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Faculdade de Arquitectura da Universidade Técnica de Lisboa

Ph.D. Dissertation

Documento provisório In Partial Satisfaction of the Requirements


Pedro Carlos Bobone Ressano Garcia

Supervisor: Amâncio D’Alpoim Miranda Guedes Second Supervisor: Hugo Hinsley

February 2005

To my wife Carolina an to our children,


Pedro Carlos Bobone Ressano Garcia PhD: Urban Design Supervisor: Amâncio D’Alpoim Miranda Guedes Second Supervisor: Hugo Hinsley

Abstract The relations between the Industrial Port of Lisbon and the city center of Lisbon are the object of study of this work. the port activity changes and new possibilities emerge for the use of the landfill. The work will focus on the opportunities that rethinking this relationship may offer for relating the city back to the river. Since previous propositions based on urban design, urban planning and architecture projects have not been implemented, Port and City remain separated by a barrier built for the modern means of transportation. The research involves historic and geographic archival material, a study on current debates in Lisbon and two comparative case studies to raise alternative possibilities, together with a range of other smaller examples. One of our purposes is to introduce a methodology to approach the existing situation between city and port. The examples we chose form a parallel to the object of study, include several conceptual proposals of urban design and architecture are outlined for specific sites of the Lisbon’s port area to illustrate the potential of ideas explored. The work investigates the importance of public space for urban regeneration and explores the collaboration necessary to conceptually and institutionally lead to a successful transformation in a slow long-term process involving a vast range of participants. Key words: urban waterfront / port activities / city-port relation / cut-off effect / public access / morphology

Título: O DISCURSO DA ARQUITECTURA NO DESENHO URBANO Subtítulo: A REGENERAÇÃO DA FRENTE PORTUÁRIA DE LISBOA O PORTO INDUSTRIAL E A CIDADE Pedro Carlos Bobone Ressano Garcia Doutoramento em: ramo – Planeamento Urbanístico, disciplina – Desenho Urbano Orientador: Amâncio D’Alpoim Miranda Guedes Co-orientador: Hugo Hinsley RESUMO

As relações entre o porto industrial e a cidade histórica adjacente são o objecto de estudo deste trabalho. A actividade portuária altera-se e surgem novas possibilidades de uso nos aterros portuários. O trabalho centra-se sobre as oportunidades que o repensar desta relação pode oferecer no restabelecimento da ligação da cidade ao rio. As propostas anteriores baseadas em desenho urbano, planeamento urbanístico e projectos de arquitectura não foram implementadas, Porto e Cidade permanecem separados pela barreira criada pelos meios de transporte modernos.

A pesquisa inclui material de arquivo histórico e geográfico, um estudo sobre o debate actual em Lisboa e dois casos de estudo comparados para delinear possíveis alternativas, em conjunto com outros exemplos de menor dimensão.

Um dos objectivos é apresentar uma metodologia para abordar a situação existente entre cidade e porto. Os exemplos escolhidos estabelecem um paralelo com o objecto de estudo incluindo algumas propostas conceptuais de desenho urbano e arquitectura esboçadas para lugares específicos da frente portuária, para ilustrar o potencial das ideias exploradas. O trabalho investiga a importância que o espaço público tem na regeneração urbana e explora os tipos de colaboração necessária ao nível conceptual e institucional que conduzam ao sucesso da transformação num processo a longo prazo que envolve um número alargado de participantes.

Palavras chave: aterro do porto industrial / actividade portuária / relação cidade-porto / efeito corte / espaço público / morfologia





The object of study


The critical argument


Research Work Structure


The problem presented by the object of study


Relations between the Port Authority and the Municipality of Lisbon


Predictability by comparison - case studies


Smaller Case studies – compare to conceive changes


Chapter 1 – Contemporary Debate

Introducing who contributes for the debate


Creative uses of the port area


Cultural heritage – engine of the city identity?


Section I Object of Study

Chapter 2 – Lisbon’s port area

Rethinking waterfront cities: issues Lisbon should consider


Macro Scale Does Lisbon need a container terminal?


Port mutations


Hinterland connections


From transhipment to containerization


Urban Scale Pozor – Lisbon waterfront development plan


A vanishing port


The post-Pozor experience


Influence of administrative powers


Detail Scale City expansion


The image


Beyond the image


City port relation


Chapter 3 – Estuary of river Tagus and the industrial port

Landfill is artificial by nature


Early Landfill


Conflict of Interests


Organic Growth


Dynamic balance between water and land


The Dream of Modernity


The incomplete Industrial Port


Chapter 4 – Projects and influences in the Lisbon waterfront

Transition models


Modern means of transportation


The monumental image


The writer’s perception


Large squares at the waterfront


Last projects


Chapter 5 – Lisbon Expo’98 Public Spaces



Access to the waterfront


Financing and social integration


The role of public spaces


Cultural significance



Chapter 6 –Urban Case Studies

Relocation of port facilities


San Francisco Jurisdiction


The barrier


Decline of the port and alternative plans


Recent strategies


Ferry Building


Barcelona Public spaces renovation at the waterfront


Repopulation policy


Public space as cultural reference, Barcelona vs Lisbon


Chapter 7 – Case studies of smaller dimension

Projects of urban-port regeneration


Non-built projects Toyo Ito – Competition for Antwerp


Manuel Vicente – Competition for the Expo’98


Foreign Office Architects – Cruise terminal competition for Tenerife


Zaha Hadid – Habitable bridge over river Thames in London


Melnikov – Garage project over river Seine in Paris


Built projects Yokohama


Kishamichi promenade


Sidney, Promenart program


Turpin & Crawford


Robin Backen


Oakland – Artship Foundation


From vessel to building


Bristol – SS Great Britain


Progressive heritage



General considerations


According to the order of the structure


Complexity and Flexibility


Final considerations – how to conceive change


List of illustrations





I do not know where to start, since this work is a result of various contributions to whom I am so thankful. As I look at the finish work I realize it would not have been possible to make it without the generosity and support of all. This work belongs to all of them. I must start from the beginning when Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia gave me a four year grant that allowed this study to be developed. FCT also sponsored field trips, presentations at international conferences and the supervision in London at the Architectural Association.

Pancho Guedes gave the first kick, and then contaminated me with his enthusiasm throughout the process. Whenever I felt frustrated, he expressed a deep interest and underlined how the work would be relevant. He is the great mentor. Hugo Hinsley gave me deadlines forced me to define and structure my work, and imposed systematic presentations offering me the opportunity to discuss my work with other PhD students and faculty. Without him this work would have been something else.

Most of the research was supported by the generosity of other architects colleagues and researchers that kindly offered unpublished work, and original material, that otherwise I could not access. I shall thank to Richard W. Berman of the University of Pennsylvania, Catherine De Lorenzo of University of New South Wales ,Sidney, Slobodan Dai Paich from the Artship, Karen Fiene at the Waterfront Centre, Tom Fisher at the University of Minneapolis, F. João Guimarães at the University of California, Berkeley, Miguel Correia with the Pozor plan, Luís Viana Batista from Parque Expo, Margarida Bobone from Gabinete de Estudos Olissiponenses, Nicola Kirham from Saint Martin School, Antoni Remesar from University of Barcelona. The work of translations was supported by Armanda Rodrigues who gave me a great support beyond her duty, continuously producing critical comments and been always available. Her contribution was rigorous and persistent which is fundamental in a work of this kind. Professors João Cabral, Mário Pedro Rodrigues, Carlos Dias Coelho, Rui Barreiros Duarte and Jorge Gaspar for reading and presenting critical comments. I Should mention those who gave tips and original material: Raul Hestnes Ferreira, Duarte Cabral de Melo, Gonçalo Ribeiro Teles, Manuel Vicente e Alcino Soutinho. To all I am so thankful.



1. Site plan of the city of Lisbon and the waterfront, in red the area of the industrial port.


The object of study


The critical argument


Research Work Structure


The problem presented by the object of study


Relations between the Port Authority and the Municipality of Lisbon


Predictability by comparison - case studies


Smaller Case studies – compare to conceive changes




The object of study The primary aim of this work is to evaluate models of possible integration of areas of the port in the city of Lisbon. The theme of waterfront development in an urban context is approached, with special interest at the spatial and cultural aspects of the transformation. However waterfronts urban development is a phenomenon with a vast spectrum of social, political, economic and urban implications that can be studied from the point of view of a variety of disciplines.

