Family gives amazing free upgrade to bus stop

Tired of standing in the snow and rain, a family near the town of Smiltene in northern Latvia has given their local bus stop an impressive upgrade.

The Krigers family has transformed the humble real estate plot into a part-artwork, part- recycling project, part-terminus and part-Hobbit house using a variety of materials including hay bales, logs and empty bottles, as these pictures show.

According to Inguna Johansone of the 'Ziemeļlatvija' (Northern Latvia) newspaper, family members got fed up waiting for their bus stop to be improved so took matters into their own hands and rapidly transformed it into not only a very usable bus stop but something of a local tourist attraction despite its remote location.

"In Smiltene area we think of doing things ourselves instead of having to wait, to make requests, to get permission and then hope something will happen," Johansone told Latvian Radio.

This can-do attitude was taken up by Tomas and Liga Krigers and their family who resolved that no longer would they stand at the stop, wet and freezing, while waiting for something to happen from on high.

They set to work and in a very short time had produced their novel eco-shelter, which even features a trendy grass roof.

"Everyone is very happy with the result, even the roads authority," said Johansone, explaining that even though the structure is not on the family's land, they obtained permission to do the work and its has received all necessary certification "so that it doesn't fall on someone's head." 

News about the do-it-yourself project comes just a week after a wealthy businessman in another part of the country paid for the potholed public road near his house to be asphalted and opens the exciting possibility that in the absence of official action, Latvians may soon take the provision of transport infrastructure across the country into their own hands.

It's good to know that even if something as massive as the Rail Baltica project hits problems, there's probably some creative country-dweller out there who can patch something together using string, duct tape and a couple of beams from the old barn.

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