State real estate manager Riigi Kinnisvara AS (RKAS) is planning to sell the Liberty manor complex in Kakumäe, Tallinn, which has previously been discussed as a potential presidential residence to replace Kadriorg.
"There is no other option than to sell Liberty. At this moment, we are preparing to do so," RKAS real estate development director Mihkel Mäger told ERR. "We wish to involve the Heritage Protection Board and the Open Air Museum in the process so that all necessary requirements and conditions would be fulfilled."
The RKAS representative said the public auction for the sale of the manor complex will be announced in the spring of 2022.
The Liberty manor complex
In 2014, the Liberty manor complex was handed over to RKAS with a plan to turn the complex into a presidential residence, which would have replaced the on in Kadriorg Palace.
The plan began lagging in autumn 2014 already, however, when the public procurement for the design of the complex failed for the first time. The first construction tender also failed because no company was willing to submit an offer within the €4.4 million estimated cost of the tender agreement.
Due to the delay, the Office of the President was unable to reach a decision regarding the establishment of the complex during the term of office of former President Toomas Hendrik Ilves, due to which the decision reached the desk of President Kersti Kaljulaid, who assumed office in October 2016.
In February 2017, the Office of the President decided to abandon the plan. That December, then-Minister of Public Administration Jaak Aab gave hope to the Open Air Museum that the latter may be given possession of the Liberty Manor building. The museum, which used the Liberty estate prior to 2014, said that the renovation of the manor would cost €2.8 million, which it hoped to receive from the state.
The property comprises seven complete buildings, some ruins, and covers close to 7 hectares (a little over 17 acres) of mostly forested land. The villa was built in 1905 for the wealthy banker Egon Koch. The three-floor wooden villa is roomy at around 500 square meters and served as a summer house for Koch's family.
In August, it was announced that the official presidential residence in Kadriorg will instead get an extensive redesign estimated to cost a total of €16.8 million.
Editor: Kristjan Kallaste