“At the turn of the year, extensive dismantling works were started at the Latvian Puppet Theatre at K. Barona Street 16/18, Riga, under the supervision of SJSC “State Real Estate”, in order to prepare the building for the implementation of the renovation and energy efficiency project. The findings during the dismantling indicate the need to find additional solutions for those already planned in the construction project, expanding the scope of replacement of roof structures, thus ensuring the longevity of the building,” informs Jānis Ivanovskis-Pigits, Director of Development at SRE.
At the end of 2021, the contractor started extensive dismantling work, under the supervision of the SRE, in the historic two-storey building, built in 1911. Over the decades, the Puppet Theatre has seen significant deterioration in its technical condition, which the user has tried to address with its own resources, but significant improvements are only possible through a comprehensive reconstruction of the building, therefore the initially planned energy efficiency improvement activities of the building will be supplemented with the necessary design solutions, which envisage investments in the building’s construction and interior repairs, attracting the state funding.
"Implementing renovation projects in historic buildings is always a challenge. It must be understood that we are going through history, therefore, often during the dismantling process, unplanned discoveries occur, which require new solutions. Based on the conclusion of construction experts on the exposed building structures, we decided to expand the scope of replacement of the building's roof structures. In the coming weeks, a supplemented building construction solution will be developed and handed over for building expertise. Construction works currently take place according to the schedule. The works related to the reinforcement of the foundations and piling works will continue, which will prevent further setting and deformation of the building structures and will ensure the longevity of the building,” says J. Ivanovskis-Pigits.
Dismantling of the old roof and installation of electrical installations will soon begin on the construction site . Further works are related to the construction of a new exterior wall, reconstruction of the roof and other works aimed at ensuring the mechanical strength and stability of the building, successively moving to the reconstruction of the interior and the construction of engineering networks.
According to the project solutions developed by SIA “Livland Group”, the aesthetic and technical condition of the Puppet Theatre building will be improved, theatre employees and visitors will have a more pleasant working environment, at the same time thermal energy savings of approximately 50% will be achieved, allowing to divert the saved resources to other goals. During the works, exterior walls, base, attic and roof of the building will be insulated, windows and wooden exterior doors will be replaced, the existing heating unit will be modernised, the heating system and ventilation system will be rebuilt and modernised. By insulating the roof and replacing its cover, the ceiling of the small hall will be raised for the convenience of both spectators and actors, which will provide an opportunity to diversify the range of performances available to spectators and also to stage puppet plays. Construction works are planned to be completed in 2023.
The construction works are performed by the general partnership “P and P BŪVNIECĪBAS GRUPA”, contract price 2.75 million euros without VAT. The renovation project of the Latvian Puppet Theatre is financed from the funding attracted in cooperation with the Ministry of Culture from the second round of project applications, selection of the European Union funds Operational Programme ‘Growth and Employment’ 4.2.1 of the specific support objective ‘To promote the increase of energy efficiency in public and residential buildings’ and 184.108.40.206 of the specific support objective ‘To promote the increase of energy efficiency in public buildings’ and state budget funds (including Covid-19 funding for stimulating the economy through investments in construction).
Building at the Kr.Barona iela 16/18, Riga, has cultural and historical value. In the two-storey building that was built in 1911, according to the project of architect Ernests Pole, a cinema, a pharmacy, a book printing and stamp workshop, a café and several shops were located. The building was put into operation in 1924. The Latvian Puppet Theatre has been operating here since 1944. The small building is located in the protection zone of the UNESCO World Cultural and Natural Heritage Site ‘Historic Centre of Riga’. Over time, the building has been rebuilt several times (there is no precise information on these rebuilding processes), but fundamental renovation work has not been carried out here.
SRE currently continues works on 54 different construction sites of national importance, with a total project budget of 223 million euros. SRE provides professional real estate management and administration for approximately 400 real estate properties with 1100 buildings and 1.02 million square metres of space, and more than 3600 land properties of 9.6 million square metres. The company was founded in 1996 and is 100% owned by the Ministry of Finance.