The intention of this study it is not to approach the ‘waterfronts’ theme in the larger sense but instead focus on one of its dimensions: the ‘slice’ where the historic city meets the port area. This study attempts to shed light on the particular case of Lisbon and approaches it from the architect’s point of view, that is to say from the spatial and formal perspectives of future relations between city and port.

The intention of this research is not to produce a master plan, or to answer the main questions but to analyse solutions. The thesis has the intention of clarifying the relations between different players but more import it shows the great value that the port will have in the future of structuring the city in re establishing the relation with the river.

The work presents a revision of debates about city port relations, refers to the literature of the subject and establish a clear argument about why this relationship must be spatially and organisationally restated. We will not exclusively describe models of success in waterfront development, since each case is different but instead, review processes of transformation. Processes in which port and city have successfully develop means of negotiation to reach solutions and improve mutually.

The case studies presented have been carefully selected, not to copy them but to learn from them. The examples discussed are not explicit models with ready made solution, but ideas and concepts to be discussed as they reflect on how space on the waterfront can be revitalized, and how the city can benefit from them. Transformation is not a linear process, since it is influenced by various and unpredictable dynamics, which does not allow the elaboration of absolute theories. The thesis intends to be a contribute, generating possible cross references for a deeper and extended debate.


The critical argument

The main argument of this work is the growing cultural influence and potential of waterfront redevelopments. Several authors, such as Meyer (1999), Boeri (2000), Breen and Rigby (1996), Remesar (2001) and Borruey (2001) refer to the importance of the cultural factor in the process of the urban waterfronts transformation. In general, the waterfronts in the urban context are constructed sites that transform the edge of the city, but in most cases the city had previous relations with the water. Those relations remain engraved in the urban fabric and are embedded in the city as memories. The research to support the main argument includes both the site of the port area (the industrial landfill) and the cultural imprints left by the port-city relations influence. In attempt to define culture – either in the broad and local sense or the industrial port legacy – the discussion touches a number of issues related to other waterfront developments. The port area of Lisbon stands on industrial landfill and has inherent physical space of a modern frontier between city and river. The culture of the port city is rooted in the site, and it is possible to define some of the characteristics of the cultural elements through the investigation of the historic and geographic background of the port area which is the object of the this study. The underlying argument of the present research is based on the premises listed below.

1. Port activity reconfigures the port and the industrial landfill next to city centres becomes available.

2. Future strategies should be produce by city and port together thus re-establishing the city to the water.

3. The cultural significance and the importance of public spaces at the waterfront in the process of transformation.

4. Projects that change the morphology are an effective instrument to link city and the artificial land of the port

5. Discussion of new infrastructures are made upon specific projects rather than general urban planning, and include artists and scientists participation. 13

1. Port activity reconfigures the port and the industrial landfill next to city centres becomes available.

The problem existing between city and ports covers complex matters related to urban planning, urban design and architecture. There is a common tendency to separate them and address them independently, however the discussion necessarily includes three different scales. The analysis of the object of study includes the interconnection of these scales, and structures the discussion in a large, an intermediate and a detailed frame.

The non-implementation of the project for container terminals at Trafaria in the 1980s and 90s severely interrupted the growth of the port of Lisbon activity. This has consequences at the scale of strategic planning and deals with geographic issues that have several influences in the territory. The urban problems increase in a city operating a container terminal located at its central area, and the value of land raises the interest offered by the possibility for waterfront development.

At the present, the interdependence of architecture, urban scale design and planning is extremely important for most cities. It seems clear that planning is mainly political and abstract; urban scale design stimulates the collective imagery, and architecture is the individual expression that invents the soul of the city (Guedes, 2000), all scales are inevitably engaged with property development in spite of alone none could work as the only ‘maker’ of the city. Cities result from different wills and circumstances; nevertheless, the architects produce the drawing, i. e., the seeds that become the shape of things. In recent years, these disciplines have been separated as if they belonged to different realities. During the creation of the Industrial Port, the city and the port were legally separated. The dialogue between them has been quite reduced. They were independent from each other, and a special jurisdiction was regulated for the Port Authority. City and port grew differently, both spatially and culturally. The separation between city and port has produced urban ruptures, increasing a lack of dialogue between the several municipalities and the Port Authority, and a lack of knowledge of the port activity and impact at social and economic level.


2. Five periods of time at the waterfront, Wilson (2000).


2. Future strategies should be produce by city and port together thus re-establishing the city to the water.

In Lisbon one of the advantages of the Port Authority’s autonomy is that it can orient and control the whole process of urban development from planning to urban scale design, and even to the scale of the project of architecture by means of commissioning a specific architect and then coordinating his or her project. In short, the APL can work simultaneously with all the scales of the project which is an advantage but previous plans did not relate the port area with the city next to it which was a disadvantage.

The plan at intervention units 2, 3 and 4 was oriented towards construction of great density. It proposed a ‘standard’ urban design for the waterfront, one that repeated previously applied solutions. It was based on a ‘waterfront model’ that succeed in attracting developers and that benefited from short term financial investments. One of the central arguments of this work is that any future transformation at the waterfront should necessarily establish a partnership between Port Authority, Municipality and other agents involved from private and public sectors in order to generate a coherent strategy for the city.

The relations between city and port are in the centre of the contemporary debate. Based on more successful cases of waterfront renovation, one of the key arguments of this work is that a new plan should not be centered in the port area, but instead it should focus on the city and the reestablishment of the relation to the river. In fact waterfront redevelopment strategies have explored alternatives ways of thinking. The industrial port is a relatively recent territory artificially created, and the city has an opportunity to reestablish a lost link with the river precisely through the port area (see plate 2), and the Municipality searches for the citizens improvement of quality of life.

A new frame of thinking has emerged as can be seen in the case studies. Better solutions are coming from this theoretic shift and have consequences at the level of the ‘decision maker’s’. There is not a new model of town management or of city planning; but instead there are creative initiatives that are different in each of the analyzed case studies – each of them had specific characteristics and worked from their own preexisting conditions. 16

3. The cultural significance and the importance of public spaces at the waterfront in the process of transformation.

In current discussions most authors, such as Berman (2001), Boeri (2000), Busquets (1999), de Lorenzo (2001), Gastil (2002), Gehl and Gemzoe (2000), Rodrigues (1999), Remesar (2001) and Soutinho(1999) defend the importance of public space, at the waterfront, as the central and structuring element for future developments. Another central argument is the cultural importance of these public spaces for three main reasons. Firstly, the city grew from the waterfront, the river allowed the birth of the settlement, therefore the site has a symbolic quality. Secondly, the port area has been the point of departure to the ocean routes that linked all the world beyond, as well as the gateway to enter and exit the city – ‘porto e porta’. For a long time it was the access of the local people to communities all over the globe, with an intensive cultural interchange that still takes place. Thirdly, it is the physical end of the land and beginning of the water: a line of frontier between two worlds – one we know, and the other we know little of, one we understand and control and the other that is beyond our control.

