The Vukovar water tower is one of the most famous symbols of Vukovar and the suffering of the city and the country in the Battle of Vukovar and the Croatian War of Independence when the water tower and the city itself were largely destroyed by the Serbian forces.
The Water Tower has been undergoing major developments under the project ‘Vukovar Water Tower – Symbol of Croatian Unity’ and on Friday, Mayor Ivan Penava visited the site.
The works on this magnificent cultural-tourist and memorial symbol of the heroic battle for Vukovar and the Homeland War are nearing completion.
The entire project of reconstruction and construction of the Vukovar Water Tower takes place in three phases, the first phase of which includes the reconstruction of the Water Tower and the construction of parking lots for cars and buses.
“The works on the first phase should be completed on October 1, 2020, and the value of the performed works is HRK 32,036,327.59 with VAT. The second phase included the construction of ancillary facilities – a cafe with a children’s playground and public toilets, an auditorium overlooking the Danube and the park, and all works were completed on September 25, 2019. The value of the performed works is HRK 8,259,329.40 with VAT and a contractual penalty of 5% of the net price of HRK 374,803.36 without VAT was charged.
The third phase refers to the equipping and interior design of buildings reconstructed and built in the first two phases. This phase has yet to be agreed, but the estimated design value of the equipment is HRK 6,000,000.00 with VAT, “explained Bruno Pakter, project manager for the reconstruction and construction of the Vukovar Water Tower.
The Vukovar Water Tower is almost 50 meters high and was hit by over 600 grenades during the war, which caused great damage due to which the reconstruction was redesigned twice.
“The view from the proudest place in Croatia is worth HRK 46 million, and it was provided to us by almost 7,000 Croats around the world. Individuals, companies, and associations from literally all continents and from a large number of countries joined the action of raising funds for the reconstruction of the Vukovar Water Tower – a symbol of Croatian unity.
This project, just as the defense of Vukovar and the entire Homeland War did when they brought together the entire Croatian people in the fight for freedom and independence of the Republic of Croatia, brought together Croats who through it clearly and unequivocally made it clear that they cared deeply about values and symbols of the Homeland War, but equally the truth about the Homeland War which was liberating.
In the Homeland War, the Croatian people began to defend themselves together against the Greater Serbia aggressor, and that is the real reason why we turned this building into a monument. Through this story, we all showed togetherness and overcame the differences we have in our opinions, and I think that this is the main message of this facility from which we need to draw inspiration for all future endeavours, “said Mayor Penava.
“This facility will employ 28 people who will work in two different segments – catering and museology and memorial. Six interactive screens with multimedia content will be set up in the Memorial Room in the Water Tower, which will talk about the Homeland War, the victims of Vukovar, but also the history of the Water Tower. From the Memorial Room, the Memorial Trail leads to the lookout, and the trail itself symbolizes the difficult rise of the Republic of Croatia in the fight for freedom and independence. In the lookout point next to the mast with the Croatian flag, in memory of courage and sacrifice, are the footsteps of the late defenders Ivan Ivanika and Hrvoje Đalta, who raised the flag on the Water Tower every time it was torn down during the attack on Vukovar. Memorial plaques will also be erected for them, ”said Darijan Zeko, director of the city company Vukovar Water Tower – a symbol of Croatian unity that will manage the facility itself.
“We believe that the Water Tower will arouse interest in new tourist arrivals in Vukovar,” concluded Zeko.