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Riga Castle restoration proceeding apace

A year-and-a-half after the accidental fire during renovation works at the Riga Castle the historic architectural monument has recovered its roof this week, LSM learned from the restoration experts.

The specialists also noted the end of the drying of the foundation mortar and mold-removal efforts imperative from the extinguishing of the fire last summer.

The state property management agency Valsts nekustamie īpašumi (VNI) officially confirmed the completion of the Castle roof construction as well as the restoration of most of the windows, plumbing and electrical engineering works. Work on the interior will continue during the winter season.

The fire held back scheduled and long-overdue restoration works by at least a half-year, say experts. The restoration team hopes that the President and the Chancellery of the President will be able to return to its work premises exactly a year from now.

The sound of hammers and construction work clang from every corner as parquet floors are being laid and ornate wall- and ceiling-paintings will be refreshed after the sensitive desalination process is done by the end of the year, says restoration expert Inese Ozolina.

 “Thanks to our German colleagues we got a hand over the microbiological pollution that got in from the moisture,” she said.

Passersby can note how the exterior walls have gotten a fresh facelift of yellow-toned paint selected by the Castle Renewal Council to complement the older white-grey color on the rest of the fortress structure’s walls.

Restoration works developer Re&Re has refused to accept that its work crew was to blame for the outbreak of the fire on the roof. Board member Didzis Putnins told LR that the police freeze on the firm’s assets was reduced to 1.5m and that this has not affected the ongoing restoration works.

VNI urges Lacplesa Day celebrants to refrain from placing candles near the walls of the Riga Castle fortress on November 11, contrary to tradition in previous years which is damaging and expensive to clean.

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