The main purpose of this research is to critically review the present situation of the port area of Lisbon; to explore the argument that renovation should be based on the importance of public space and collective memory; and, as a hypothesis, to test whether waterfront renovation is able to create public spaces that have an artistic quality and express the cultural significance of the site to the community. A second hypothesis is that to improve the relation between city and port, the cultural landscape that has always relate to the water should be used in a creative way to embrace the water. To test such a hypothesis this research will investigate the creation of the site and the industrial landfill. The availability of that area it is an unique opportunity for cities to redefine their physical relation with the water. The observation of the community’s relation with the public spaces on the waterfront, the activities that take place there are important to give evidence. In that sense the recent success of new public spaces created at the Expo’98 site are also relevant. Another part of the argument is supported by a series of unrealized projects for the Lisbon port area as they provide alternative understandings of the evolution of the port area to its present condition. The historic and geographic background should support a possible theoretic frame. 17

4. Projects that change the morphology are an effective instrument to link city and the artificial land of the port

In the other two studied waterfront cities, San Francisco and Barcelona, the theoretical perspective, based on the cultural significance of the industrial landfill, supported and stimulated a different way of thinking about the waterfront. The general consensus about the importance of public spaces in waterfront urban redevelopments emphasizes the importance of shaping the void. But it is mainly after the Barcelona experience that the creation of public space worked as a structuring element in urban design projects; and a special attention has been given to the creation of a continuous set of public spaces which allowed for pedestrians to move freely. The reshape of the land is described by Sola Morales as the cartographic culture of the territory or the culture of working the territory. There are projects that understand the contemporary context in which the landfill is regarded as a ‘prosthesis’ added to the city – a site where the city/water frontier became overlapped with landfill. Such projects value the reconnection of the interrupted relationship between the city and the water and make use of new morphologies at the port land, to overpass the barrier existing in the form of railway lines and heavy traffic roads which created a kind of an urban ‘partition’ causing a ‘cut off effect’. In the cases of Barcelona and San Francisco we will analyze how the ‘cut off effect’ was removed and the consequences brought about by such a removal. For Lisbon transversal connections were planned, but they were never constructed. One of the central questions is: What kind of connections are to be constructed? Should they be visual, physical or symbolic? Should barriers be removed? Who should invest (the Municipality, real estate developers, central government) in new facilities to be build in the port area?

5. Discussion of new infrastructures are made upon specific projects rather than general urban planning, and include artists and scientists participation.

Public spaces are sites of common urban identity where symbolic and artistic components play a significant role. Several scholars, such as Brandão (2001), Gastil (2002), Gravata (1990), Fava (2002), de Lorenzo (2002) and Remesar (2000) claim the importance of integrating works of art and of the participation of artists in the design of 18

symbolic common spaces for the community. Concepts such as cultural landscape and artistic landscape related to art events open up a number of possibilities, considering that they include a deep understanding of the site as a constructed narrative.

Ports are a result of a crossroads between land and sea, where both rail and road meet the ships. The site is a result of these connections that create a specific Genius loci. If one looks to the industrial physical memories, the infrastructures of the port, including piers, cranes, docks, dry docks, quays, etc. we understand that these enormous infrastructures have shaped an image of the city. They were financed by public investors and managed by a public authority as a part of our public domain (Meyer, 2001). There are silent presences in the port area that characterize the atmosphere of the site. The POZOR proposed a rupture and a new concept for the area. We argue that future decisions will continue to fail if the procedure is repeated. The area requires a more holistic strategy to coordinate the existing conflicts between urban spaces and new projects, as well as to bring them up for a fruitful dialogue. The existing infrastructures can be reinterpreted and reuse in a process that include arts&sciences participation. The necessary future urban infrastructures, that are particularly complex at the waterfront should have been used as an important tool in the process of transformation, as it will be explored and illustrate in some of the smaller case studies.

Research Work Structure This research is focuses on the port area of Lisbon, it has four chapters exclusively about Lisbon, and two following chapters on case studies in other cities. The first chapter introduces the contemporary debate regarding waterfront transformations, and explains what concepts and who are the different personalities that have been involved in the discussion. In the second chapter a possible frame to discuss is laid out, since that object necessarily relates to the geography of the whole estuary - the macro scale - and also to the city port relations and even to the smaller scale which consist of specific architectural elements. At a larger scale, APL is considering to build new container terminals. Therefore, there is also a reflection about the inevitable consequences in the existing port activity brought about by port mutations – e. g., hinterland connections become more efficient when supported by intermodal platforms. These issues are


included in some of the topics to be analyzed. At the urban scale, which includes the relation between the historic city and the industrial port, there is a description of the relations between the different administrative powers that independently ruled the port area and its surrounding areas for a century, how that contributed to develop a barrier of infrastructures for modern means of transportation. The Port Authority attempted to carry out a waterfront development plan for the port area, failed to be implemented.

The changes in the port activity have implications in specific sites of both port and city at the level of the smaller or third scale. There has been a tendency for the creation of urban environments on areas under the Port Authority jurisdiction. The expansion is transforming the image of the city and the industrial port as well. A large amount of the discussion is centered on the image of the city, but beyond the image there are new facilities and new programs to be created. Buildings that may transform the city-port relations and the relation to specific buildings and public spaces in the port area. The Port Authority prescribes the necessary public use of the land. This is going to influence future city port relations since we believe that cities rely on their public spaces to claim their identity. The current debate on waterfront urban development focuses the importance of how ‘Cities Reclaim Their Edge’. In that sense, the third chapter discusses what was the ‘edge’ and how it was created become essential to the debate. During the 1900’s transformation of the landscape new relations between city and port were created while ancient relations were interrupted. Among the previous urban relations to the water there are different historic moments as the city registered four major landfills that occurred throughout centuries. The information that had been organized before was not oriented by physical transformations and how they reflect upon the city.

This research compiles dispersed material deposited in Archives of the Municipality, ministries, Port Authority, museums, libraries and the Cabinet for Lisbon Studies (GEO). The organization of the material is flexible and includes drawings, projects, personal records, descriptions any relevant information, in order to create a specific ‘database’ about the object of study, and to allow us to understand some of the mysteries and complexities existing in the port/city relationship. The research material relates to formal and spatial implications and is referenced according to a Past-PresentFuture structure. 20

This chapter dedicated to ‘the creation of the territory’ focuses on the industrial landfill and the transformation of the territory, includes chronological information about the construction of landfill and the importance of controlling the river front. Who built the industrial port? And why an efficient proposal got second prize. Docks and piers are artificial by nature. The first landfill was built for specific activities. The waterfront has been the stage of conflict of powers in which each power wants to accomplish its own projects. Landfill require significant investment and elaborate constructions and mainly result from the need to control the edge. They were executed under the decision of the political leader. The alternative to access and control the water edge was to construct piers that were less permanent or safe but easier to execute for those involved in the maritime activities. Small interventions were more subtle in the transformation of the edge but it is a gentle organic growth that reveals the community desire to work with the water. Arguments based in scientific data question the natural balance of the water flow and the unpredictable transformation of man’s intervention. This was in the center of the debate of the construction of the Industrial Port. For other reasons the industrial port of Lisbon was never completed. Why is it an incomplete project? And what are the implications to the port/city relationship?

The material available covers various disciplines that are assembled from the perspective of an architect. The most complete study was set together and published by the Architects Association in 1988 at the time of the competition designated Ideias para a Renovação da Zona Ribeirnha de Lisboa (Ideas for Waterfront Development of Lisbon). It was a successful initiative with a considerable number of participants. The publication presented an extensive chronological study in which are collected geographic and political information, together with projects and critical texts. At the time the publication became the point of departure for a new interpretation of the waterfront, and it remains an important reference for the debate. Another important reference book was published in 1992 by the Port Authority to celebrate the 100 years of the Port of Lisbon, it is written by an historian. This book puts together a large amount of information that is assembled from the historic point of view, including description of activities and political movements, about the Port of Lisbon and the creation of the Industrial Port. The author comments on the lack of information on economic and technologic components that highly influenced the port area. Such 21

historic research is not centred in the transformation of the city edge; historians situate events in the sequence of time and do not relate territory, in this case artificial territory, to the implications in the city. By contrast Loureiro’s drawings, produced around 1910s, show the records of the various landfills of Lisbon waterfront.

The fourth chapter dedicated to ‘waterfront development at the present in Lisbon’ within the debate is difficult to grasp in the central port area because the Port Authority is in a process of postponing change, and the port area is waiting for a solution since the failure of Pozor. The new Docks (Doca Sto Amaro) proved to be very popular and changed the idea of conflict between city/port. It is a pilot project of small dimension considering the large surfaces of the port area. The Expo’98 waterfront development was a relatively successful experience because a leading organization was created for the purpose of the Expo event. But there has been some controversy regarding how decisions are made using the Expo model. They are carefully evaluated by João Cabral who raises some important questions. At the port area, new questions should discuss if the Expo model could be applied there? And what would that entail? It constitutes a very complete urban project of waterfront development that has given a significant contribution for future projects, but the analysis of the strength and weakness of the project are still being tested. Most important qualities and difficulties of the Expo’98 urban project are related with accessibility to the waterfront and the creation of generous public spaces. Expo is using a new traffic system that favours pedestrians over cars in the central area. When the urban waterfront development is to be considered at the historic centre of Lisbon, the social integration of new comers versus the existing communities is of main importance. Cultural challenges are included in any transformation process. The Expo area intervention managed to create a new centrality, and invested widely in new accessibilities to the site. Some argue the same model is not appropriate for the port area. Through a critical revision we should evaluate if the same strategy is to be used and why may not be right for the port area. The strip located next to the urban center presents an entirely different situation: it is already at the very central part of the city. These issues are to be discussed when comparing the Expo model and the situation at the port area.

