Funds and cooperation


Rijeka is the bearer of the title European Capital of Culture 2020! It has been over a year since the announcement, but the shock and excitement are still just as real. The size and complexity of this project surpass all projects, cultural and otherwise, that we have ever witnessed in the city and the region. The story of other ECOC cities tells us that this is a huge opportunity to make the city and region internationally visible, and that it can cause a boom in the development of tourism, education, urbanism and investments. And Rijeka is now the city with such an opportunity.

Many things have happened since the announcement. RIJEKA 2020 LLC, the company in charge of managing the project was founded, 75 separate cultural events have been organised, two new festivals started. 27 local initiatives from across the County have been assembled. European funding for infrastructure reconstruction have been secured, 20 EU projects applied. 15 educational programmes have been held, around 350 media articles published, over 10 international presentations held. And those are just rough estimates.
The citizens of Rijeka and Primorje-Gorski Kotar County are hard at work. Ideas are being created, enough to fill 10 new ECOC bid books like the one Rijeka prepared to win the title.

There’s some amount of positive trepidation regarding the number 2020. Will it turn out to be the desired spectacle? Is Rijeka charming enough?

Let’s go back to numbers and see – by the end of 2020, Rijeka will have conducted 1000 cultural events, 450 of which before the ECOC year. There will be 105 new or improved tourist attraction. A massive 27,200 square meters of beautiful industrial heritage will be restored and repurposed. All of that will be done with over 300 partners. There will be 170 conferences, seminars and workshops. Rijeka also wants 100 empowered local communities and civil initiatives. This will require the hard work of 4 thousand volunteers, and in the end we expect to see 4 million visitors.

The purpose is clear – we are building a new future for our city.

We are building it on existing foundations and making it sustainable. The former Rikard Benčić will be restored. It has already become the new Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, and it will also be a new home for the Rijeka City Library, Rijeka City Museum and the Brick House – a unique site for nurturing children’s laughter. Tito’s ship Galeb, a symbol of the Non-Aligned Movement, will be turned into a meeting point for all citizens of Rijeka and for visitors. During the year 2020, various events will be held at every turn, making the entire city one big place where culture, art, active civil engagement and diversity are celebrated.

The culture scene of Rijeka has always been consistent, dynamic, stable and progressive. However, it has never represented the primary image of the city. Outside of Rijeka’s borders, hardly anyone connects the city with art and culture. The images evoked are of ships, work uniforms, sailors, cranes, rust, oil and residential skyscrapers for working families. Rijeka = Work, and its cultural potential has sadly been left unexplored until now.
Borders are exciting. They need to be drawn in order to be erased. That is how we can use the best of both worlds, meaning that we can fully enjoy our own unique culture and at the same time enjoy other cultures by taking into consideration individual distinctions and common values.

Welcome to Rijeka, a city that represents an oasis of normal in an abnormal context. Enjoy your stay here. This is how history is made.




The project has been co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union.

Project description
The Rout of the Frankopans is a cultural and tourist trail encompassing 17 Frankopan castles and 3 sacral locations in the County area, many of which will be enriched with newly developed interpretational features. A comprehensive promotional campaign will promote all of them as a single cultural and tourist product and destination.
The project will protect the cultural heritage of the Frankopan family in the Primorje-Gorski Kotar County and create new social and economical value through its tourism evaluation. Primorje-Gorski Kotar County is the project holder, and its partners are the cities of Rijeka, Kraljevica, Bakar and Čabar, the municipalities of Čavle, Lokve and Vinodol, and the Diocese of Krk, the Natural History Museum Rijeka, the Centre for Culture of the City of Krk, the City of Rijeka Tourist Board and the Kvarner Tourist Board.

