Lijepa zelena dolina (nekad)

Beautiful green valley (at one time)...


fed people from surrounding hills for millennia...







... But, after WWII the idea of good living was to work 8 hours instead of dawn to dusk...

and young people went to live in the city, leaving behind old homes and old people with their land.


In Need of Renovation

A ray of hope came when children of those who left became interested in old architecture, summer country living, and the developing rural tourism






A desire to Renovate

was born among some heirs of the old houses who grew in congested and polluted cities and in foreign countries


The Beginning and the End

The houses on the left were renovated during the time of prosperity in 1970's by the man who was born there and then emigrated. The houses on the right were told to be in the plans of renovation by the city born grandson of the couple who last lived here...







Traditional Architecture

A beautifully constructed cellar ceiling needed and got some support to keep it from collapse







Then came Rockwool

The Danish conglomerate built a stone wool factory in the once "beautiful green valley"...


after it purchased the land and obtained permits to build under still unexplained circumstances, and with clearly false Environment Study, with no economic, let alone environmental justification, and without any regard for the health endangerment, life quality, or the opinion of the local population.






The vastest valley in Istria was declared "jalova zemlja" (infertile land) by local mayor who fought (his constituents) to bring Rockwool to the commune of Pićan.



The Ghost Town

Instead of promised job opportunities, and a stop to emigration that regional leaders boasted...








... the people, those who can, continue to leave, or don't return, now also for the fear of risking health problems or worse


For now, there is peace and quiet, lone birds,  and even some fresh air, at least on weekends and days when the "test production" takes a pause  







On the same path,

Pićan is showing signs of collaps as well. These ruins, next to the historic steeple, second tallest in Istria, are only few meters from township government offices where decisons to lure Rockwool in with costly incentives was made (or approved).

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