The shared response was that of enthusiasm and optimism, and all the stakeholders are excited to be included in the further steps of the co-design process.”
Sesvete, Zagreb’s easternmost district, is a fascinating blend of the old and the new. Its unique skyline of tall, abandoned factory buildings, combined with its young, active and entrepreneurial population – which already played a key role in repurposing the post-industrial area into a residential-recreational-commercial neighbourhood – makes Sesvete a highly interesting setting for the proGIreg Living Lab.