Once home to a famous noble family, then a military hospital during the Soviet era and, finally, a hospital for the elderly, Sapieha palace park waited patiently for its next name and mission. It was in 2016 that Vilnius Tech Park opened to the public.
Today, Vilnius Tech Park is the largest and most integrated ICT hub in the Nordics and Baltics. With an eight-hectare site, providing over 9,000 m2 of office space and currently hosting a community of more than 65 innovative companies, it has easily become a magnet for foreign technology and talent.
The park has put the city on the global start-up map, but more importantly, the dynamic centre connecting technology, culture and creative industries has become a community asset, enabling residents to connect with their heritage and new technology. Chief Specialist of the city of Vilnius, Ausra Siciuniene explains: “People living near the Vilnius Tech Park now see it as a nice environment where they like to have their own community activities – there are so many things happening there now that it has its own momentum and start-ups really want to be part of it all.”
The community focus embedded into Vilnius Tech Park and its start-ups has led to many novel initiatives. Miesto Laboratorijos, for example, runs a citizens’ laboratory for eco-gardening, inviting residents to learn about innovative ideas for sustainable living and consumption.