Preparations for Art Academy’s New Building Underway ({{commentsTotal}})

The coalition agreement signed by the Reform Party and Social Democrats on Thursday also includes a commitment to make preparations for relocating the new building of the Academy of Arts to North Tallinn.

According to Rector Signe Kivi, an architectural competition will be announced in April and it will be clear by the end of the summer who will develop the new main building on Kotzebue Street in Kalamaja, near the train station.

The academy's previous main building was in the city center, across the street from the Viru shopping complex, but legal problems delayed construction at that site and funding was withdrawn.

Funding for the new project will be provided by the structural funds of the EU. The condition for the funding is paying off the 1.8 million euro debt to the Archimedes Foundation - something already included in the academy’s budget, Kivi said, adding that it would make the academy happy if the state shared some of the burden.

The new building would house all departments of the academy, currently scattered around the city.

Helen Põllo, who heads the department of higher education at the Ministry of Education and Research, said that in discussions with the academy the ministry has suggested significant cuts to the prospective area of used space but ultimately, it is up to the academy to make calculations on area and maintenance costs.

Commenting on possibly abolishing of certain subjects to avoid duplication, Põllo said the study of architecture and possible co-operation and common curricula with the Tallinn University of Technology and the University of Applied Sciences require a closer look.

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