Tallink Grupp, its largest shareholder AS Infortar, and the City of Tallinn have signed an MoU to develop the city-owned architectural monument Tallinn City Hall and its adjacent properties.
The common vision of the parties is to establish an attractive, wholly-functioning conference and concert centre with an accompanying port, hotel, business centre, and leisure facilities to the Tallinn City Hall and its surroundings.
"The goal is to create a prominent architectural and recreational 'landmark' open to local citizens and tourists arriving with ferries from the Baltic Sea area and thus re-opening this seaside area of Tallinn to townspeople and further increasing the number of tourists visiting Tallinn," the Estonian ferry line wrote in a press release.
The parties will over the coming months set the cooperation principles and prepare an activity plan. To carry out the €300m-worth project, they'll establish a joint venture, in which the City of Tallinn will hold a 34% stake, while Tallink Grupp and AS Infortar - 33% apiece. Upon establishment, the parties will make initial contributions pro rata to their shareholding and in the total amount of €1m. A competition will be launched for determining the best architectural concept.
The estimated construction period of the new centre and adjoining buildings is three years from the point when all the necessary permits have been obtained and all the required contracts have been signed.
Conditionally, after completion of the preparation phase, obtaining all the necessary permits and approvals and on meeting other pre-conditions, the City of Tallinn will contribute the City Hall and its adjacent properties to the joint venture and Tallink Grupp and AS Infortar will both make €10m cash contributions. The two will guarantee the necessary capital required for the investments without the City of Tallinn having any additional financial obligations. The project is expected to be financed both from equity and from other financial instruments.
"The City of Tallinn and the Estonian government have long been waiting for a viable proposal and vision for the listed City Hall concert hall property and a development proposal for an international conference and concert centre, which would help give the Tallinn and Estonian tourism sector the development boost it needs," Paavo Nõgene, CEO, Tallink Grupp, commented.
He furthered, "Estonia desperately needs a conference and concert hall that would seat 5,000 plus guests and would enable bringing large conferences and cultural events requiring a large and good quality hall to Estonia. In order to successfully compete with the other capitals in the Baltic Sea region, such as Helsinki, Riga and Stockholm, Tallinn needs new opportunities for developing tourism and it needs a big step forward."
He also underlined, "The inclusion of a new port into this equation is a key factor which will allow for a profitable operation of the entire project and will liven up the whole City Hall area."
Photo: Bjarke Ingels Group