STA, 9 November 2020 - The construction of a motorway between Postojna and Jelšane, for which the government recently launched procedures for the national zoning plan, will start after 2030, the national motorway company DARS said on Monday. The zoning plan is to be adopted at the end of 2027.
According to DARS, the national programme for transport development until 2030 envisages the construction of the Postojna-Jelšane section after 2030.
The government decided last month to go ahead with the national zoning plan for the 38-kilometre section that will link the Slovenian motorway system with the Croatian port city of Rijeka, some 30 kilometres south of the Jelšane border crossing.
The motorway is to run through the municipalities of Postojna, Pivka and Ilirska Bistrica, the government said.
The section has also been classified as a part of long-route connections of international importance in the transport networks of the Adriatic and Ionian Initiative.
"The new road connection will significantly improve the transport situation in the existing system of state roads in the relevant area. It will unburden existing roads and improve road safety," the government said, adding that it would also function as bypasses for towns and places it will pass.
The government decided to prepare the national zoning plan for the Postojna-Jelšane section in 2013, and studies have been ordered to look into possible routes. Years later the government decided the Postojna route was the only viable option.
In line with the timeline of the Ministry for Environment and Spatial Planning, it will take about three years for the government to approve the route of the section. This is to be followed with zoning work and only after that will blueprints be drafted, properties and relevant approvals acquired, the final step being a tender for contractors, the newspaper Delo reported last month.
The paper also said that locals from Pivka would likely object to the route. Mayor Robert Smrdelj told the paper that the potential routes clash either with Natura 2000, cultural heritage or water sources.
In order to avoid this, the solutions move the route closer to villages. "Because the course is planned too close to villages, there may be a lot of bad blood in the Pivka area."
Locals in Pivka would rather see that this motorway section run from Divača, further west along the existing motorway, to Jelšane. Smrdelj told Delo that there was "significant political pressure" that the motorway section to Jelšane run from Postojna.