On the first day of February 2020, Rijeka marked its place on the map of the European Capitals of Culture alongside cities whose citizens feel at home anywhere in Europe for good.
Nestled between the Mediterranean, Central European and Eastern European influences, Rijeka has been part of as many as seven different countries over the past century of its development.
As part of the European Capital of Culture project in 2020, Rijeka is building and opening new cultural buildings and facilities, which are co-financed by EU funds, and offering over 600 cultural, art and other events that involve more than 250 cultural institutions and organizations from Croatia and 40 other countries from Europe and the rest of the world.
The cultural buildings and facilities in Rijeka will remain durable assets intended for the citizens of Rijeka and its visitors to enjoy the cultural offering, as well as for the further development of the tourist offering in the city and the region. These include the facilities at Benčić (Children’s House, City Museum, Library and the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art), the ship Galeb, the Exportdrvo building at Delta, and the RiHub premises that were refurbished in 2018. The renovated Frankopan castles in Primorje-Gorski County will also remain durable assets.
The permanent exhibition of the City Museum at the Sugar Refinery Palace, which addresses the history of Rijeka, will remain after 2020, as will the permanent exhibition on the Galeb, which will deal with the history of the ship and Tito as a man who made a small country, which included Croatia, an essential and recognized factor in the global arena and who was also a leading figure in the Non-Aligned Movement of which Yugoslavia was a part. The permanent sculptures made by global, European, and Croatian artists that make up the new culture and tourism route and tackle topical issues relevant to their locations will remain in the Kvarner region after 2020.
As a result of the development of cultural diplomacy as an integral part of the European Capital of Culture project, Rijeka has been establishing international strategic partnerships since receiving the title. It will ensure the visibility of Rijeka in cultural and social milieus across Europe and around the globe, allowing Rijeka to host many international conferences and welcome reputable experts in the fields of culture, art, and creative industries. Such events will provide new know-how and ideas for culture in Rijeka in general, as well as for young people and the university students and community, and will eventually benefit all the citizens of Rijeka.