Other Objects of City Environment
Dismantling of the fortifications in the middle of the 19th century, rapid development of the city and growth of the population determined changes also in building construction. Apart from representative buildings and prestigious tenement houses, construction of public buildings, tenement houses for middle class and working districts developed. The development of the city environment at the beginning of the 20th century was marked by rationalism, particularly obviously that was expressed in the architecture of cultural and educational institutions. Schools, which were built by the design of R. Schmeling in Riga at the beginning of the 20th century, are notable for clearly elaborated construction programme and efficient architectural spatial solution. The same may be said about other buildings, which were designed by R. Schmeling at that time – the complex of the 2nd City Hospital built in 1908-1912 (nowadays P. Stradiņa Clinical Hospital) and the building of Āgenskalna Market (1914). The designs of these buildings are their distinctive features, where the red front brick alternates with areas of light stucco.
Special attention in Riga has always been devoted to trade and the buildings linked with it. The first marketplace in Riga was the area near Skārņu Street, because at end of marketplaces of feudal cities usually there was the church standing, built and maintained by the residents of the city (in Riga –St. Peter’s Church).
The middle of the present Skārņu Street up to St. George’s Cathedral was occupied by a row of butcher's shops, which, apparently, were a part of the old market (for the first time they were mentioned in 1295). In the nearby area (now on the corner of Lielā Monētu and Mazā Monētu Streets) there used to be a mint, bearing evidence of once active trade there. Later, due to the expansion of the marketplace, it moved to the Town Hall Square where it stayed up to the beginning of the 20th century, when the Riga Central Market, the most modern market at that time, was constructed. In its turn, the area between Elizabetes, Dzirnavu and Marijas Streets bears testimony of the trade complex origins in Riga, the so-called Berga Bazar.