Martina JAKOVCIC, Faculty of Science, Croatia
Josip KAJINIC, Museum of Hrvatsko zagorje, Croatia
Located in NW Croatia, the Hrvatsko zagorje region is the second oldest industrial region in Croatia. Today it is a predominantly rural and suburban region closely linked to the city of Zagreb. The industrial development, starting form 19th century was the result of several factors i.e. proximity to the city of Zagreb, development of the first railroad lines, high population density, which meant a large number of cheap labor, and the available ore. Different types of industry developed in the region, from mining and brickyards to textile industry and food processing, resulting in different types of industrial landscapes. Industrialization promoted significant changes in the landscape: greater density in urban areas and urbanization of the natural and rural environment. The shortage of ore in the decades after the Second World War and cheaper ore from abroad led to the closure of the mines. The transition in the 1990s and early 2000s led to the restructuring and closure of most industrial sites. In urban areas these sites are often seen as potential for future development but in rural areas they are seen as a nuisance that detracts from the green and tranquil landscape. In total, there are 20 brownfield sites in the Hrvatsko zagorje that are enlisted on the Registry of cultural heritage, one brownfield site that is under preventive protection and two brownfield sites that are registered as cultural heritage. Nine of these sites are mining sites or sites associated with mining. This article examines opportunities for cultural regeneration and conservation of old mining sites in rural areas of Hrvatsko zagorje. It studies the role of existing local museums in Pregrada and Radoboj and Museum of Hrvatsko zagorje in presentation and evaluation of mining heritage and their role in creation of public attitudes towards mining heritage. It also suggests possibilities for its presentation and use in tourism and educational purposes.
Keywords: brownfields|mining|cultural regeneration|museum presentation|Croatia