Opening of the Railway Station Bolderāja 2


SIA Skonto Būve, in cooperation with A/S BMGS, has completed the construction of the new station Bolderāja 2 with a connection road to terminals on Krievu Island and the object was delivered to the contracting authority the State Joint-Stock Company (VAS) “Latvijas Dzelzceļš”.

The aim of the project is to increase the total capacity of Riga railway junction and to improve train traffic safety and reliability.

The project is related to relieving the historical centre of Riga and the area of UNESCO World Heritage Monument on the right bank of the Daugava from freight handling activities by relocating cargo terminals from Andrejsala and Export Port to the newly constructed area of Riga Freeport on Krievu Island on the left bank of the Daugava, thus facilitating the development of these territories in line with the use specified in the Riga Development Plan and balancing the freight turnover of Riga Freeport between the left and the right bank of the Daugava.

"Without doubt, this is one of the major transport infrastructure projects in Latvia and the Baltics and Skonto Būve is pleased to participate in it and contribute to the development of a modern city. I am proud of what Skonto Būve has achieved together with its partners. Riga and Latvia have been given a new, outstanding traffic unit, which improves the international competitiveness of Riga Port, while Skonto Būve and other partners have acquired competence, which we are certain we will be able to “export”, that is, use this experience and know-how in similar projects both in Latvia and abroad. It should be mentioned that this project is an excellent example of the employment of financing from the European Union’s funds. The responsible approach, professionalism and accurately formulated project objectives of Latvijas Dzelzceļš as a contracting authority permitted the contractors both to complete works in good quality and on time and to start with accurate financial calculations, which did not change during the implementation of the project,” stated Guntis Rāvis, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of SIA Skonto Būve.

VAS “Latvijas Dzelzceļš” explained that the station would not be fully exploited during the next two years, but after that it is planned that 500 coal carriages could be transported to Krievu Island from the station Bolderāja 2 daily. It will be also possible to transport other types of cargo.

The project was co-financed from the European Union’s Cohesion Fund. The project costs were 41.2 million euros, of which 29.9 million euros were the co-financing of the Cohesion Fund.

Photos: E.Matvejeva, LETA

Atrium glass frame installation in the Stradins Hospital’s new building partially finished


Pauls Stradins Clinical University Hospital’s new building is becoming increasingly brighter – the general partnership SBRE has partially finished the installation of the atrium glass frame, which connects separate wards. In addition, in November another symbolic and very important step of the project was completed - a temporary heating system was installed for two of the hospital’s wards in November. This means that the new ward will be provided with heating during the coldest period of the year, so that the planned interior works may be finished.

Currently, partial assembly of the atrium glass frame and shielding has been completed. Assembly of the outer wall panels for three blocks of the new building has almost been completed as well, work on the ventilated façade construction has been started. Landscaping work will continue until the start of the winter period, and will be finished after the winter break. Currently, construction of roofs, the loading and the emergency ramp, the outer layers of the green atrium cover is being carried out in the object.

SBRE finished the assembly of the new building’s composite roof structure at the beginning of November. Currently, concreting of the covering in the tower section of the building continues.

As noted by the SBRE project manager Valdis Koks, active construction works are currently being carried out in all sections of the construction project. “After completion of the building’s framework construction, we set up heating in the first and second section of the new building, in order to carry out the interior works. Both external and internal communications are now being installed in all sections of the building, and all the planned construction works are going according to schedule,” tells V. Koks.

It is planned to build several connections from the new building to the existing wards of the hospital, therefore currently construction works on underground corridors and elevator towers are being carried out.

The general contractor of the construction continues to increase the number of employees working on the construction site. In November, more than 300 employees were employed on the construction site.

Photographer: G.Ivuskans

The project of development of infrastructure on Krievu Island has been put into operation


On 16 November, in Riga, a festive ceremony took place on Krievu Island – a general partnership BMGS S¸ which includes companies such as Skonto Būve Ltd., and JSC BMGS, delivered the new infrastructure object of Krievu Island port to the Freeport of Riga. Hence, construction of the largest project in the history of the port, also significant on a national level, “Development of Infrastructure on Krievu Island for the Transfer of Port Activities from the City Centre” is officially complete.

Skonto Būve has a historic opportunity to participate in the construction of Riga City and the Freeport of Riga. Completion of the Krievu Island project and the development of the surrounding area means a significant increase in the international competitiveness of the Freeport of Riga. This, therefore, allows new ways for development and cooperation to be pursued by both the Freeport and Latvian and foreign companies. The Krievu Island project concerns not only the Freeport of Riga. I am truly proud that Skonto Būve has participated, currently participates and will continue to actively participate in the economic development of Riga and Latvia. The gloomy and bleak port territory on the right bank of the Daugava will now gradually disappear, opening a wide area to create a new recreational, cultural and entertainment space for the citizens of Riga. I can note that the Freeport of Riga and the construction workers had a clear goal, which contributed to good, cohesive work and the successful completion of the project,” tells Guntis Rāvis, the Chairman of the Board of Skonto Būve Ltd.

133.65 million euros were invested into the implementation of the project. Of these, the EU Cohesion Fund’s input amounts to 77.19 million euros, while the Freeport of Riga has provided 56.46 million euros (a loan from Nordea Bank and Pohjola Bank).

