- Project name: “KRIŽNICA VISITOR CENTRE – The Biosphere Reserve Mura-Drava-Danube interpretation centre” KK.06.1.2.02.0018
- Total value: 16.250.745,01 kn
- Co-financed value: 13.184.260,41 kn
- Project implementation period: 13.12.2016.-01.06.2022.
The project “KRIŽNICA VISITOR CENTRE – The Biosphere Reserve Mura-Drava-Danube interpretation centre”, KK. 06.1.2.02.0018 in the value of 16.250.745,01 kn for the investor the Municipality of Pitomača partnered with the Public Institution for the Management of Protected Areas of Nature and the Ecological Network of Virovitica-Podravina County and the Tourist board of the Municipality of Pitomača. The project has been co-financed by The European Union from the Regional Development Fond. The project application was created by VIDRA – the Regional Development agency of the Virovitica-Podravina County cooperating with the Municipality of Pitomača.
This project is focused on the interpretation of natural heritage and involved the reconstruction of a building that used to be a military barrack and a district school in Križnica into the Visitor Centre Križnica – the Biosphere Reserve Mura-Drava-Danube interpretation centre. The project was divided into two phases of construction. The first phase consisted of the reconstruction and building of the main building of the Visitor centre, side building, exterior sanitary facilities and the amphitheater, and the second phase the construction of the biological pond and the bridge across it.
While equipping and finishing the buildings, the exterior of the Visitor centre which consists of a large green space on which visitor infrastructure has been built and the environment has been set up for school in nature, an educational trail, an artificial biological pond and horticultural arrangements including autochthonous plants. The educational trail is completely adapted to people with disabilities and people with difficulties in movement since it is made of bricks and is suitable for moving around in wheelchairs.
Within the Visitor centre a hiking and cycling trail with necessary infrastructure has been made in the length of 210 m which connects the Centre with the Drave river. On the hiking-cycling trail there are resting points for cyclists and hikers, educational informative boards and solar lighting poles. With the aim of a complete experience of Križnica and the Drava there is a tourist train, 20 bicycles, of which 10 are electrical, including equipment (helmets) and an electrical power station has been installed for recharging the train and bikes. There are 5 canoes at visitors disposal with necessary equipment (paddles, life vests, helmets) which will be used to explore the untouched nature of the Drava and for observing the flora and fauna.
The Visitor centre has a bio-research facility on the ground floor, a multimedia presentation hall, a multimedia classroom, a lift, an observatory and a souvenir shop. The main purpose of the bio-research facility is to educate pre-school children, pupils and students during organised visits to the Centre integrated into the school in nature programme and student’s field trips, but also to educate all visitors. The facility is equipped with light microscopes, stereoscopic desks, a water analysing machine, keys for determining bird, mammal, reptile, fish and snake species and other expert literature which can help visitors to learn about protected species and biological diversity in the Križnica area. In the multimedia presentation hall visitors can interactively take part in creating their own experience by choosing the content which they would like to project using the multimedia equipment. The multifunctional multimedia classroom is equipped with to enable the reproduction of audio and video materials used to execute educational workshops, school in nature programmes and expert meetings and conferences. Access to the observatory is gained by using the lift where a breathtaking view of the Drava river and wonderful nature awaits.
The entire park is planted with traditional, autochthonous and modern plants – decorative shrubs, trees, flowers and fruit trees. Throughout the park there are wooden bird houses, and micro cameras are set up in those on the main building so that visitors can see the birds in their nests at any time on the screens that are connected with the cameras.