Short history of project
The city established the non-profit making organisation, Košice – European Capital of Culture 2013 (Košice 2013 n. o.), acting on a self-governing principle and financed from several sources.
In terms of monitoring, preparing and implementing the project by the European Commission, the first important moment was formal monitoring of the project in December 2010 in Brussels. The monitoring panel requested the newly-elected Mayor, Richard Raši, and the city authorities to further support the project team and mainly concentrate upon the artistic programming for 2013. The European Commission appreciated the establishment of an association of legal entities called Coalition 2013+, founded in August 2010 in order to support the project. Coalition 2013+ currently has over 40 members and includes organisations and institutions from the public and private sector actively contributing to the success of the project.
An important decision related to the Košice – European Capital of Culture 2013 project was made by the Government of the Slovak Republic in April 2009, when they approved material on financing events within the project and allocated financial means for the budgetary chapter of the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic, distributed between 2009 and 2013 as follows:
2009: 166 000 €
2010: 1 162 000 €
2011: 1 992 000 €
2012: 3 320 000 €
2013: 3 320 000 €
In March 2010, the Government of the Slovak Republic approved a resolution on financing the investment part of the Košice – European Capital of Culture 2013 project from structural funds in a total amount of 60 million €. In the same year, the project team worked on meeting project targets, organising various interesting events and preparing unique projects. These included, for example, the PENTA POLITANA project based upon reviving cooperation between five East Slovakia towns – Košice, Prešov, Levoča, Bardejov and Sabinov, and linking Košice to the worldwide concept, White Night/Nuit Blanche. More than 10,000 visitors became part of this original event for the first time and a year later the number of people curious about the 32 artistic installations increased almost fivefold.
When analysing the readiness of the investment project’s preparation process and the level of project communication with the local environment, Košice city management approved personnel and organisational measures focusing upon minimising the time delay in preparing investment projects under the authorisation of the City of Košice, and opening dialogue between the project team and all interested groups in Košice and the region. The current project management was established after a thorough selection process and one of the most important criteria was knowledge of the local cultural environment. Ján Sudzina became the new Executive Director of Košice 2013, n. o. and he put together an able and dynamic team whose qualities were also appreciated during the last visit to Košice of the Chairman of the Monitoring Panel of the European Commission, Manfred Gaulhofer, in November 2011.
The results of the current significant acceleration in the activities of the Košice – European Capital of Culture 2013 project team are mainly increasing cooperation between all interested subjects in local and regional administration, the private sector and universities in improving creativity and creative sectors in Košice and the region. The Košice – European Capital of Culture 2013 project has already started to create an environment in Košice which supports talented people, their creativity and the development of new ideas and puts them into practice, which is key project task. The city of Košice therefore has a new vision and perspective. Thanks to the Košice – European Capital of Culture 2013 project, the city is on its greatest journey to becoming a major city of creativity and prosperity.