This year marks the 70th anniversary of TAM, Maribor’s automobile company, which had a significant impact on the development of the city. The jubilee visitors were able to see where the production used to take place as well as the underground tunnels, which are an important legacy of this former factory.
In the best of times, the factory had thousands of employees. Those were golden years, the salary was regular, describes Silvester Gajzer, who worked in the factory for 40 years as an innovator: “There were 9.590 of us, I was the director of a branch and we took great care of the people, we never had to wonder if the salary would come or not.”
The company ran into financial trouble in 1990 and went bankrupt six years later. The successor of the factory is called TAM Europe and has a Chinese owner.
Secrets of underground tunnels
The visitors were most eager to see the 15-metre-deep tunnels built by the Germans during WW2. They used them to move the motors and other parts produced for their military aircraft to safety. The total length of the tunnels is about 4,000 metres and forms a network system of various passages.
The tunnels now host an exhibition site and a water station for technological water, but the keepers would like to organise guided tours and make it a tourist attraction of Maribor.