Slovenska Street – the Capital’s Backbone
Slovenska Street is considered by the majority of Ljubljana residents to be the most important traffic road in the capital, enabling drivers to cross the city centre in no time. This concept however, corresponds to neither the character nor the meaning of the city’s main street which is why the major part of the anticipated redevelopment is a changed traffic regime, adapted to the sustainable principles presented in the city’s new transport policy. Limiting transit for cars on Slovenska Street is one of the main measures of the City of Ljubljana’s (MOL) Transport Policy which can be implemented now that the Štajerska highway junction has been built and the inner city ring completed.
The project proposes an altered traffic arrangement that limits transit motor traffic on Slovenska Street whilst giving priority to public transport, cyclists and pedestrians through the newly acquired public areas. In the central section of the street, between Šubičeva and Gosposvetska streets, transit motor traffic will be interrupted, but in other sections, between Šubičeva and Aškerčeva streets, and Gosposvetska and Tivolska streets, motor traffic will have two lanes in both directions. Public buses will run the entire length of Slovenska Street stopping at two main and two intermediate bus stops. In the central part there will be two uniformly designed bus stops: Konzorcij/Kazina and Ajdovščina/Figovec. The parking garage under Kongresni trg will be accessible from Šubičeva Street and from the southern section of Slovenska Street via a special traffic lane. Access for residents, shop deliveries, the central Post Office and guests of Hotel Slon will be issued with special electronic surveillance and permits. The north and south sections of Slovenska Street will retain the existing character of a traffic road, but the central section will become a lively and comfortable hub for public transport, bicycle lanes and sidewalks leading in all directions.
Avenue of “Golden” Trees
The redevelopment will transform the existing transit motor traffic corridor which doesn’t contribute to the street life, into the capital’s central public area. The withdrawal of motor traffic will enable programmes to expand and design a space with its own character, which will at the same time still partly maintain the historical character of a road that the city centre draws on due to buses, taxis and deliveries. Because of the two traffic lanes, there will be extended sidewalks with bicycle lanes on both sides. The two-lane road and pedestrian area will be levelled to visually connect the street area and make it easier for pedestrians to cross. The new concrete paving will be unified for the same reason, but processed differently, so that the public transport lanes in the middle of the street will differ from the side lanes intended for pedestrians and cyclists. The key feature and the most distinctive element of the new arrangement will be a tree avenue that will be planted along the eastern verge of the street. The avenue of Ginkgo trees, which turn golden-yellow in the autumn, will connect the currently heterogeneous architectural image of the street and have a strong green impact.
The newly renovated street will acquire a unique identity, modern in every aspect. In addition, in the pockets of transverse streets that are linked to the central part of Slovenska Street, there will be smaller squares for socialising and entertainment with specially designed urban equipment, resting isles, playgrounds and additional lighting. Integrated and sustainable solutions will give the street a unique, representative character of national importance. The integrated redevelopment will be carried out gradually. The most extensive works will be performed on the central section of the street where outdated public utility infrastructure will be replaced and then new paving, the new bus stops, the planting of the tree avenue and finally new street furniture. Construction works will continue for about a year with an estimated total cost of about EUR 3m. On the north and south sections of Slovenska Street, on Gosposvetska Street and on other sections of important streets, there will be a rearranged traffic regime. The complete redevelopment of both sections and Gosposvetska Street with the tree avenue, infrastructure renovation and new paving will be carried out later.