Aims and expected project results
This project aims to protect the cultural heritage of the Frankopan family in the Primorje-Gorski Kotar County and create new social and economical value through its tourism evaluation. The objective is to develop a cultural tourism product whose attractions will invite a large number of visitors to the castle locations that did not feature prominently in the tourism of the County. This will serve to revive county areas that were less developed until now. The aim is also to foster the sense of connection on the regional level and create a platform for collaboration among heritage, cultural and tourism organizations and cultural stakeholders.

Total value of the project
The total value of the project is 61 024 028.15 kuna, with the EU grant of 47 306 235.33 kuna.

Project implementation period
1 November 2015 – 1 October 2019

For more details please contact
Irena Grdinić
Phone +385 51 351 729





This project was co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union.

Project description
The integrated programme “Tourist Valorisation of Representative Monuments to Rijeka’s Industrial Heritage” is focused on renovating and restoring to functionality two representative protected cultural monuments – the ship Galeb and the Palace of the Sugar Refinery, as a part of the ex-industrial complex Rikard Benčić. The programme includes creating a new cultural/tourist route, as well as science education and promotion activities with the goal of promoting the project and raising awareness of cultural heritage amongst the general populace.
At the end of the reconstruction and equipping, the monuments will measure a total of 95,424.9 m2 and they will have a diverse range of cultural and commercial purposes: hosting permanent museum collections, occasional exhibitions, creative workshops, a summer cinema, themed conferences, accommodation, and a series of commercial services tied directly to cultural heritage. The project holder is the City of Rijeka, and the partners are the Rijeka Tourist Board and the University of Rijeka.

Goals and expected results
The project “Tourist Valorisation of Representative Monuments to Rijeka’s Industrial Heritage” is an integrated development project based on revitalising and protecting representative monuments to industrial heritage in the city of Rijeka, and on improving industrial heritage management. Also, together with the partner organisations, its goal is to create an integral cultural/tourist destination with a new cultural and tourism offer, developed within representative monuments to Rijeka’s industrial heritage as a communal and unique cultural-tourist product, contributing to tourist recognisability, the number of visits, and sustainable development at the local and regional level.

Total project value
The total project value is HRK 81,339,442.05, and non-refundable EU funding is HRK 68,891,606.18.

Project execution period: 1/6/2017 - 1/6/2020

Contact for more information
Phone: 051 209 555



This project was co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union.

Goals and expected results
The goal of the first phase of the project is to produce the studies and project documentation necessary to approach the execution phase of the integrated project. Besides preparing documentation, the dissemination and coordination of project activities will also be included during the project, in accordance with the rules of the European Union.
Consequently, with the successful preparation of studies and project documentation for the integrated project, the conditions necessary for the execution of construction operations will be fulfilled, as well as those for equipping two protected immobile cultural goods: the Governor’s Palace (cultural good mark: Z-99) and Nugent’s House (cultural good mark: P-5257), and also those for a strategic framework for future actions by the user, and its position and valorisation within the tourist context in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County, i.e. in Rijeka. Through cooperation with the project partners – the City of Rijeka and Primorje-Gorski Kotar County – preconditions will be created for presenting and strengthening the recognisability of the mobile and immobile cultural heritage kept by the user at both locations.
All the activities of the planned project, as well as its results, will create opportunities to develop new and improve existing facilities, programmes, services and activities of the project applicant, while simultaneously contributing to sustainable development and the improvement of cultural heritage management in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County. Since the cultural heritage managed by the applicant (in this case both mobile and immobile) is an extremely valuable resource due to its uniqueness and attractiveness, it has been recognised as a key cultural investment of Primorje-Gorski Kotar County and the City of Rijeka, with a huge potential for revitalisation and tourist valorisation, but also creating new and innovative, and modernising the existing educational and scientific programmes and services performed by the user according to the Statute.
In the long-term, the project will result in new jobs as a direct consequence of the execution of the integrated project.

Total project value

The total project value is HRK 3,486,133.68, and non-refundable EU funding is HRK 2,563,485.11.

Project execution period: 3/12/2014 - 3/8/2018

Contact for more information
Tamara Crnko