The fifth chapter is centered on ‘the ideas and unaccomplished projects’ explores alternative visions about the subject by means of looking at information that has 22

influenced the evolution of the port areas and might continue to influence the next changes. It is never possible to predict the future but there are current issues that have been discussed and that are more likely to be considered. Modern means of transportation and contemporary urban transit systems are expected to influence future solutions of mobility involving the port area. They are the physical expression of an ever present ‘dream of modernity’ that has been associated with the image of the city by the citizens. At the port area new objects with new forms are projected on the water and change the image of the city itself. That image has been reflected by three authors belonging to different generations. Their writings give voice to the common man describing their poetic perception of the port area in their/his relation with the river, the city and the waterfront. The magnetic presence of the water and the necessity to create more public spaces are among some of the factors that will influence future developments. The future is an evolution rarely a revolution, and its predictability may rely not just on the last plan but also on plans for the site which were never implemented and that express expectations and visions of previous generations. There are strategies behind the plans that influence the current shape of the port; they have been hidden under the shadow of generations waiting for the right time to reveal their visions and give form to a variety of new perspectives that will produce future solutions.

The problem presented by the object of study

In Lisbon’s waterfront the industrial port area is under going major transformations. Some warehouses are torn down and the land is cleaned up, and some are readapted to new forms of occupancy, more related to urban activities, while the Port Authority develops the ‘First strategic plan 1990-92’ in which proposed ‘Solution for the expansion of the port of Lisbon’ in other locations of the estuary. The focus of this study is the transformation, through architecture and urban design, of the industrial port area at the centre of Lisbon. In 1994, the Port Authority of Lisbon (APL) submitted for public discussion a new plan for the industrial port - Plano do Ordenamento do Porto de Lisboa (Port of Lisbon waterfront plan), that became known as the Pozor plan. It was intended to reorganize the whole port area, defining new strategies for container terminals, maritime and tourist activities, and also to make adjustments for the future Expo’98 urban development which would be implemented mainly on land under the 23

jurisdiction of the Port Authority. The Pozor covers the Lisbon north bank along a 15 km strip and it divides the territory into six different areas, separating the central and historic part of the city into four adjacent intervention units 2,3,4and 5: 2 Stº Amaro- Alcântara

3 Rocha Conde D’Óbidos – Santos,

4 Cais do Sodré

5 Terreiro do Paço Santa Apolónia.

Intervention units 2 and 3 together extend almost for 3 km of riverfront. It is the wider part of the industrial port, where more land is available and more changes were expected to take place. The urban design of the waterfront development submitted in the Pozor plan has failed to be implemented, and during the last ten years most transversal connections were closed hence increasing the existing separation between city and port. The area from Cais Sodré to Doca Sto Amaro, which includes Alcântara and Santos, is the object of this study (see plate 3 – 4), and from now on it will be designated as ‘port area’. Since the failure to implement Pozor the Port Authority has changed strategy: at the present they are renting some of the existing buildings which have been converted into restaurants and nightclubs surrounded by large parking lots. APL is openly more interested in urban development as several buildings at the port area are rented and last year it represented one third1 of the total income while the expansion of maritime and commercial operations still wait for the new facilities to be built. The location of the construction of the future cruise terminal is still uncertain, while Lisbon is the prime cruise destination in Europe on the Atlantic side.

Since this land is being freed, questions are raised about what to do with it. The object of study involves a great deal of complexity seeing that waterfronts near the historic center, at the core of water cities, raise specific questions of centrality, social context, strong historic presences, geographic strategies, and the conflict between urban and port. Other cities facing similar problems managed the port area landfill in different ways. There is no ready-made ‘prescription’ to achieve a successful solution. In fact the complexity of the problem is such that each urban situation requires a different solution. Municipalities and Port Authorities alone, working separately, will not solve the problem. Successful transformations require alternative mechanisms of city/port


See APL oficial report

(21,8% - 2001) (27,3% - 2002) (28,2% - 2003)


management with broader participation of the urban actors. This is the main reason why, in the case of Lisbon, another Port Authority plan is likely to fail.

An alternative to the conflict between city and port should take a different perspective. New ideas and a number of future possibilities of architecture and landscape architecture are to be considered in the urban waterfront redevelopment. Each city has a different potential and should rely on it to find answers. Therefore a deeper knowledge of the port area should consider its birth, its development and its decline. Future solutions will come from the understanding of an evolutionary process of this space in constant mutation. Nevertheless one should as well bear in mind that all transformation (being a process) is subject to unforeseen circumstances and conditions, therefore some of its causes and effects are ‘becoming and not yet actual’.

3. Master plan – Pozor commissioned by the APL in 1994 at Alcântara


Relations between the Port Authority and the Municipality of Lisbon As I write container terminals are still in operation in the city centre, although their future is uncertain given the difficulties of the most necessary connections with the hinterland, and a new intersection by road and railway to get containers in and out of the port through the congested city next to it. The average of 2170 trucks per day are expected to cross the city, during the next year if the railway intersection is not built. Port Authority register an increasing use of railway (from 3 to 25%) which will mean 16 trains a day passing through the neighbourhood. To find the best solution for an efficient crossroads the Port Authority has set a competition for proposals on the new intersection (see plate 5 and 6), and the project that was awarded the first prize waits to be built. The project requires Alcântara underground river to be relocated in an extension of 500 meters.

For the last ten years, there has been a discussion that involves APL and the Municipality revealing an atmosphere of misunderstandings concerning Lisbon port/city

4. Show the proposals at Santos area designated – intervention unit 3and trains mixed with heavy urban traffic, that no one wants to cost. The situation is 26

future challenges. The Alc창ntara junction is an expensive project, as it involves trucks ambiguous both for the port and the city behind it, and it is a small indicator of a whole more complex situation, regarding the port activity. There are three possible main scenarios. City and port agree to construct this junction and maintain the container activity in the heart of the city, and also agree to build the new cruise terminal Jardim do Tabaco. Another scenario involves a national strategic decision to relocate the deep sea container terminal either in the south bank or other location in the estuary. The Port Authority would use facilities at Alc창ntara to expand the cruise terminal, Santos would also be used for tourism related activities. The last scenario is to privilege container terminal at Sines, end deep sea terminal at Lisbon and replace for waterfront urban development. Which would also mean, Alc창ntara and Santos shifting towards new uses. The third scenario would weaken the APL and the port activity, since container activity generates an increasing economic benefit and cruise traffic expands significantly as Lisbon becomes a primary destination. Containers and Cruises are significant source of income. Decision making has been confusing since decision should include national, regional and local between the Municipality of Lisbon, the Port Authority and the local Government.

One of the objectives of this study is to discuss the present industrial port activity, namely the existence of container terminals in the specifically designated port area because it is contrary to the evolution registered in other similar ports such as Barcelona or Marseille, in the Mediterranean but also San Francisco, Rotterdam and many others.

5 and 6 - New Alc창ntara Intersection include 1,7 km railway flyover to link port area to the multimodal platforms.


The end of container activity at Alcântara and Santos does not mean end of port activity in the area. The transformation of port areas in the urban context seems inevitable which for the case of Lisbon raises an important question: who should develop a new research project for the port area since the previous project failed? Like in several other European Port Cities, the land of the port area of Lisbon is under the jurisdiction of the APL, who is still its landlord, therefore they have a ‘natural’ right, however we register a growing number of transformation that were not carried out by the Port Authority alone.If the Port Authority should not conduct the new project, who should continue to lead the process? Another relevant question is: the problem of port area at the centre of Lisbon should be taken as a whole or should it be taken in pieces. Which model of urban design is more likely to fit the Lisbon situation? The area of the landfill was never thought of as urban expansion, but it deeply changed the urban scenery (see plate 7), thus it became part of it, and furthermore it achieved the transformation of the image cityscape from a prestigious residential area to an operational area that includes shipyards, port facilities, cranes, and modern buildings. How should the functional space of the port with its industrial atmosphere relate to the historic city next to it?

