Construction of the proposed Tallinn Hospital, regardless of it depending on European Union funding, is a priority for Tallinn, as is the renovation of the Linnahall, Mayor of Tallinn, Mihhail Kõlvart (Center) told ETV current affairs show "Esimene stuudio" Wednesday night.
"Tallinn Hospital has to come. This is definitely an important priority for Tallinn. Yes, we depend on the European Commission's decision. To this day, there's hope that the state can be involved in the project. I think that it's more than logical," Kõlvart said.
For the €520 million facility, which would concentrate services at the moment spread across three, Soviet-built hospitals in central and western Tallinn, Estonia has submitted an application for €280 million to the European Commission. Earlier, €380 in funding was applied for, but the sum was considered too large by Brussels. Kõlvart said that Tallinn could add €100 million itself, but with no help from the state at all, a difficult decision needs to be made.
"When realistically we think how are we going to handle it - and when the decision is going to be €0, then the load is not realistic for Tallinn," Kõlvart said.
Another project that Tallinn has decided to move on with, is the iconic Linnahall. Currently, €40 million is allocated for that purpose. By Tallinn's estimates, the reconstruction would cost more like €140 million.
"At a time when construction prices are increasing as they are currently, and the state doesn't support the construction of Tallinn Hospital, then we have to see what's realistic. But there's another scenario: Looking for private partners to optimize the costs," Kõlvart said.
"But a certain plan is that we will finish this project. The City Hall is not just a construction site for us. The plan is much wider - this is the city space conception," Kõlvart said.
Kõlvart said that he also likes the idea of the Estonian National Opera new building being adjacent to the Linnahall. "As I've said that would be the ideal approach - there would be a cultural quarter. I would love that approach," he said.
Support of the film quarter left on hold
Kõlvart said that there are still projects that the city could or could support, such as the film quarter on the Kopli peninsula, which was left out of the list of state-funded cultural projects.
"We had a plan to support the quarter. As of today, a decision has been made that first, the details regarding bigger construction projects need to be clear," Kõlvart said.
Editor: Roberta Vaino