Architect"s vision of the Silver Grove on the Hill of Songs completed within the first stage works of Mezaparks Great Bandstand Phase B construction
On 10 June, representatives of the Riga Interim Administration together with government ministers, contractors, architects, organisers of the Song and Dance Festival, chief conductors and representatives of institutions and the media involved in the project became acquainted with the first stage works of Mezaparks Great Bandstand Phase B construction.
Minister of Culture Nauris Puntulis pointed out: “Mezaparks Great Bandstand is becoming one of the most noticeable symbols of the country's creative economy, with a great contribution to the development of the Song Festival tradition.”
Edvīns Balševics, Head of the Riga Interim Administration, said at the event: “There are always great celebrations in Mezaparks. But now, the reconstructed bandstand will make it possible to host even bigger and greater celebrations. This architectural solution is not only the pride of Riga and Latvia, but is also a facility of global significance.”
Mezaparks Great Bandstand takes the form of the Silver Grove on the Hill of Songs as designed by architects Juris Poga and Austris Mailītis, with branched tree patterns and other metal structures made of 1,766.4 tons of metal. The unique structure is made of columns and trusses and reaches towards the sky up to 35.8 metres. There are 510 acoustic shields hung in the metal trusses. Therefore, the project is unique in Europe and truly complex with an individual acoustic solution.
Valdis Koks, the Project Director from General Partnership “LNK, RERE”, emphasised: “Today, I wish to praise all who took part in the construction process and thank you for the work we did together in such a short and tense period. Our cooperation and the result-oriented contracting entity – the Property Department of the Riga City Council – facilitated the whole process and, as a result, we now have a world-class facility in Latvia. Despite the changes due to the pandemic, we stuck to the plan and completed all the work a month ahead of schedule. We have handed over the stage to the organisers and participants of the Song Festival, and the next year they will be able to reap the fruits of the technologies built in the facility.”
The new bandstand will accommodate 12,874 choir singers, which is almost twice as much as before as well as dancers on the expanded dance floor. After the reconstruction, the bandstand will be more convenient, accessible, and safe for the participants of the festival. The arrangement of steps and seats is especially well thought out – the steps are made of reinforced concrete structures, while the seats take the shape of removable wooden benches with a special protective layer. There is an adiabatic system installed in the bandstand, which will allow the singers to cool down in hot weather by cooling the heated air with the help of water mist.
The first stage of Phase B construction works began on 5 October 2018 after signing a contract between the contracting entity (Property Department of the Riga City Council) and general partnership “LNK, RERE”. The construction works of the premises of the Mezaparks Great Bandstand will be completed in the final second stage of Phase B by December 2021; on 21 May, the Property Department of the Riga City Council announced a procurement procedure for the aforementioned construction works.