Pedestrian access to Tallinn's Linnahall will not be restricted

Tallinn's Linnahall.
Tallinn's Linnahall. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Pedestrian access to Tallinn's Linnahall will not be restricted after it was checked by experts after reports the roof had shaken during an event at the weekend.

During a drone show and concert on August 27, members of the audience watching the show from the rooftop of Tallinn's Linnahall arena felt the roof shake beneath their feet. An expert checked the structural strength of the building and found that access for pedestrians to the building's rooftop does not have to be restricted. 

"An expert who visited us did not give an opinion based on the external observation, but confirmed that there is no need to restrict access to the building for members of the public taking a walk," Anu Liinsoo, member of the management board of the company AS Tallinna Linnahall, told BNS.

However, according to Liinsoo, a more thorough examination of the building is necessary, which is planned to be commissioned.

"How long the expert survey takes, I cannot say yet," the manager of the city-owned company in charge of the currently disused building on the Tallinn seafront said. 

Liinsoo said at the end of last week that the condition of Linnahall's structure was thoroughly assessed by expert Aldur Parts in 2016 and 2019.

"In 2019, specifically the durability of the roof of the ice arena was assessed in connection with the shootings for the film Tenet, when heavy items were to be brought onto the roof of the ice arena for the shootings. In both cases, the experts concluded that no additional reinforcements were needed and that the normative load for the crossing should not exceed 400 kilograms per square meter, which was also the load foreseen in the design," Liinsoo told BNS. 

Last Friday's drone show, organized by Samsung Baltics, took place on the basis of a public event authorization, and according to the organizers, approximately 1,000 people were supposed to be present on the roof of the Linnahall. Admission was planned on the basis of invitations and a COVID certificate. A security service hired by the organizer of the event was to ensure public order.

"No permission would have been granted for a free access event. When conducting events, the organizers are guided by the requirements established by the government and the specific requirements of the coordinating authorities. According to the information available today, a failure occurred to ensure that only controlled and allowed people get access to the roof of the ice arena. The exact circumstances and the number of people still need to be clarified," Liinsoo said at the end of last week.

Linnahall is a large structure on the Tallinn seafront built in 1975-1980 for the sailing events of the 1980 Moscow Olympics in Tallinn, which was last open to the public in 2009. An expert evaluation of the building carried out in 2016 found that the structure of the building is in relatively good shape, save for the dolomite exterior wall cladding. 

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Editor: Helen Wright

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