This research project will also collect and handle information of comparative urban cases that evolved in positive ways and that bear comparison with the Lisbon case. Examples that improved the city/port relationship constitute an alternative frame to look at, as they introduced concepts and ideas that are now tested. The confrontation of such data widens the discussion and will influence future solutions. The analysis of similar

7. View of the Santos Bay before landfill, Museu da Cidade Collection A. Wagner, 1808


8. View of the Terreiro do Paรงo, designed by Manuel Lacerda coordenated by Jorge Gaspar. In Valis, 1990

cases together with an investigation about the formation of the port area of Lisbon defines more clearly the realm of the present debate. The discussion about the port area necessarily involves different actors in a complex city/port relationship, and the problem can not be reduced to a discussion that is exclusively concerned with ports, or maritime traffic, or city planning, or urban design or with the industrial heritage legacy of the port area (see plate 8). The discussion involves all of these dimensions, it has multiple implications and one of the main tasks of this work is to understand better what interconnections there might be between each and all of them.

Predictability by comparison - case studies

In the sixth chapter two cases are presented, the selection was made from most similar situations that have a direct relation to specific characteristics defined as specially relevant for city of Lisbon waterfront. There are two urban cases that involve long periods of time and a large investment to carry out the transformation of their historical


port areas. They include urban operations similar to the ones that may occur in Lisbon. After defining what potential problems of the present planning policies exist at this particular site, case studies show which design model may be used in the urban development of the port area.

Besides the model of design the study analyzes also which forms of partnership between private and public sectors are set up in each of the following case studies: San Francisco and Barcelona. San Francisco due to the geographical similarity of the Bay with the Lisbon Estuary, and Barcelona due to cultural resemblances in the context of Iberian port cities.

- The waterfront development in Barcelona shows that plans based on zoning strategies cannot be used. Instead the Barcelona model evolves under a strategy based on specific site projects. The political atmosphere supported architects in designing changes for the city. Catalans managed to protect the port area land from major financial operations and they invested in the creation of considerable amount of public space meaningfully associated with social/cultural facilities.

- San Francisco waterfront renovation started much earlier, in the late 50s, and it is referred to as a successful transition carried out in a different manner. The geography, topography and the water profile of the Bay Area are very similar to the ones existing in Lisbon: the physical features influence the solution and the port of Oakland on the other side of the Bay has been growing while the port of S. Francisco decays. For both cities the area next to the industrial port is their historical centre, the place where urban life follows its course through generations since the birth of the old town. In this sense issues related with attracting locals and visitors to the site seem misplaced. Solutions to reinvent the central port area were discussed taking in account the type of infrastructures that were needed. The analysis takes in consideration three aspects that determine the success of the transformation.

In San Francisco and Barcelona the dialogue between Municipality and Port Authority promoted change. This started at a political level, and contributed greatly to alter and reorganize mechanisms of power and planning policies of town management. Another example that is proving to achieve high levels of success is the St Paul Waterfront 30

Corporation, a non-profitable organization established in 1996 by the Mayor. St Paul has a structure involving a large participation in the process of waterfront transformation which is worth discussing.

The existence of major physical barriers creating a ‘cut off effect’ between city and port was central to waterfront development. The port area was separated and segregated from the surrounding neighbourhood, and not removing the barriers would mean to cut short the last opportunity for the city to claim the river and create an urban relation with the water.

And finally there is a description of specific events that were important for the process of transformation in each city and vary from one case to the other but are relevant for the debate. This research includes the evolution of the landfill in San Francisco as well as the first plans for the waterfront based on concepts of Festival Market and International Congress Centres, and how public participation influenced the process. In Barcelona, special programs to finance the historic centre mixed with the promotion of pedestrian use of the areas have influenced the urban shift of a city that had followed a car culture model until the 1980’s. Each city went through a very different process of change and faced specific constraints.

In both cases the city/port relationship was deeply transformed. They are both considered as reference cases in the contemporary debate on waterfront urban development which are closely related to the case of Lisbon port area.

Smaller Case studies – compare to conceive changes

There is the underlying principle in this research that architecture is the ultimate expression of individual and collective physical need and will; architecture is the art of the city. In the sixth chapter, which is the last one, a number of medium and small projects are reviewed. Smaller projects require less investment and can be implemented over short term periods of time; they have their own architectural interest (see plate 9). But why should we look at all these case studies? Can they be used as a basis of conceptual ideas meant for the port area of Lisbon? In smaller projects and architectural 31

objects one can identify specific relations to the waterfront symbolic character, the historic value related to a common memory of Artistic Value/Industrial Legacy. Smaller interventions also involve urban design solutions, and some of the projects include decisions about urban scale that face similar challenges present at the port area. Each case contributes with special details that are relevant to be commented. Questions related to the philosophy of the projects in terms of art, history, social, or cultural concerns are discussed individually. All together they form a gallery of examples that illustrate the most interesting philosophical approaches regarding waterfront projects. None of them presents a complete or accurate philosophy but together they complement each other. It is understood that significant buildings that improve the city’s image and their public life have been built along the waterfront in the last decades. Although previous generations also had particular concerns with the image of the city projected upon the riverfront. In fact some projects were selected to serve as short references that are a valuable contribution for the construction of the larger argument about what a contemporary project should include when facing a particular site at the port area.

In order to construct the argument several case studies are mentioned because they can be deemed as references and solutions that inform about the future urban redevelopment.

How can contemporary architecture express the quality of urban façade in an historical context? It is discussed how new projects may relate to ancient buildings and improve the present port area. The discussion is not centred on how it looks, if it is high or small, twisted or trendy. These are questions not to be included here. The discussion is mainly centred on the formal, spatial implications of new buildings and their contribution to the urban landscape, as well as on the importance of the public space in the former port area. That includes a variety of indicators of symbolic, artistic and cultural nature but also sustainable strategies between city and port.

The selection includes projects that were never built, others that are under construction, and utopias that will never get to be built. To separate them by categories of physical development or accordingly to their possible or impossible actual realization would reduce the discussion. The objective is to emphasize the ideas and concepts at the level of the architectural projects in order to formulate an hypothesis, to test whether projects 32

of architecture and landscape architecture implemented at the waterfront are capable of improving the relation between citizens and their river, of favoring the industrial legacy of the former industrial port, and of developing the strength of the cultural landscape and its potential. What new uses are in line for the port area? How can designers make use, in a creative way, of the landfill area if the community does not know how to deal with this transition? However some decision makers including members of the community with cultural, economic or political voice are already aware that this is an unique chance for Lisbon to recover a lost relationship with the river – moreover the only chance offered in a full century – and that it has an immense potential to improve the city of Lisbon. The recent experience of the Expo’98 gave the citizens a new understanding of contemporary architecture and brought some of the recent objects of architecture to an iconic level.

9. Drawing for the competition (Tenerife, 2003) reshapes the morphology of the land.


In the central port area, if the industrial activity moves elsewhere, it is the right moment for the city of Lisbon to make use of this opportunity to transform the port area and reclaim the edge with the water. We are in a creative cultural moment that knows heritage is not just legacy but what we create today. Critics are aware of problems related to the tabula rasa model implemented at the Expo site, and of the loss of references caused in a process of rupture with the port area’s previous memories. Lisbon could profit from this knowledge, and could be free to explore the potential of the site as an evolutionary process. At the end some conclusions will be presented from the discussion. New solutions emerge from the methodology used in this thesis. Some of the selected case studies are inserted at particular sites of the port area, to suggest a new potential discussion and enrich the present debate.



Chapter 1 – Contemporary Debate

Introducing who contributes for the debate


Creative uses of the port area


Cultural heritage – engine of the city identity?




