150 years ago

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150 YEARS AGO THEWALLED BARCELONA

I n1818,Bar c el onahad83, 000i nhabi t ant s . I n1850,amer e32y ear sl at er ,t hatnumber hadgr ownt o187, 000.Thear eac ov er ed byt hec i t y ,howev er ,r emai nedunc hanged. Thewal l ss ur r oundi ngt heur bannuc l eus r ender edex pans i oni mpos s i bl e.Thec i t y neededt ogr ow,butc oul donl ydos oi n hei ghtbyaddi ngs t or ey st ot hebui l di ngs t hatal r eadyex i s t edandi nv ent i ngnew s pac es ,s uc hasar c hest hatmadei t pos s i bl et opar t i al l yc ov ert hes t r eet s .I nt he Bar c el onaoft hos eday s ,wi t hi t snar r ow al l ey sandl aby r i nt hi nel ay out ,t her ewasa nec es s i t yf ors pac eandi nf r as t r uc t ur e. Bui l di ngshadnov ent i l at i on.Hy gi eni c c ondi t i onswer edr eadf ul .Li f eex pec t anc y was36y ear samongpr i v i l egedc l as s esand 23y ear sf ort hemor ehumbl ec l as s es .The c i t ywass uf f oc at i ng.Par adox i c al l y ,i twas s ur r oundedbyampl es pac esof uni nhabi t edl and.Theobs es s i onwi t hi t s def enc ehadc aus edapr ohi bi t i onon bui l di ngwi t hi nt hedi s t anc eofac anons hot . I n1841,t heCi t yHal l hel dac ompet i t i oni n whi c hi tc al l edf ori deasont headv ant ages t hatwoul dbebr oughtaboutbydemol i s hi ng t hec i t ywal l s .Thewor kt hatwonwast hatof t hephy s i c i anandhy gi eni s tPer eFi l i p Monl au,whi c hwast i t l ed“ Downwi t ht he wal l s ! ! ! � ,ac r ys ummoni ngt hes pi r i tt hat woul ddomi nat et heage.Thats amey ear , t het hi nk erandt heol ogi s tJ aumeBal mes publ i s hedas er i esofar t i c l esex pl ai ni ngt he adv ant agesofac i t ywi t houtt hec ons t r ai nt s ofar t i f i c i al boundar i es .I twasnol ongeronl y t hemos tpr ogr es s i v ev oi c eswhower e s uppor t i ngt hi sdemand.Four t eeny ear s l at er ,i n1854,t hel ongc ampai gnbec ame f r ui t f ul :aRoy al Or derf r om t heGov er nment ofMadr i daut hor i s edwhatwasal r eadya mat t eroff ac t :c ommenc ewi t ht he demol i t i onoft hewal l s .


150 YEARS AGO THERACEFOR EXPANSI ON

Att heendof1858,t heMi ni st erofWar madet hedeci si ont ost opconsi der i ngBar cel onaasbei ngaf or t i f i edt own.Def ence wasnol ongerapr i or i t yanddeci si onmaki ngcompet enceovert heci t ywast r ansf er r edt ot heMi ni st r yofPubl i cWor ks.Ci t y Hal li nt er pr et edt hi schanget obet hegr een l i ghtf orbui l di ngt hedi st r i ctEi x ampl e( a Cat al oni ant er m meani ng“ ex pansi on” )and on12Febr uar y1859aconsul t antcommi ssi onconvenedwi t ht heul t i mat eobj ect i veof t ur ni ngt hepr oj ecti nt oapubl i ccompet i t i on. Onl yt hr eedaysl at er ,t heMi ni st erofPubl i c Wor kst askedI l def onsCer dàwi t ht her eal i sat i onoft hePl anf orRef or m andDevel opmenti nBar cel ona.Twomont hsl at er , however ,Ci t yHal lpubl i shedcompet i t i on gui del i nesf orpl anni ngt hez one’ sur bani sat i onandsett he31stofJ ul yast hef i nal dat e.Thet woi nst i t ut i onshadl aunchedt hei r owni ni t i at i vesandnei t herwaswi l l i ngt o cedet ot heot her .Thi sl aunchedacompl ex pr ocesswhosei nf l uent i alf act or si ncl uded t hei mpor t anteconomi ci nt er est soft hose owni ngl andar oundt heci t y . On7J ul y1859,150year sago,t heMi ni st r y publ i shedaRoyalOr derappr ovi ngt hePl an f orRef or m andDevel opmenti nBar cel ona t ober eal i sedbyI l def onsCer dà.TheCat al oni anengi neerhadspentyear sst udyi ng t hel i vi ngcondi t i onsoft heci t y’ si nhabi t ant s andhadbeenchar gedwi t ht het askof dr awi ngat opogr aphi calpl anofBar cel ona’ s sur r oundi ngar easasear l yas1854.Ci t y Hal l ,however ,decl ar edt hear chi t ectAnt oni Rovi r ai Tr i asast hewi nneroft hepubl i shed pr oj ectcompet i t i onon10Oct ober1859.I n t het womont hst of ol l ow,t heCi t yCounci l appl i edpr essur et ot heef f ectt hatRovi r aI i as’ pl anwoul dr epl aceCer dà’ s.On31 Tr May1860,however ,t heMi ni st r yr esol ved t hequest i onvi aRoyalDecr ee,whi chgave ul t i mat epr oj ectappr ovalt ot heengi neer bor ni nCent el l es.

