Ceilings on the verge of collapse, leaky roofs, windows threatening to break, electrical wiring from the 1960s, air running out during theater performances — these are just some of the problems facing various cultural institutions and properties across Estonia, 15 of which the Ministry of Culture deemed a potential threat to life, and for which the ministry has allocated €2 million.
The ministry's repair budget includes 57 items totaling €1.77 million. Of this, nearly €740,000 has been earmarked for facilities whose issues have been labeled a threat to life. Another nearly €230,000 has been set aside in reserve.
The Estonian Drama Theatre will receive €120,000 for a major overhaul of its small hall, as its indoor climate has become dangerous in warmer weather conditions. The explanation notes that it's not surprising on warm days when someone in the public faints from a lack of air and warm temperatures. The €120,000 will be put toward upgrading the hall's ventilation system and installing an air conditioning system.
The Drama Theatre will also receive an additional €82,000 for an overhaul of its stairs. The theater's limestone stairs have been in active use for more than a century, and some of its stairs have worn down to a critical degree and required reinforcing. The theater commissioned an expert analysis of the stairs, which determined some of the stairs to be in dangerous shape.
The National Library of Estonia is to receive €150,000 for a new security system, as the current system is outdated and over time reached the point where the system is managed by one person, but cannot be taken over by another company.
Another €20,000 has been earmarked to pay for repairs to water damages caused by leaks in the library's roof. The leaks are under control by now, however the situation remains critical on the fifth floor of the building's northwestern wing, where water continues to drain via the terrace into fourth floor structures and rooms. Leaks in the the reception center of the library's legal deposit copy center have been stopped, but the water damage caused by the leaks has yet to be repaired.
€19,000 will also go toward renovating the library's public hallways, whose tin drop ceilings are in part dangerous and in danger of falling. The explanation notes that this danger of falling has already materialized once already. Lighting in the hallways is likewise outdated and not grounded according to requirements, for which the library has already received a precept.
Estonian Public Broadcasting (ERR) will receive €144,396 for the overhaul of lifting systems installed on the ceilings of its television studio. The structures of ERR's television studios' ceilings, including its lifting systems, were completed in 1973. The mechanisms in use are original, but all wiring and moving parts are completely worn out, and heavy television equipment attached to the ceiling could fall at any time.
ERR will also receive €19,200 for the Television Building's automatic fire alarm systems and €32,700 for the installation of new fire doors.
The Narva Museum Foundation will receive €110,500 for the securing of the cliff along the city's waterfront promenade. Pedestrians are at risk of rocks falling from the cliff on which Narva Castle is located.
The museum will also receive €43,000 for repairs to the currently leaking roof over the workshops in its Northern Yard, where it is currently dangerous and uncomfortable to work.
Eesti Kontsert will receive funding for six institutions, three of which have been labeled as having problems posing a threat to life. Replacing the doors at St. John's Church in St. Petersburg, Russia, will cost €25,000. Another €9,500 will go toward exterior sliding doors at Vanemuine Concert Hall, and €38,000 for the replacement of evacuation lights at Pärnu Concert Hall.
€43,000 has been earmarked for emergency repairs to the facade of the Russian Theatre in Tallinn, where plaster covering the building's insulation is crumbling and cement panels used to cover ventilation pipes on the facade are cracking, posing a threat to passers-by.
The Russian Theatre will also receive €17,000 for the updating of the building's ventilation and heating systems and the partial replacement of pipes as well as the addition of a damper to the building's fire water pumphouse, which was noted as a threat to life.
A total of €12,000 has been earmarked for the Estonian History Museum which is to be spent on repairs to the building located at Lai 14 in Tallinn.
The Ministry of Culture is allocating €60,000 to Rakvere Theatre for the renovation of its small building's ventilation system. The explanation notes that the ventilation system in question was installed last century and has since proven outdated. The theater frequently receives complaints about a lack of air during performances and people leaving early because they did not feel well.
Theatre Vanemuine will receive €64,000 for the updating of its main breaker together with electrical wiring. The explanation notes that the building's current electrical system dates back to 1967 and is dangerous.
The Estonian Open Air Museum Foundation will receive funding for repairs to seven structures. The biggest sum, €45,000, will go toward repairs to the museum's woodshop, whose ceiling is in danger of collapsing and has been labeled a threat to life.
The Estonian National Museum, meanwhile, will receive €50,000 for repairs to Raadi Manor's gatehouse and gate.
The Museum of Viljandi is to be allocated €85,440 for the renovation of the facade of its exhibition building, and the Võru Institute €46,560 for interior renovations at its Kreutzwald Museum.
The full list also includes several other institutions and properties to be allocated much smaller sums as well. For example, the Ministry of Culture is allocating €1,750 to Kuressaare Theatre for the replacement of the windows in its theater-level coatroom, as this job has been put off for years and the current windows have reached the point where they are at risk of falling out altogether.
Editor: Aili Vahtla