Changing old clothes: St. Benedictine Sisters Monastery will become an even brighter accent of Kaunas

The changes in Kaunas Old Town have reached an unprecedented scale. The works covered not only Vilnius Street and the roundabout next to the Kaunas Castle but also some buildings which are significant for the city. At the moment, The Ensemble of Kaunas St. Nicholas Church and Benedictine Monastery is being renovated. Authentic colors will soon be restored on the facade of the Ensemble‘s rectory. It is planned that Kaunas residents and guests will be able to admire the renovated building at the end of this year.

One of the oldest churches in Kaunas

“We have something to be proud of – Kaunas used to be one of the most prosperous points of trade transit in the Middle Ages. Historians have a version that it was the first church in Kaunas, which was build  in the 15th century and received the patron saint of merchants. The same church is still standing here today and has a name of the Saint Nicholas. It was build for German merchants coming to unbaptized Lithuania.” Said Saulius Rimas, Head of the Cultural Heritage Department of Kaunas City Municipality.

According to him, Kaunas Sisters Benedictine Monastery, located on Gertrūdos, P. Eimučio and Šauklių streets, deserves the same attention as the mature Baroque remark – Pažaislis church and monastery complex. Located in the Old Town, the ensemble – the rectory, one of the oldest Gothic churches in the city, a monastery, a gallery, auxiliary buildings (former ice cream parlor) – is a cultural monument and a state –protected object.

Here you can see the 17th century painting of the Virgin Mary the Queen of the Rosary and the painting of the “South” of Jesus. There are also some impressive stained glass windows (designed by Liudas Truikis and Vytautas Bičiūnas) which are decorating St. Mikalojus Church. Other especially valuable architectural objects are the church’s mesh and star interior vaults together with the extraordinary octagonal tower.

A solid investment in the heritage of Kaunas

“Neat streets, cozy parks and other spaces are basic hygiene, but it is very important that the city is decorated with beautiful buildings. There are really many of them in Kaunas, so it is important to revive old, dilapidated facades. We already have great examples of how the city’s contribution brings to life beautiful heritage buildings and other objects. Some of them are an important part of Kaunas history. I believe that the city’s work and efforts will not go to waste and Kaunas, which has the European Heritage Label, will gain global recognition from UNESCO next year.” Said Kaunas Mayor Visvaldas Matijošaitis.

A part of complex change

The renovation of the St. Mikalojus Church and the Benedictine monastery ensemble is only a part of the works taking place in the historical territory of Kaunas. The aim is to create even more attractive and comfortable spaces for residents and city guests.

The overhaul of Vilnius Street, which started this week, will become a significant challenge for the whole city, but next summer, parents with wheelchairs and people with reduced mobility will be able to enjoy one of the oldest streets in the city. The entire section will be arranged – from Kaunas City Hall to Laisvės Alley. The smoothed stones of the existing pavement will return to their places.

Obvious changes are already visible in one of the busiest transport hubs in Kaunas. The roundabout next to the Kaunas Castle, its access and P. Vileišis bridge are under renovation. Most of the heat and sewage networks have already been built here, and the support of the catenary network has been renewed. The first layers of asphalt concrete pavement were laid at the roundabout. The contractors plan to complete this reconstruction this year, by the Autumn.

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