Rovi r ai Tr i as’ pr oj ectwast hewi nneroft heCi t yHal l pr oj ect s compet i t i on.

Sol eri Gl r i as’ pr oj ectf i r stment i onoft heCi t yHal l pr oj ect s compt et i t i on.

Font ser éi Mest r es,t hi r dpl aceoft heCi t yHal l pr oj ect s compet i t i on.

Cer dàspr oj ect .© Real Academi adeBel l asAr t esdeSan Fer nandodeMadr i d.


150 YEARS AGO THECERDÀ PLAN

ThePl anf orRef or m andDev el opmenti n Bar c el onai sc ons i der edt obeapi oneer pr oj ec ti nt heev ol ut i onofmoder n ur bani s m.Cer dàas pi r edt oc r eat eac i t y whi c h,des pi t ehav i ngs nat c hedupr ur al l and,woul dbear t i c ul at edwi t hwi des t r eet s andgr eens pac es .Theengi neerdes i gned agr i dpl aner ul edbyt hes t r i c tgeomet r yof par al l el andper pendi c ul ars t r eet s ,i nt er r upt edonl ybyt hel ar geav enuespas s i ng t hr ought hear eadi agonal l y .Theoc t agonal bl oc k si nc or por at i ngc hamf er edc or ner st o f ac i l i t at et r af f i cf l ows t oodoutamongt he mai nnov el t i es . TheCer dàPl anof1859ac c ount edf ora s t r eetwi dt hof20met r esandwasgoi ngt o bui l dont wos i desofeac hbl oc konl y , l eav i ngani nt er i orgr eenz oneopenf or publ i cus e.Themax i mum hei ghtofa bui l di ngwast obe16met r es ,t heequi v al entofaf our s t or eybui l di ng.Thepl an pr ov i dedf oramar k etev er y900met r es ,a par kev er y1, 500,t hr eehos pi t al s ,as l aught er hous e,ac emet er y ,awoodand31 c hur c hes .Lar gei ndus t r ywoul dbel oc at ed nex tt ot het wor i v er s ,wi t hs mal l and medi um s i z edbus i nes sdi s t r i but edt hr oughoutt hec i t y .Wi t hr egar dt oi nf r as t r uc t ur e, t heengi neerdes i gnedas y s t em f orr ec ol l ec t i ngwat erandi nt r oduc edr ai l andr oad t r ans por t at i on.Whatc ont i nuest os ur pr i s e ust odayi sCer dà’ sc apac i t yt opr edi c tt he pr ot agoni s t i cr ol ewhi c hpubl i ct r ans por t woul dpl ayi nt hec i t y ,af ac t ort hatper mi t t ed Bar c el onat oadoptt hepr of oundc hanges br oughtaboutbyt i me,asi fhehadac t ual l y ex pec t edt hem 150y ear sago.


150 YEARS AGO THEBI RTHOF THEEI XAMPLE

On4Sept ember1860,j us taf ewmont hs af t err ec ei v i ngf i nal appr ov al f ort hepr oj ec t , QueenI s abel I I l ai dt hef i r s ts t oneof Ei x ampl ewher ePl aç adeCat al uny ai s c ur r ent l yl oc at ed.Howev er ,i twoul ds t i l l t ak eaf ewy ear sf ort hec i t y ’ sex pans i on out s i det hewal l st obec omear eal i t y .The l ac kofi nf r as t r uc t ur eandt hedi s t anc ef r om t heur bannuc l eusmadet hear eaunat t r ac t i v et oi nv es t or s .I n1863,Cer dàhi ms el f i nt r oduc edamodi f i c at i ont ot hepr oj ec tt hat i nc r eas edt hebui l dabl el andoneac hbl oc k . Thei ni t i al pl an’ sbl oc k swi t hbui l di ngon onl yt wos i desgav ewayt ot hos ewi t hmor e s pac ef orbui l di ng. Li t t l ebyl i t t l e,Ei x ampl e’ sf i r s ti nhabi t ant s wer ej oi nedbyot her si nac ons t antt r i c k l e. As oc al l edGol dFev erar os ebyt he1870s . I nv es t or sr ec ogni s edt hez one’ sur bani s at i onasanex c el l entbus i nes soppor t uni t y . Thos ewhohadamas s edweal t hi nt he Amer i c asr et ur nedwi t hf r es hi nv es t ment c api t al .Pr i v i l egedf ami l i esf oundt hemos t adequat el oc at i onf orbui l di ngt hei rr es i denc est obeont her i ghts i deofEi x ampl e. Cer dà’ spr oj ec twasf i nal l yc ons ent ed, des pi t ec ons t r uc t i onf ev erc ont r i but i ngt oa pr ogr es s i v er educ t i oni ngr eens pac esand f ac i l i t i es .I nt heend,al l f ours i desofabl oc k wer ebui l tupon,andt hehei ghtandt he s ur f ac ear eaoft hebui l di ngswasal s o i nc r eas ed. TheUni v er s al Ex pos i t i onof1888al l owed f orr enov at i oni nc er t ai nar easaswel l asf or t hec r eat i onofpubl i cs er v i c es .Att heend oft he19t hCent ur y ,El Ei x ampl ehadgr own s uc ht hatBar c el onai nt egr at edt hemuni c i pal i t i esofSant s ,LesCor t s ,SantGer v as i , Gr ac i a,SantAndr euandSantMar t íi n 1897.


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