The construction of the largest ongoing stock-office complex in Vilnius “Urban HUB” has officially commenced with the unveiling of a unique stone
SBA Urban has officially launched a 22,000 sqm retail, office and warehouse campus stock-office development in Vilnius district, Avižieniai. Urban Hub Vilnius is the largest project under construction in Vilnius city and district. It is expected to be completed in summer next year. The construction start is marked by the discovery of a unique stone found at the construction site, which drifted to Lithuania with the glaciers 25,000 years ago. This rare mineral stone will be included in Lithuania’s stone register.
Dozens of businesses
“We are entering the still emerging market of retail and logistics towns in Lithuania with the huge Urban HUB project, which has the size of 3 football fields. We are investing EUR 30 million in a modern facility of exceptional architecture and surrounding infrastructure to make Urban HUB in Vilnius District a key catalyst for synergies between emerging businesses. Over 30 businesses will create jobs here. The project’s cornerstone, made of many different minerals and materials found on the construction site, will become a symbol of the synergy and resilience of businesses,” says Giedrius Muliuolis, CEO of Urban HUB, the SBA company developing the project.
According to him, despite the global economic slowdown that also affects the Lithuanian market, the strategic location of the project and the flexibility of its spaces determine its demand. Almost a third of the area in “Urban HUB” is already reserved. Stock-office in the city plans to attract various businesses – from sports clubs to stores and service centres catering to everyday needs.
“I am glad that the population in the Vilnius district is growing rapidly, and residential neighbourhoods are expanding. At the same time, we understand people’s desire to access various services closer to their homes. Therefore, we hope the ‘Urban HUB’ project will meet this need successfully. Such an opportunity not only for businesses in the region and the city to establish themselves in new, modern premises, but also for residents to enjoy sports, cafes, and shopping services. Furthermore, I thank the project development team for creating a new standard that harmoniously engages with the Avižieniai community and collaboratively addresses emerging issues,” says Robert Duchnevič, the Mayor of Vilnius District.
The completion of facade works – this winter
The general contractor for the “Urban HUB” project in Vilnius, the sustainable urban development and construction company “YIT Lietuva,” is determined to complete the facades and roof before winter so that work can transition to the interior of the building during the cold season.
Construction will be carried out efficiently and using the most modern solutions. The company is already implementing them in the Kaunas region by building an analogue of the “Urban HUB,” which will become the largest project of its kind in the entire Baltic region.
“Implementing these stock-office towns is truly ambitious, bringing a new sustainable, modern, and innovative vision for business development to Lithuania. We are proud to have been entrusted with the expansion of ‘Urban HUB’ in Vilnius and Kaunas. Therefore, we will harness all available competencies, experience, and innovations to fulfill project visions, opening modern and environmentally friendly spaces for the country’s business. We hope they will further promote growth, nurture talent, and implement the best ideas”, emphasises Kęstutis Vanagas, the company’s CEO, “YIT Lietuva.”
“Urban HUB” Vilnius construction has assembled 250 reinforced concrete columns, used over 500 blocks for pavements, and installed 600 tons of steel beams and engineering networks.
Unique stone included in the registry
The main emphasis was placed on a rare find at the ceremony. A multi-layered stone called breccia, discovered during the construction of columns, will mark the beginning of the project.
“In this location, the stone found is remarkable because its constituent parts underwent the primary fragmentation of rocks and high-temperature annealing and consolidation. This glacial erratic was most likely formed during the last ice age, approximately 20-25 thousand years ago. Subjected to powerful natural forces, it became even stronger, making it a reliable cornerstone for the ‘Urban HUB’ project,” says geologist Dr. Jonas Satkūnas, recounting the stone’s history.
He states quartz (mountain crystal) and plagioclase crystals are visible in the metamorphic breccia, with pyrite and zircon crystals and even semi-precious garnet “eyes”. Likely, gold nuggets can also be found in the quartz veins. It reached Vilnius after covering a distance of about 1000 km, most likely from Western Finland. The stone, characterised by its mosaic-like structure and composed of sharp-edged fragments, has been baptised as the “Urban HUB Cornerstone.” This stone is of modest height, about 1.6 meters, and weighs approximately 6-7 tons, and it will be included in Lithuania’s collection of erratic boulders.
“SBA Urban” is developing Urban HUB in Kaunas, near the Vilnius-Klaipėda highway. Over several stages, an investment of 100 million euros is planned for this project, aiming to develop 70,000 square meters of space. In the first phase, expected to be completed in the first half of next year, there are plans to offer 22,000 square meters of space for tenants in four buildings.