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SRE: A new facade lighting system for the building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Riga has been completed


Under the leadership of SJSC State Real Estate, a new facade lighting system has been built for the building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at Krišjāņa Valdemāra 3, Riga. It has been created using energy-efficient solutions and will provide an opportunity to illuminate the facade in honour of important events in the colours of the flags of the UN and NATO, as well as Latvia and other European Union and NATO countries, informs Renārs Griškevičs, Chairman of the Board of SRE.

The construction of the new lighting system was performed by SIA Smart Energy, the author of the construction intention and the author's supervisor is SIA Livland Group.

Press secretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jānis Beķeris: “We are grateful for the valuable cooperation and appreciate the implementation of this project. We are sure that our partners abroad will also notice this. Now we have the opportunity to constantly illuminate the historic building, which is a national architectural heritage site and part of the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage, and to support Allies in significant moments of celebration or remembrance, according to international practice. This is a vivid and symbolic gesture of solidarity in transnational relations. At the same time, it is also a project of international significance, as it will increase the visibility of the building of the Latvian Ministry of Foreign Affairs abroad, which we have been trying to achieve for some time now by including the building in visual, video and representation materials. It is symbolic that this is happening right now, during the darkest time of the year, when we are preparing for the most important holiday of our country.”

Alongside the facade lighting project in the building at Krišjāņa Valdemāra 3, the original oak windows on the first floor are being restored. The works are performed by JSC Būvuzņēmums Restaurators in accordance with the instructions of the National Cultural Heritage Board, preserving the authenticity of the neoclassical building. The works are planned to be completed at the beginning of the new year. The replacement of the elements (fan coils) of the historic building's heating and cooling system with modern and energy-efficient solutions continue, which will help ensure the longevity of the building and save costs in the long term. These works are performed by the construction contractor SIA Augstceltne. In total, about half a million euros are currently being invested in improving the functionality of the building, which is funded from SRE's capital investments and the building's savings.

The building at 3 K. Valdemāra Street, Riga, was built according to the project of architect A. Vite approved in 1912 as a building with apartments of the Mortgage Bank, and it was put into operation in 1914. At the end of 1919, the building became the “main” building of Riga for many years: the Cabinet of Ministers, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the State Chancellery and, for a short time, the Ministry of the Interior was located there. Kārlis Ulmanis, the family of Zigfrīds Anna Meierovics, V. Munters and other statesmen lived here. From the 1940s to the 1970s, the Central Committee of the Latvian Communist Party was housed in the building, but in 1990 Riga City Council moved into the building. The building has been owned by SRE since 2007 and since then it has been used for public administration purposes as an administrative building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Latvia.

The building is a local architectural heritage site. It is located in the territory of the historical centre of the city of Riga, a monument of UNESCO World Cultural Heritage and an urban monument of state significance, and is a part of it.

Last year, under the conditions of the pandemic, 17 nationally significant development projects with a total budget of 29.5 million euros were completed under the leadership of SRE. Under the conditions of the pandemic, in accordance with the precautionary and safety requirements, work on 54 different construction objects of national importance with a total project budget of 193 million euros continue under the management of SRE. SRE provides professional real estate management and administration for approximately 400 real estate properties with 1100 buildings of 1.02 million square metres and more than 3600 land properties of 9.6 million square metres. The capital company is one of 23 Latvian companies that have received the highest platinum award in the evaluation of the Sustainability Index of the Institute of Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability, confirming the good governance and sustainability of its operations. SRE was founded in 1996, and is 100% owned by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Latvia.