The project “Development of Infrastructure on Krievu Island for the Transfer of Port Activities from the City Centre” was launched in 2006. During those nine years an environmental impact assessment was performed and the technical design was elaborated, EU funding was attracted, as well as practical construction work was completed.

Krievu Island now boasts deep-water berths and necessary infrastructure that complies with the best global port practices, which allows further terminal development. For it to happen, 4 dry bulk cargo handling berths with a total length of 1,180 metres and a depth at the berths of 15.5 m were built on Krievu Island by the general partnership BMGS S. Also, all the necessary road and rail access tracks and engineering communications to the port area were built.

The total capacity of the Krievu Island project is 20 million tonnes of bulk cargo per year. During the construction process 24,000 tonnes of pipes and 3,100 tonnes of sheet piles were immersed 10-28 metres deep; a 1489 metre long berth wall was constructed, which has a set of 51 mooring platforms and 123 sets of rejecting units; deepening of the river bed was carried out – 2.7 million cubic metres of gravel was drained out, allowing vessels with a draft of up to 15 meters to be hosted, but potentially – up to 17 metres.

Approximately 20,000 cubic metres of concrete and 2,500 tonnes of fixtures have been used in the construction; 6176 paving slabs and 463 core slabs were prepared and delivered to the object. In addition, flooding of the territory in the amount of 300,000 cubic metres was carried out, and 600 metres of the banks of Hapaka ditch were reinforced.

Photo: E.Matvejeva, V.Koziols

Skonto Buve finishes Phase 1 of Construction of the Northern Pier in Riga International Airport


In the middle of September Skonto Būve Ltd. has finished work in frames of the project “Stage 5 of Expansion of the Passenger Terminal at SJSC Riga International Airport – Phase 1 of Construction of the Northern Pier”.

Stage 5 of Expansion of the Passenger Terminal at SJSC Riga International Airport included the construction of a building dimension (building) – Northern Pier with the stationary part of the passenger bridge, which was built at a distance of 240 m from the current pier building, as well as construction of the linking gallery, which connects the pier with the existing complex of terminal buildings.

Stage 5 of expansion of the terminal–aircraft pier building project has been divided into two phases of building works.

During Phase 1 of Construction of the Northern Pier, which was implemented by Skonto Būve Ltd., all constructive elements of the building were built, including the exterior finishing as well as construction of a part of the territory, the interior finishing of the gallery building, and adaptation thereof for the temporary functions according to the needs of the airport. 

A bypass road was built around the Northern Pier, as well as the main northbound service road along the linking gallery, which continues up to the cargo terminal area. This service road ensures the servicing of aircraft stands at the new pier, as well as in the territory to the north from the pier.

The principal functions of the pier building will include servicing of outbound and inbound passengers – ensuring the process of boarding and disembarking.

Crosses of the Riga Orthodox Christ’s Birth Cathedral were lit up in gold


In early September the crosses of the Riga Orthodox Christ’s Birth Cathedral were lit up in gold, thus completing the thirteen-year-long restoration works of the cathedral within the scope of the charity campaign SVET under the supervision of Skonto Būve specialists.

The beginnings of the SVET charity campaign can be found in 2002. The campaign was initiated by Guntis Rāvis and the leading construction company Skonto Būve. Restoration works were performed in several stages.

The initial stage of the campaign was devoted to thorough research work and in 2005 the façade of the church was restored. The unique wall paintings were completed in the interior of the cathedral and also the rear partial wall, which was not painted up to now, was painted in the spirit of Orthodox traditions.

During the next stage in 2001 the 80-square-metre belfry dome was gilded with the highest quality 980-proof gold leaves and the two-metre-high cross was fully made anew and gilded. The gilding process was managed by Gazis Habibuļins – one of the rare old masters of restoration works in Latvia. According to Mr. Habibuļins, the gilding is not only the most beautiful, but also the most sustainable dome covering, which does not rust or oxidise for a long time – it will not need to be restored earlier than in 40–50 years from now.

The largest volume of work – gilding of the central dome of the cathedral – was performed in 2014. Its 400-square-metre-wide surface was coated with 980-proof gold, using 57, 740 golden leaves in the gilding.

The gilding of the three small crosses of the entry and the four dome crosses of the cathedral were commenced in the summer of 2015. Project Manager of the company Skonto Būve Modris Seļakovs says that when commencing the work of the gilding design for the crosses of the cathedral, the Orthodox Church wished to install the traditional crosses without decorations above the cathedral corresponding to the Orthodox trends, but the Latvian State Inspection for Heritage Protection asked to preserve the existing form of the crosses, thus emphasising the value of the authentic crosses in the historical heritage of the building and Riga urban construction.

The gilding of the three small crosses of the entry and four dome crosses of the cathedral was carried out by Laura Ikerte – a gilding specialist certified by the Latvian State Inspection for Heritage Protection under supervision of the old master G. Habibuļins. In addition, 980-proof gold was used for gilding this time.

The restoration works of the cathedral were performed under the supervision of Project Manager of SIA Skonto Būve Modris Seļakovs. The restoration and gilding works of the church were performed thanks to long-term donations of Guntis Rāvis and other entrepreneurs.

Work, resources and knowledge contributed by the company and Guntis Rāvis in person have made it possible for one of the most beautiful and majestic buildings built in the Neo-Byzantine style to be revived in Riga's historical centre.