Although at a distance, Tirana and Mantua are moving side by side on some initiatives such as planting new trees in the city and increasing the cycle paths.
The mayor of Tirana, Erion Veliaj, received yesterday, on February 13, in a meeting the mayor of Mantua, Mattia Palazzi, with whom he spoke about the possibility of exchanging successful experiences and increasing cooperation in different areas.
Mayor Palazzi praised the changes Tirana is undergoing and stressed that this is a good example for others to follow.
“Tirana is a city that is growing rapidly and is trying to involve everyone in its growth, because this is the role of a capital. There is no doubt that celebrating 100 years in the capital means facing a challenge, and you are doing it very well, through excellent teamwork, with a new staff, which makes the difference with progressive European ideas "Palazzi said, also praising the policies pursued by the Municipality of Tirana to return new spaces to citizens.
“The work you have done in this beautiful square reflects it very well. Returning green spaces to citizens is a very important policy, it is the policy of the future ", he added.
Upon delivery of the Clock Tower to Palaces, Mayor Veliaj stated that there will be a number of important activities on the occasion of this centenary.
“This is our first meeting with a mayor in the second century of Tirana. The whole year will be a year of celebrations. I am very happy to have opened this second century with an excellent friend from Albania, but above all from Tirana. I believe that in the final, although relations between Albania and Italy are perfect, relations between cities are also important, where realities are more concrete, with daily exchanges, as in culture, business, studies, everything that holds together people", said Veliaj.
The collaboration will also be seen at the Literature Festival held in Mantua, where Albanian literature will have a dedicated pavilion.
“Many people will wonder what Tirana has to do with Mantua. We are the number one city for tree planting, and the same for cycle paths and I believe that to all those who want Tirana like the other European cities, we must answer like this: plant more trees, more cycle paths, electric road transport, such as taxis electrical systems that are already a reality in Tirana. The future of our cities depends largely on this type of activity. So, I am very grateful to the mayor for the space offered at our exhibitions in the fairs that take place in Mantua, in particular the pavilion dedicated during the Literature Festival ". said Veliaj.
Mantua in 2019 was the European Capital of Culture, therefore Veliaj and Palazzi agreed to share experiences in order to prepare Tirana as the European Youth Capital in 2022.
“I can't wait to continue with this fruitful collaboration, and not only to have a dignified presence at the Mantua Literature Festival, but we also want to learn from the best for 2022, when we will be the European Youth Capital.
Mantua was the European Capital of Culture; our experts will use this two-year space to prepare for the European Year of Youth in the city of Tirana, so as not to be forgotten, with a dignified organization of activities. As Mattia told me, these are fantastic opportunities, because they put the city on the map, all of Europe speaks of your capital, be it culture or youth. We want to learn from the best ", added Veliaj.
The intervention of Palazzi
Upon his return, the mayor Palazzi commented on the meeting on Facebook: "Over 400 Albanian citizens live in our city, over 3.500 in the entire province of Mantua.
They represent a well integrated community, active and active in culture.
Today here in Tirana, guest of the friend Mayor Erion Veliaj, I discussed about common projects, from the great theme of urban forestation, to the relationship between university and growth.
I am putting the Polo of Mantua in contact, with the UNESCO chair with the University of Tirana, important collaborations can be born on the recovery of the historical heritage.
Erion is a very good Mayor, a leader who has been able to build a renewed and competent team and together they are changing the city, which grows three times the country.
He took me to see the parks they are building, the cycle paths, the training centers to encourage the start-up of the startups, the urban regenerations that see the city planning with development funds and international donors.
The new Albanian ruling class has formed in the world, from the United States to Italy and are now modernizing the country, from legislation, to the economy, to rights.
A new and not simple path, but they have ideas, competence and ability to do it and I hope to share the negotiation for Albania's entry into the European Union.
As a sign of friendship between Mantua and Tirana we planted a tree together in the park of the new Skanderbeg square. ”