Rīga to buy up the Lielie Kapi cemetery

The Riga City Council will buy Lielie Kapi cemetery from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Latvia (ELCL) for €372,000, Riga vice-mayor Andris Ameriks told the press Monday.

The city council's committee on expropriation matters met behind closed doors on Monday to decide on the acquisition of the historical cemetery and the price to be paid to the ELCL for the territory. Participating in the meeting where members of the city council's committee and Romans Ganins, secretary of the ELCL board.

The city council's representatives agreed to buy Lielie Kapi cemetery from the ELCL for €372,000, which is the market value of the land plot. Also, a 4,000 square meters large area in the neighborhood of Imanta will be reserved for construction of a new church building. The decision will be put before the Riga City Council for approval.

Olegs Burovs, director of the city council's municipal property department, said that the land under two Lutheran churches situated in the cemetery and also under certain buildings on Klusa Street would remain in the ELCL's possession.

There is also a plan to sign an agreement with Rigas Mezi municipal forest manager on the cemetery's management. The State Inspection for Heritage Protection of Latvia will be in charge of the heritage objects in the cemetery's territory.

As reported, the Riga City Council intends to purchase Lielie Kapi and Jekaba Kapi territories from the ELCL by the end of this year.

The decision comes after news of a planned tram line to the Skanste business area, a controversial subject as part of the line will run through the Lielie Kapi cemetery.

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