Nova Gorica, Gorizia seeking European Capital of Culture title
Nova Gorica and Gorizia plan to structure their bid around the strong role the conurbation plays on the border as a place that connect languages and cultures.
It was on a border square which the cities share that the main celebration of Slovenia's EU accession was held in 2004, when the last remnants of the Iron Curtain in Europe were removed.
The area "can be a model of cooperation for many other cities in Europe and the world," Nova Gorica Mayor Klemen Miklavič told the press on Monday.
The formal memorandum of understanding will be signed on Saturday, when a special project office will be launched at the train station on the shared square.
In preparation for the candidacy, the cities solicited proposals for activities from locals and around 140 responded in Slovenia and around 50 in Italy, some with multiple initiatives.
While the proposals cannot be directly translated into projects, they are "a good indicator for both municipalities of who does culture, what they do, and what they want and need," said Neda Rusjan Bric, the head of the project.
The cities have until 31 December to submit their candidacy, with a short list expected to be made by a panel at the Ministry of Culture by March or April and the final selection before the end of 2020.
Two European cities hold the title of European Capital of Culture each year, with Slovenia having the 2025 slot along with Germany.
Several candidacies have been tentatively announced already, including by Ljubljana, Ptuj, Kranj and Lendava.