Introducing who contributes for the debate

The debate on waterfront has developed strongly since the 1970s, presented in several magazines and books, discussed in international conferences, and participated by a variety of scholars coming from different fields. Research centres are registering and informing about the a variety of waterfront renovation. In Washington D.C. there is the Waterfront Centre, in Italy the Cities on Water or citá d’acqua is established in Venice, in France at Le Havre seats the organization Villes et Ports that publishes and organizes several international conferences. These are the larger organizations, but there are several local and smaller organizations involved in the debate that contribute significantly, such as the Waterfronts of Art Conferences organized by Polis Research Center, the Public Art Observatory whose studies are published by the University of Barcelona with Antoni Remesar as Editor. Some architects are involved with this organisations and have contributed enormously to the debate by means of project or criticism. To look at them in more detail we should start with the pioneer group.

The Waterfront Centre is a non-profitable organization founded by Ann Breen and Dick Rigby in 1981, in Washington D.C. They have published two important books: Waterfronts: Cities Reclaim Their Edge, 1994 and The New Waterfront – a Worldwide Urban Success Story in 1996. The organization of workshops and the provision of community consultants for waterfront projects is a major contribution that the Waterfront Centre has given to many waterfront development projects. Their last book compiles cases chosen from all around the world and classifies six major groups of waterfronts: the commercial, the cultural, educational and environmental, the historic, the recreational, the residential, and the working ones whose cruise ship terminals and ferry terminals are presented. The International Conferences bring together people with a wide range of interests and from various sectors. It is their aim to have community leaders, environmental associations, private developers, engineers, designers and even dock manufacturers participating in the events. The main interest of the presentations is to cover planning and design, economic development as well as cultural issues. The waterfront center has set an ‘Urban Waterfront Manifesto’ where it argued that ‘waterfronts above all factors give each community a chance to express its individuality’. But how can the community reflect through change their dreams and


aspirations on the waterfront ? And why main trends common in the 80’s and the 90’s have failed to express the individuality of the community?

In order to offer an alternative to ready-made or standard solutions, in my understanding of the Waterfront Centre activities the most interesting one, which has a direct action upon the urban waterfront projects and their communities, is the Annual Award that usually takes place within the International Conference in which several projects are analysed by the jury. The president of the jury in 2001, the architect Karen Fiene, explains that most projects and concepts value cultural and environmental issues as the awards are distributed according to the following categories: Artistic, Cultural, Educational








Preservation/Adaptive Reuse - Park/Walkway/Recreation. Fiene puts her emphasis on the strategic planning service provided by the organization that looks into the community's heritage along the waterfront and how it might be valued, the importance of public art, and offers interpretive opportunities.

The Waterfront Centre puts considerable emphasis not only upon the uniqueness of the community, expressed through cultural and recreational aspects, but also upon the new challenges of the environment. Urban waterfront development is seen as a once in a lifetime time opportunity for cities to deal with change by means of questioning their dreams and wishes.

Cities on Water started in 1989 and is also a non-profit association based in Venice, with the aim of promote and develop activities related to the water and the city. The organization also promote Rete 2001 a program of co-operation between ports and cities in Mediterranean European and Latin America, and which publishes the six-monthly review Portus. In the magazine were published many articles and papers about Lisbon. Among the authors there is Natércia Cabral, President of the Port Authority, Professor Jorge Gaspar, geographer, João Figueira de Sousa from the Department of Geography and Regional Planning, Antonio Nabais, historian. The magazine is directed by Joan Allemany and Rinio Bruttomesso who was the publisher of the second meeting in Venice attended by a number of experts and scholars from European countries but also the US to discuss the waterfront. Bruttomesso then published Waterfronts. A new frontier for cities on water (1993), Cities on water transport (1995), Land – Water 39

Intermodal Terminals (1998) Water and Industrial Heritage (1999). It is a very dynamic group of people that decided to found an organization to look after Mediterranean Ports and Latin American for Cultural proximity. These ports are very different geographically, they were constructed under different circumstances and range a wide set of political and economic conditions, but that can be organised as part of a complex whole for cultural reasons. Cities on Water have organized a number of international lectures starting in 1989 and some of the most well known regional and urban planning experts presented. Rete 2001 aims to involve administrators and representatives of organisations, decision makers meaning port authority leaders, politicians. Issues discussed can go from methodological policies to economics or historic interest, but always regarding City and Port.

The third main organisation is L’Association International des Villes et Ports (AIVP) and was created in 1988 by Antoine Rufenacht, currently the Mayor of Havre, France The association engages an international network of public and private agents interested in the development of port cities. They provide and exchange information about how to invest and what should be done to achieve good results in waterfront development process. It is a major organizations that also present at the first world fair for waterfront urban development. It took place in London, Waterfront Expo 2003 and was oriented towards the creation of new marinas and luxury housing development. The AIVP demand a broader view besides the economic opportunities, and have been organizing several International Conferences and publishing the presentations, inviting mostly, port authorities members, municipalities representatives, urban and port agents and commercial businesses. Their last International Conference was in Lisbon with the title, Modernity and Identity. These qualities are to be known of main importance for any port city and the conference was successful attracting 700 participants from 140 port cities. Presentations explain how municipalities, urban developers, port authorities and their economic and institutional partners act upon the inevitable changes that maritime transportation is going through. Written communications at the Lisbon conference include mainly Spanish and Italian scholars and myself as the only Portuguese, AIVP claim that new answers are coming from often innovative solutions and it is that debate and exchange they want to promote. In order, ‘to keep cultural specificity, value local heritage, promote sustainable development and improve the quality of life of the locals are the indispensable ingredients to any waterfront future development.’ 40

AIVP is collecting a large amount of information, including a network of references and contacts, it is not their aim to select, to develop a critical approach or to promote certain type of solutions.

Waterfronts of Art organize conferences and workshops regarding artistic and social issues in the urban development of waterfronts, that are seen as laboratories of experimentation and consequently offer new possibilities for special structures in port cities. Antoni Remesar and Malcolm Miles are two prominent university professors that organize a whole group of activities and publications. They are based in Barcelona and Plymouth respectively which brings to the International Conference both Mediterranean and Anglo-Saxon cultures. A number of scholars, researchers, artists from a variety of backgrounds get together to discuss and debate recent strategies for waterfront development in which the importance of public space is characterized by public art, problems of sustainability have influence in the urban design, and how the waterfront concept goes beyond the port/city interface. Most presentations present critical positions and carefully construct an argument that is diverse and yet similar in its essence. How the role of public art and urban design promote the city’s social identity and how artist act in front of public space. It was in these conferences that I met scholars as Catherine De Lorenzo and Richard Berman who kindly provide specific documentation about artistic influence in the process of waterfront urban development. Conferences include Port Authorities and Municipality representatives to present and discuss planning strategies and economic investment between private and public partnerships. Urban designers review the effects of their projects and scholars analyze the context in which waterfront becomes a product of historical and social conditions. The presence of historians of urban development, for instance, proved to be a keen contribution to know the historical progression of the waterfront. Historians produce a critical frame for each case and situate it within the progression of time, informing about the past, the discussion becomes more precise about the present and also about future creative processes of development. New answers are also found by looking into the past.

Most organizations underline the importance of the cultural importance and the role of local identity in the process of waterfront development but Waterfronts of Art is the one to promote crossing dialogues between, art and social science, urban design and history, 41

symbolic economy and urban policy, architecture and public space in order to investigate cultural identity. I would argue that these meetings and consequent publications have given a significant contribution for the future debate on waterfront development. The 11th Conference of the IPHS – International Planning History Society under the title Planning Models and the Culture of Cities also had a section of presentations about waterfronts, and it was an opportunity to confront some of my ideas with other experts in the field.

Mainly presented by academic and specialized

researchers, the meeting brought together Oriol Bohigas the master mind of the Barcelona Urbanismo and Michael Hebbert who discusses the Barcelona model of the last twenty years.

There are some scholars who have been involved with waterfront, personalities, which were not mentioned yet. In alphabetic order, Claude Chaline, Han Meyer, João F. Sousa, Peter Hall, René Borruey and Timothy Sieber. They have different interests and have contributed to the waterfront discussion from urban design perspective. Containing subtle differences there are some architects involved with projects for waterfronts who write about it from the designer perspective. Either as designers or as critics of waterfront projects their contribution is from the architect point of view. Alcino Soutinho, Elia Zenghelis, Joan Busquets and Stefano Boeri, are among the architects whose ideas and writings are relevant to this study. There are many others that I will refer to, when addressing specific subjects or particular cases.

