New library to boost local economy

  • 2011-11-17
  • From wire reports

PROFIT CENTER: In addition to reading and study facilities, other activities hope to increase the library’s income.

RIGA - The opening of the new Latvian National Library (LNB) building will contribute to the development of the entire Pardaugava area of Riga, Culture Minister Zaneta Jaunzeme-Grende said in an interview, reports LETA. Jaunzeme-Grende hopes that Riga Mayor Nils Usakovs (Harmony Center) and the Riga City Council “are well aware of this.”
The minister believes that the new culture center will be popular with the general public, and new cafes will open near the building, whereas the value of property in the vicinity will increase. The Riga City Council should also make a contribution to the development of the new edifice’s infrastructure, believes Jaunzeme-Grende.

The reduction in the funding for the LNB project provided for in the budget consolidation plans actually means specification of money flows and payments schedule in 2013, said the minister. The construction of the ‘Palace of Light’ will continue at the current pace, and the new library building is to open in the fall of 2013, after the voluminous collection of the library is moved there.

Jaunzeme-Grende explained that the planned 2.5 million lats (3.5 million euros) reduction in the funding for the LNB project next year does not mean that the funding for the project will be reduced by this amount, but that this part of the funding will be provided at the beginning of 2013, not at the end of 2012 as planned. Therefore, the LNB construction process will not be affected, said the minister, emphasizing that this reduction is the only budget cut for the Culture Ministry.

The minister also said that the building’s costs will be reduced with the help of various measures, such as improved building insulation, and the new LNB complex will be able to earn much more than the current building - 400,000 lats a year compared to 36,000 lats now.

The events taking place at the LNB building will attract wide audiences of various ages: there will be presentations of the latest IT innovations, lectures, exhibitions and much more, promised the minister.