PL-UA 2021-27
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Carpathian forest railroads – contract for a major project in TOURISM signed!

12 / 06 / 2024
Category: Project News

One of the largest projects of the Programme Interreg NEXT Poland – Ukraine 2021-2027 has launched! Millions of euros will be invested in the development of the tourist offer of the Carpathian forest railroads. A ceremony was just held in the Bieszczady Mountains to sign a partnership agreement for the implementation of this Large Infrastructure Project.

 Thanks to the project, a tourist service centre with exhibition and conference space will be established at the main station of the Bieszczady “locomotive” in Majdan near Cisna. There will be a permanent museum exhibition, presenting the history of narrow-gauge railroads in the Carpathians, as well as a place to organize conferences, workshops, concerts, vernissages, film reviews and other events related to the cultural and natural heritage of the region. There will also be social facilities, ticket offices and an information point for tourists. This is important, because the Bieszczady Forest Railway serves thousands of visitors.

This is the only building where we will be able to shelter tourists during bad weather. 200 people get off each train, and there are 6-8 such trains per day. In total, the railroad transports more than 150,000 people throughout the season,’ enumerated Mariusz Wermiński, Chairman of the Board of the Bieszczady Forest Railway Foundation.

Interestingly, a 400-meter-long footbridge with a viewing platform among the trees will be run from this location over the tracks. It will be used for environmental education and recreation, but will also allow the operation of the historic 120-year-old station and forest trains to be observed from above.

This project is unique because it is being carried out in an exceptional place. This is a pearl, one of the main places visited by tourists,’ noted Tomasz Jędrzejewski, Deputy Head of the Programme’s Joint Secretariat.

A new attraction that is sure to attract more visitors will be narrow-gauge bicycle trolleys, which will also be purchased thanks to the project. Each of them will be able to transport 5 people. The vehicles will run on a 3-kilometer section of track from Cisna to Dołżyca, renovated as part of the investment.

In the Ukrainian part of the Carpathian Mountains, in the village of Vyhoda, the project partner will renovate a forest railroad station adapting it into a railroad heritage museum. The area around the building, which is also the beginning of the historic railroad track, will be developed for visitors.

I am happy that we can jointly – Poland and Ukraine – implement such a large project,’ stressed Mykola Matsalak, Mayor of the Vyhoda village. The joint project will also include a film on the history of the Carpathian narrow-gauge railroads.

The leader of the project titled ‘The Carpathian narrow-gauge railways ­– a journey in the footsteps of the Carpathian forest railways’ is the Bieszczady Forest Railway Foundation, and the Vyhoda Village Council from Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast is its partner. On 6th June, their representatives signed a partnership agreement for the project. During the ceremony, attended by the Marshal of the Podkarpackie Voivodeship Władysław Ortyl, member of the Programme Monitoring Committee, a visualization of the future investment and the place of its implementation were presented.

We would like to cooperate with Ukraine to an even greater extent, so that there are no fears and limitations, because they also translate into our tourist traffic. People, going to the Bieszczady Mountains, ask whether it is safe here. This is the reality. We hope that this unwarranted aggression of Russia against Ukraine will quickly come to an end,’ said the region's host.

This is one of the largest projects in terms of budget of the Programme Interreg NEXT Poland – Ukraine 2021-2027 – its total value is 4.3 million euros, of which almost 3.9 million is EU funding. It will likely be the only project implemented in the Programme under the TOURISM priority, as the remaining funds from this allocation have been moved to the projects in the ENVIRONMENT priority.



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