Tallinn's Koidula tänav to be revamped as 'unique' literary street

Kadriorg's Koidula tänav.
Kadriorg's Koidula tänav. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Tallinn's Koidula tänav may be revamped as a 'unique' literary street if plans put forward by Tallinn Literary Center come to fruition. But the development will take at least five years.

The center and architecture firm KAMP have developed proposed the idea that will highlight the Kadriorg street's literary heritage. KAMP has created an initial design for the revamp.

There are plans to reduce speed limits, make the street safe for everyone aged between eight and 80 years old and add additional information signs, KAMP's Peeter Loo said.

Loo said Tammsaare House Museum wants to connect the literary dots with Koidula tänav, which is named after famous author and poet Lydia Koidula. The museum celebrates the life of author A. H. Tammsaare.

He said he wants the street to feel like a "courtyard" and be safe for all users.

"There is a narrow road in the middle of the street and there are no curbs which ensure free movement for cyclists. There could also be information boards created by the Tammsaare House Museum and benches that can also be used during the literature festival," Loo said, speaking about his design.

Tallinn Literary Festival in Kadriorg, Saturday September 11. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Tallinn Literary Center's Maarja Vaino said the technical conditions for the competition have been agreed as well as the new traffic layout. The plans were introduced to residents last week.

"The process continues and the project will move to the city of Tallinn next," she said.

Vaino believes Koidula tänav is a "unique street" the likes of which cannot be found elsewhere in Europe, although Paris' literary quarter comes close.

"It is nice when culture is made more visible in the street space, for example, we could hold small outdoor exhibitions. For example, when it's [poet] Juhan Viiding's birthday," she said.

Tallinn City Center Council also likes the idea. District Elder Monika Haukanõmm (Center) said it is a "logical continuation" of the street's reading corner.

The reading corner on Koidula tänava. Source: ERR

"I believe that when the literary street is completed, it will become one of the region's attractions," she said.

Haukanõmm said Tallinn's Environment and Public Utilities Board and Transport board are also involved in the plans.

"If the idea develops further, we must continue to involve the community in order to find the best solution and then deal with the design conditions and the project," she added.

If the plans are greenlit, it will likely take five years for the development to come into being Vaino and Loo estimate.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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