Han Meyer, who is a Professor of Urban Design at TU Delft, has written the most complete book on the subject. In 1999 the English version was called City and Port, transformation of port cities, London, Barcelona, New York and Rotterdam. Meyer’s first chapter situates the industrial port and its impact in the city within a specific time frame: The Nineteenth-Century Port City on Its Way to the Twenty-First Century is the title and opens the book with The Identity of the Port City: The Emergence of ‘the Cultural Factor’. Exquisitely organized and documented, the book extensively refers to the evolution of public space and how it can be recapture to the city. In each of the four cities specific cultural differences are referred and analyzed, because each port is a particular case. The deepness of the document extensively analyses each city and the urban design from the historic, geographic and cultural point of view, and the development of the relation between cities and their ports. Another important book is by 42

Raymond W. Gastil, called ‘Beyond the Edge – New York’s New Waterfront’. It is published with the Van Alen Institute New York a leading promoter of innovative urban design and particularly focused on the waterfront of New York. In his book Gastil critically reviews some waterfront projects (see plate 1) around the world and name it ‘The World’s New Culture of Waterfront Design’. To discuss the future possibilities offered specifically to New York waterfront, he merges projects being commissioned but that are not built yet, design ideas presented for The Van Alen Institute Design Competition and future projects, such as the Olympics in 2012 to illustrate a alternative framework. As described by Aaron Betsky, his vision is both ‘grand and detailed (…) an exhilarating view of what New York could become’. The readers necessarily shifts their perception regarding the New York waterfront after reading it.

Chaline and Hall are both professors, the first in Paris the second at Berkeley, California in urban planning. Sousa is a geographer and Sieber is an anthropologist, they both know the Lisbon case and considering their background of research they have significant contributions for the debate. Borruey is focus on Marseille, like Busquets is mainly interested in Barcelona but they manage to look at something local and make it global. Soutinho was the consultant architect for the port authority of Lisbon from 1994 to 2003 and has publish papers and given lectures in various universities in Europe. Elia Zenghelis enter the discussion as master architect at the Forum&workshop of Marseille to discuss the future of the waterfront and published a book Making the City by the Sea, with Berlage Institute, Mies Van der Rohe Foundation, Barcelona and Marseille schools of Architecture, Italian Architect Stefano Boeri, has been involved with the transformation of the Port of Genoa, Naples, Mytilene, Salerno, Trieste and has written extensively about waterfront development in the Mediterranean context. All of them have quite different perceptions of the phenomena therefore they have various positions but experts from different backgrounds write about the same subject they somehow complement each other.

In short, the institutions and scholars referred above have produced some of the most influential ideas that contribute for the current debate, on urban waterfront development. The first generation of urban waterfront renovation was mainly oriented towards a type of Festival Marketplace fad, that was in 1980’. During the 1990’ it was the concept of urban entertainment district, (see plate 2) but the last generation is claiming major 43

importance for the public spaces and their significance in the city (plate 3). That is addressed by individual scholars in different manners, and I separate them in two large sets of discussion. The symbolism attached to the waterfront and consequent cultural significance as the engine of transformation and the unique possibilities given to water cities by means of creative use of their port areas which are central for urban life. Industrial Ports Landfill happened in around the end of nineteenth century beginning of twentieth century there is now an opportunity for cities to intervene creatively in the landfill and reclaim the edge.

1. Richard Rogers partnership in exhibition: “London as it could be�, 1986

2. Johor Coastal Development, Malaysia, Model of accommodation islands, 1993

3. Xochimilco Ecological Park, Mexico City, Grupo de DiseĂąo Urbano, 1993 View of the pumping system .


Creative uses of the port area

The perception from the waterside is unique and defines the image of the city. At the landfill new shapes may emerge to compose the image of the city. The discussion is centred in the new possibilities and exciting opportunities to which urban waterfront developments can offer their citizens. The transformation can hold a projection of the city and its image and, at the same time, be a reflection of the city itself. Being the landfill free for other possible uses what can be done? Italian architect Stefano Boeri, (2000, 71) who is involved with waterfront projects in Mediterranean cities, believes the meaning should remain in these places where architecture is still capable of,

generating real surprises, changes of scale, with resonance between different spaces distant from one another. What is at stake in all this is the safeguard of a global idea of the Mediterranean city, and not just a single problem of updating a given area.

In most cases, connecting city and port has particular problems of urban discontinuity and specific conditions, either geographic or topographic, from the natural settlement of the hills to the flat land of the port created over landfill. In many cases the geometry traced at the port area does not have a continuous relation with the urban fabric and with the professional activities and social groups that may produce quite a

complex interconnection of urban and maritime areas, a network of crossculture zones of tolerance, and whose métissage renders them apt to cater to an extraordinary diversity of activities which, contrary to what might be expected, form a compact, coherent and clearly defined environment. (Boeri, 2000, 69)

In search for the evolutionary identity of port cities and their relation with adjacent port areas most authors agree upon the influence of the cultural factor. However each author has a personal understanding of what can be defined as culture in view of the multiplicity of indicators that constitute culture or the expression of it. Urban environment is a result of many different aspects, including history, climate, topography, etc. At the harbour there is an additional ‘element’ that Boeri calls the ‘extraordinary mobility’, in terms of fluxes and types of occupancy throughout the 45

creation of industrial ports. For southern European port cities harbour areas have been spaces in constant mutation, always changing and adapting to new configurations required by different technologies. Which is characterized by the ‘unpredictable character’ of the port area. Water cities face the land, the artificial landfill created between them and the water, just the land since the industrial port is gone, and there is an enormous vacant surface that once was the actual port, and that void has a life of its own that claims to be reinvented by its creator: the city lying next to it. As it is described by Borruey (2001, 50), a French architect,

‘the port area found itself at the cutting edge of the most direct experimentation with ‘modern space’. Far more than the architecture of utilitarian buildings, the experience with which the port world confronts us is the history of the architecture of free space, of an inordinately large territory, affected first and foremost by such categories of movement as the fluidity and celerity of circulation. (…) But it remains at the same time a real territory, also marked by human emotional ties and their resistance to the tabula rasa; the traces of its own past are constantly visible, which at times endows it with almost urban qualities of density, interpenetration and memory.

If the void is more important than buildings, what kind of urban space is to be created for the waterfront? Although most scholars agree about the value of empty urban space, it is nevertheless a fragile position. The expression of the void is most likely to fail as the city used to register a number of activities related with the water. A deeper understanding of how the site was created is needed to elaborate another idea about the waterfront transformation (see plate 4,5). The emptiness in the city to gaze at nature has been argued by some scholars, thus the construction of a narrative that describes and reveals its uniqueness will provide valuable information that will work for future orientation of waterfront development. Once the historic and geographic background is incorporated and understood, a new theoretic view will take shape and then offer and stimulate a different way of thinking the waterfront (see plate 6)


4. Photomontage of a bird’s eye view of the Olympic Sculpture Park in Seattle (Weiss and Manfredi, 2001)

5. Section of the project is described as ‘neither the ideal of the untouched site, awaiting the architect’s free-standing monolith, nor its opposite, the privileged ‘natural’ or ‘historical’ site, to which any architectural intervention must defer, are legitimate for contemporary work. Instead, it is necessary to work from a definition of landscape that incorporate infrastructures (rail lines, highway off-ramps, utility lines), history (geologic, political, cultural), and natural systems (water, vegetation, toxicity).’ (Gastil, 2002, 176-77)

6. Future landscape covers modern means of transportation and its necessary infrastructures.


Cultural heritage – engine of the city identity? Why do port cities have such interest in their waterfronts? Particularly in Southern European countries the waterfront was the centre of the city, the core of urban life, although during the last century the creation of industrial facilities brought profound changes, and they gradually evolved to be the city backyard. Most waterfront development plans are elaborated from a contemporary perspective, without addressing the pre-industrial evolutionary process of the port, that is to say not understanding the whole context, creating rupture in the evolutionary process. Scholars such as Rodrigues (1999) Bruttomesso (2001), argue that deeper studies are required to comprehend the interventions that have a multidisciplinary nature and to understand the influence of several urban agents. Based on the idea of urban complexity at the waterfront Bruttomesso (2001, 42) explains that “complexity is a quality that distinguishes the more complete, articulate urban organisms. It is often the outcome of long processes involving successive historic phases and projects implemented in these phases; from this viewpoint, the complexity of the city is a product of intelligence and continuous work of construction, often over many centuries.” This work is still in progress and the profound changes of city-port relations brought about by waterfront urban development is an opportunity to value and reinterpret these phases. Previous projects left marks of various kinds that in some cases only remain small fragments. This is understood as the new starting point for the study and transformation of reality, Rodrigues (1999, 12) explains that “it is not possible to research and act without considering the dialectic implications, the multiple and reciprocal relations and occurrences between the phenomena.” Nevertheless some aspects are common to different cases and have been extensively documented. Scholars and project designers have contributed with alternative ideas which widen the views of Port Authorities.

