Swiss project contributes to pedestrian safety in Kosovo’s capital

The lack of lights and traffic signs, along with the carelessness of drivers have made the ‘Agim Ramadani’ street in Pristina one of the streets with the highest number of accidents involving pedestrians.

According to Gent Begolli, director of public services in the Municipality of Prishtina, the issue, which was a great concern for both residents and the municipality, has been recently addressed with the support of the DEMOS project.

The municipality of Pristina with the support of DEMOS, intervened on the most dangerous pedestrian crossings in Kosovo’s capital by adding traffic signs and lights, which have resulted in a marked reduction in the number of accidents in those streets.

These interventions result from a detailed situation analysis and a pilot programme in school zones aiming to improve safety for school children and other pedestrians. They are part of the Road Safety Plan in Prishtina city, which is being developed with DEMOS support.

“This project has been one of the most beneficial for the municipality, because we haven’t had any kind of accident since the traffic signs and lights were installed. Prior to this project, especially at night there had been many accidents, where people were hit by cars because pedestrian crossings were not visible, or drivers drove too fast”, said Begolli.

Initially, the project was implemented in 13 locations in Pristina. Considering the noticeable improvement in traffic safety, the municipality has initiated procedures for intervening in a series of other pedestrian crossings, where lighting is urgently needed. “This is one of the projects that has been most valued by citizens, because not a single pedestrian has been hit by a car since the installment of the traffic lights”, said Begolli.

Another beneficial investment, which has eased residents’ lives, is the establishment of traffic lights in the city center of Lipjan. According to Valzim Mziu, from the Department of Public Service in Lipjan, the city was heavily congested because traffic was not guided properly.

“After the establishment of the traffic lights, we have managed to circumvent traffic around the city, so that pedestrians can move safely and quickly”, said Mziu.

In order to improve urban mobility, the project DEMOS has supported 12 partner municipalities in Kosovo in mobility planning, which has so far contributed substantially to improving the lives of citizens.

In the context of improving mobility, the Municipality of Viti has also benefited in a project to create ramps for people with disabilities.

According to Hasan Aliu, deputy mayor of Viti municipality, DEMOS contributed with the initiative and financial support from to build 4 new angles or 8 ramps, aiming to facilitate mobility for people with disabilities.

“This investment is not only welcome for people with disabilities, but also for the elderly and mothers with children with carts”, said Aliu.