After extensive repair works, on March 20th the doors opened the renewed premises of the Bioeconomy and Sustainable Resource Management Center and the group of rooms of south-eastern wing of the castle. Historically, these rooms in the Jelgava Castle were Silver hall, Gold hall and Duke's bedroom, but after the renovation they are adapted to promote scientific functions and international cooperation.
"The goal of LLU is to become the leading university of sciences and technologies in the Baltic Sea Region with a specialization in the sustainable use of natural resources. The Center of the Bioeconomy and Sustainable Resource Management and castle’s renovation is only one of the steps in several activities that will be implemented in the LLU in future ", said Irina Pilvere, Rector of the Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies.
The center will work as initiator for interdisciplinary researches, will promote the recognition of interdisciplinary researches and their outcomes on national and international level. It is anticipated that the center will advance scientific institutes’ recognizability on international scientific level and add value to international cooperation.
At the end of the last year, the Cabinet of Ministers approved the Latvian Bioeconomy Strategy 2030, which stated that the LLU is the leading institution of higher education and research in the field of bio-economy in Latvia. That means, university should invest in the development of education quality and scientific capacity and increase its visibility and competitiveness at European level, especially in the Baltic and Scandinavian countries.
Now researchers at LLU are conducting studies in various sectors of bioeconomy and are looking for healthier eating possibilities, "greener" types of moving, "more friendly" technical solutions and more efficient production. The new Center will serve as a meeting point for scientists. For example, LLU IT scientists who work on modern beekeeping solutions, could virtually meet their colleagues in Germany and Indonesia, or our food technologists studying the use of earthworms, could develop cooperation with any of the the world's leading food science institutes," Center’s work characterize Vice Rector of Science Arnis Mugurevičs.
The Center now has renewed rooms and upgraded equipment that will enhance sound and video possibilities. It is already available for conferences and seminars, including the e-conferences with university international partners. The Director of the LLU Andrejs Garančs said that, energy efficiency improvement measures in Jelgava Castle also took place, windows were replaced and new ventilation system was installed. It is a unique and complicated solution, which creates an outstanding results and benefits.
"This year, June 20, we will celebrate the 280th anniversary of Jelgava Palace. There will be held a conference, devoted to the history of the castle. Also, in the Jelgava castle, which is Baroque architectural monument, will be performed a Baroque music concert. The castle will be open to anyone who is interested, "says Ginta Linīte, Head of the Museum of LLU.
The Center's development and renovation of premises was implemented within the framework of the project of the European Union. Accordingly, until 2021 LLU will invest 16 721 153 EUR in the development of its infrastructure. This is stipulated in an agreement between the LLU and the Agency of the Central Financial Treaties.
The project is implemented by the LLU together with the partners - the Institute of Horticulture and the Institute of Agricultural resources and Economics.
The installation of the ventilation system and replacement of windows was carried out within the framework of the project "Ensuring energy efficiency of Jelgava Castle" (No. EKII - 1/1) financed by the Emission Trading Scheme. The total cost of the project is EUR 6 701 654, 49, the cofinancing of the Emission Trading Scheme is EUR 4 000 000, 00.