Tallinn City Government has proposed leasing some of the main football grounds in the capital to top-flight clubs playing there, on a longer-term basis than has been the case up to now.
Since the terms of the lease agreements will include requirements for the football ground to be made available for youth and schools' sports training sessions, the argument runs that the change will help to support youth football development.
Deputy Mayor of Tallinn Tiit Terik (Center) says that while the football clubs in question are already using the city's facilities under lease agreements, a longer leasehold period will provide the clubs with stability when planning their activities.
Terik said: "Tallinn's priority is to support sports activities on favorable and stable terms to encourage physical activity among the youth. Before signing the new contract with extended terms, prices were also adjusted, but it is important to note that clubs would no longer have a direct investment obligation."
"The longer lease period gives them the confidence that they can continue their activities and provide training for children in the long term, which is extremely important for the health and athletic development of young people," the deputy mayor continued, via a city government press release.
The development means that Hiiu staadion, Nõmme Kalju's home ground, Wismari staadion, where Esiliiga (second tier) Tallinna JK Legion play their home fixtures, and Võidujooksu jalgpalliväljak (FC Ajax Lasnamäe, a top-flight club in the women's league, fourth-tier for the men's team) will be on longer leases to the respective clubs, if the proposal is approved.
Additionally, the Lasnamäe field located on Punane in Lasnamäe and used by fourth division team FCI Tallinn will be leased to that club.
The leasehold terms will be for 10 years.
Rents range from €1,248, through to €2,560 per month (plus VAT), while rents will rise 2 percent per annum at the start of each year.
Clubs will also pay all ancillary costs, including utility bills and pitch maintenance, associated with the use of the stadiums and are responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the municipal property and the land servicing it, including snow removal from football fields.
The tenant clubs will also be required to permit local schools to use facilities for their physical education clubs, and other Tallinn football teams to be granted access to use the grounds for training.
Tallinn City Council will discuss the City Government's proposal at a session scheduled for November 16 and, if the proposal passes a vote, the new regime will be in place from December 4.
Editor: Andrew Whyte