Linden trees in Nikšić, Montenegro

Description
There is a plan to reconstruct part of the Street Ivana Milutinovića in Nikšić, from the Square to the Tourist Organization, to allow for truck traffic, although in 1986 this type of vehicles was forbidden to cross through this street due to safety reasons and to avoid pollution. The reconstruction plan included cutting down 50 half a century old linden trees, known as a symbol of Nikšić. The residents of the street together with numerous NGOs and public figures were determined to save the trees. More than 2000 people signed the petition, while the tenants of the street in a symbolical act planted a new linden tree to show they will not give up on saving the standing trees. The citizens pointed out that the plan included reducing the pedestrian pavements width reduction to only 1.5 meters, which was inconsistent with all European standards. The NGO "Ozone" warned that the expansion of the street would increase the risk for the children of the Ivana Milutinovića street kindergarten. In addition to numerous negative effects on environment and health and safety, the opponents of the project pointed out that the decisions of the public interest were made without the compliance with the law and public hearings, as the project decision was made on Friday, 6 July 2012 at 3 PM and its realization was planned for the next day at 6 AM. The political party The Positive Montenegro also joined the defence of the trees, emphasizing that lindens in Ivana Milutinović did not block the traffic and even if that was the case it could be sorted out by clipping tree crowns where necessary. The citizens consulted Inspectorate of Construction, Transportation, Environment and Spatial Planning, Nikšić Municipality. Finally, the project was stopped.
Basic Data
Name Linden trees in Nikšić, Montenegro
CountryMontenegro
SiteNikšić
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Infrastructure and Built Environment
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Urban development conflicts
Specific CommoditiesUrban infrastructure; Linden trees, transport services
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsThe Ivana Milutinovića street is less than 300m long. It was planned to cut 50 linden trees.
Project Area (in hectares)less than 1
Level of Investment (in USD)More than 1,340,000
Type of PopulationUrban
Potential Affected PopulationAround 500
Start Date06/07/2012
End Date2012
Company Names or State EnterprisesPUC “Komunalno” Niksic from Montenegro - Contractor on the project
Relevant government actorsMunicipality of Nikšić; Local Community Niksic; Inspectorate of Construction, Transportation, Environment and Spatial Planning, Nikšić Municipality
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersEnvironmental movement “Oyon”; NGO Alpha Center; Expeditio; Eco Centre Dolphin from Kotor; European Movement in Montenegro; Anima from Kotor; the local board of political party Positive Montenegro; Youth Network of PZP (Pokret za promjene )
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)LOW (some local organising)
When did the mobilization beginIn REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Groups MobilizingLocal ejos
Local government/political parties
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Social movements
Local public figures
Forms of MobilizationCreation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of alternative proposals
Media based activism/alternative media
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Arguments for the rights of mother nature
symbolical planting of a new linden tree
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover
Health ImpactsPotential: Accidents, Occupational disease and accidents, Other environmental related diseases
Socio-economic ImpactsPotential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Outcome
Project StatusStopped
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseNegotiated alternative solution
Project cancelled
Development of AlternativesThe citizens of Nikšić backed up by NGOs and public figures asked for cancellation of the project.
Do you consider this as a success?Yes
Why? Explain briefly.Due to the intervention of local residents helped by numerous NGOs and public figures the trees were not cut down.
Sources and Materials
Links

Nikšićani se peticijom bore za lipe u Ulici Ivana Milutinovića
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Nikšićani ustali u odbranu lipa, potpisao i Šobić
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Odustati od sjece lipa
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Hoće da posjeku simbol Nikšića zbog kamiona
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NE LOMITE NAM LIPE
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Čuvari simbola svog grada
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Media Links

Lipa otpora
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Other Documents

Planting a tree as a sign of a protest Residents of the Street Ivana Milutinovića planted a linden tree as a protest against the intent of their cutting down
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Projection of enviromental impact of the project in the street Ivana Milutinovića, NGO NGO "Ozon " did a projection of possible environmental impacts of the project planned in the Ivana Milutinovića street
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Meta Information
ContributorJovanka Spiric, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, vankajo(at)gmail.com
Last update02/06/2014
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