As Estonia organizes the renovation works of its national library expected to cost 1.3 million euros, Associations of Architects have called for the termination of the contract with a design bureau over perceived incompetence.
The Association of Architects and the Association of Interior Architects have called for the procurement contract given to Sirkel & Mall OU to be terminated. Both architect associations say they are “seriously concerned” about the designs for the National Library in Tallinn.
In a letter to Minister of Culture Tonis Lukas (Isamaa) the heads of the organizations argued that the amount of renovation work had been considerably larger than originally planned, including plans to change the exterior of the building.
“In our opinion, the main designer selected as a result of the public procurement does not have the competence and experience to organize an interior architecture competition,” they argue.
The letter describes the terms of the competition presented to the Association of Interior Architects as “extremely unprofessional” and as an “attempt to circumvent the special conditions of the Heritage Board, even though it is a building under heritage conservation status.”
State real estate company Riigi Kinnisvara AS (RKAS), which signed a design agreement with Sirkel & Mall in August, did not organize the architectural competition, leaving it to the latter instead.
In spite of the concerns of the architects, RKAS does not plan to cancel the design procurement or terminate the contract with Sirkel & Mall OU, RKAS project manager Priit Puss said.
The building of the Estonian National Library was declared a national monument by the Heritage Board in 2017. In August the government allocated EUR 1.3 million euros from the state budget to start the renovation process, which was expected to begin in 2022. (BNN/Business World Magazine)