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Mihail Koloni

Michail Koloni is one of the most prominent figures in the municipal administrations. He was a man of the National Revival, actively supporting the national liberation cause, a public figure with European culture and attitude, a merchant, dedicated to charity and donations. 

He contributed greatly to the formation of the modern look of the town. Michail Koloni was born on 27 November 1817 in Sliven. He lost his parents very early and moved with his relatives in Bucharest. Then he moved to Paris. In 1848 he took part in the French Revolution. Upon returning to Bucharest, he helped prepare the transfer of H.Dimitar's and S.Karadzha's squads into Bulgaria. In 1879 he settled in Varna. 

The Koloni administration set the beginning of the modern development of Varna as an European town. In his two mandates a number of measures were undertaken for the urban development, sanitation, education, culture, recreation and greenery of the town. At Koloni's insistence, a decision was taken for the construction of a hotel, a garden and sea baths. He worked for the creation of the town parks and the Seaside garden above all (it used to be a vegetable garden). Two small wharfs were built in the harbour. 

Under Koloni's pressure, the Municipal Council gave up the land of St.Dimitar Monastery to Kniaz Alexander Battenberg for building his summer palace there. Koloni thought this will raise the reputation of Varna as a resort. Koloni often realisedh some of his ideas, which did not receive financial support from the Council, with his own funds. Such was the case of constructing three buildings for shops. The Council soon realised the significance of this site and bout it back from him. New public works were completed in his mandates: St. Kliment School, a municipal hospital was set up, measures were taken to improve water supply, sanitation,setting up of a maternity hospital, etc. The municipal lawyers institutions were set up at this time, too. Almost all Koloni's projects were well thought and timely, but not all of them could be realised because of lack of funds and understanding form other authorities. During Koloni's term in office, the town developed quickly as a commercial, industrial and cultural centre. These huge undertakings exhausted him. Having dedicated his life and fortune to the development of Varna, he died on 10 January 1893.