How cultural heritage can value the port area is seen differently among several entities, for instance, the Waterfront Centre, based in North America came out with a Manifesto in 1999, Urban Waterfront Manifesto Issued, that claim the unique cultural richness of each situation and the importance of artistic intervention to celebrate difference rather than repetition. Below are parts of the Manifesto.


Waterfront work is not just about economic development, is not simply a design question or only about environmental issues. Rather it is a fusion of these and related disciplines that should be sought. It is vital that communities distinguish between learning from good examples of waterfront planning and development elsewhere and blindly copying them. Waterfront concepts and projects should flow from the nature of each place and embody its essential spirit. Public art installations should be encouraged and the active participation of each city's arts community sought from the outset of waterfront planning, to ensure that artists' special way of seeing things is incorporated.

The Manifesto is signed by a number of personalities that come from a variety of activities; Municipalities, Waterfront Development Corporations, Port Authorities, Planners, Universities, Architects, Engineers, Town Managers, Urban and Economic Development Groups, Waterfront Coalition, Centre for Landscape Interpretation, Conservation Heritage Design, Water Resources Authority, Historic Preservation, City Parks Department, Department of Economic Development, Cultural Foundations, Coastal Plan & Programme, Concrete Flotation Systems Inc., Energy resources, Waterways Institute, River Action, Inc., Tourism Association, History & Landmarks Foundation, etc. Such is the interest on urban waterfront development and the diversity of issues raised for the city and their citizens. The fusion to incorporate all these civil components has been directly related to the architects activity. Architects hold the responsibility to coordinate specific components of various fields, technical, social, engineer, materials, landscape, and produce a holistic proposal. Further more, the architect is in the centre of the debate between all these participation and promoting dialogue between particular fields when necessary and taking decisions. Besides the coordination and design, architects are able to read information embedded in the urban fabric that structures most of the urban elements. The urban fabric is like a narrative and reveal the complexity imprinted in the territory, as a written text that carries fragments of relevant moments. The relation between these fragments that last in the port area may be dysfunctional in new urban developments, but instead may be used as motifs of cultural significance and consequently reveal new urban forms. According to Meyer this is possible and desirable because,


‘In each plan and design for old harbour areas exists a noticeable emphasis on the cultural significance that these areas are supposed to have, to which an exceptional power is ascribed and which is deemed to be of great importance to the further development of the city. In recent decades, urban planners everywhere have tried to separate the spatial design of urban areas from functionalist principles and to pay more attention to the cultural significance of the urban form. ‘Cultural identity’, ‘cultural value’, and ‘cultural quality’ are concepts that currently saturate the jargon of urban planning. Within a short time these concepts have become criteria that are taken for granted, even though they often lack clarity of definition and the objectives they represent may be obscure. Recent plans for urban planning conversions of obsolete harbour areas are some of the most spectacular exponents of the emergence of the ‘cultural factor’. (Meyer, 1999, 14)

The culture factor imprints an uniqueness in the cities, reminding us that there are no standard solutions concerning waterfront development. Besides each case is geographically different. The topography, the sea features, the landscape influence harbours and port cities. Design research projects are among the most important instruments for waterfront future transformation. By the end of the 1980s the competition for ideas to the regeneration of the Lisbon’s waterfront gave a significant contribution for the debate. The proposals challenged not just the relation of the city with the river but change our perception regarding present oportunities. Design research projects are discuss in the chapters dedicated to the case studies. Most of them are not implemented, but they influence the way of thinking about urban regeneration process of the port area. Valis – Valorização de Lisboa, in 1990, a new program – coordinated by Jorge Gaspar, proposed ideas for specific sites at the waterfront. Valis is not specific to the waterfront of Lisbon, but presents suggestions to improve some areas of city (see plate 7) We will discuss cultural aspects of design research projects and analyse how can a specific design translate or express specific cultural inherent to industrial ports? Port areas have been deeply characterized by an industrial atmosphere, industrial port activities were usually not limited by the physical boundaries of industrial complexes. Next to them, new urban settlements were created or transformed to host a vast population that work in the industrial port. A Portuguese architect that write about this, Nuno Portas (1998, 4) describes that, 50

“During the long period of Modern History cities gradually replaced the old barriers formed by their fortified walls, custom-houses or shipyards, for the new webs of railways, highways, docks and warehouses, of bulk cargo and containers. The waterfronts with cities leaning over them were an increasing logistic boundary for both the economical operations and their communities. But due to the industrial-port environment, port cities have seen their waterfront neighbourhood deteriorate, and become an hazardous place.”

Such a statement introduces another level of complexity into the debate, as many urban waterfront developments have erased the previous industrial memories and blurred the boundaries between the city and the port activity. We can identify some of the ‘main trends’ regarding waterfront renovation: the city appropriation of public or common space; increase the population density in central urban areas; the installation of festival markets, commercial facilities associated to leisure and cultural activities. NorthAmerican models which were the first to be executed have been criticized for limiting these areas to recreational and commercial purposes. Ironically most European port cities have pursued the same goals in their redevelopment programs. In Southern Europe the port land is strategically central to the city, therefore there is no need to attract people or investors, because they are already there.

7. Valis program (1990) Above: Picture of the railway between city and port. Below: Sketch shows a bridge connecting Alcântara and the Port of Lisbon.


Urban culture is made of fragments that juxtaposed in a number of layers organized in time. Each generations contributes for the transformation of the territory express and influence the next. Urban design in the central areas of these cities reflects the complex dialogue established throughout the centuries. (see plate 8) From the juxtaposition of layers emerge the urban design, if waterfront projects search for a quest of identity in port cities, how does that related urban life and industrial activities? Is recovering industrial artefacts as urban fragments integrated in the process of transformation enough to preserve a part of local? French scholar Wilson (2000, 34) argues that is rather doubtful because most projects use images and ideas related with sea activities in a ‘joyful’ manner that does not match reality, is distorted and explains that this,

‘is shown in pretty miniature in a mirror that belies its real scale: dykes, docks, hangars and giant cranes. We must look elsewhere for authentic aspects that might serve in defining guidelines for urban design. Not in the traditional function of the port, nor even in its seafront location, but in the cultural history of the connections between infrastructure zone and city.”

The importance of linking city and port is one of the major issues that are approached by several scholars. When one analysis the first models of transformation their main purpose was ‘waterfront revitalization’, with emphasis placed on the waterfront, usually areas of landfill, and use them for urban expansion rather than on a link to the city. Today the emphasis tends to be on recovering the original city link with the water (see plate 9). Some projects claim to rebind the broken link between city and water through the port, which is quite different or the opposite of using the areas now available on the waterfront for the creation of a new urban development, thus reinventing an urban reality that blurs their previous lives. The cultural history and the industrial character influence urban life, and they may create the foundations for a new urban design, one that includes and integrates the existing complexity rather than excludes it. It is a process of ‘inclusion’ during which the landfill is taken as a one time opportunity offered to the city.


8. Model’s photograph of De Boompjes, historic central area of Rotterdam. design by the City of Barcelona team, Jordi Henrich, with Joan Forgas, Architect. ‘The central element of this initiative was to ask experts from a number of foreign cities to draw up new design for De Boompjes. Inspiration could be drawn and lessons learnt from strategies adopted elsewhere. The key selection criterion was that each city had to have successfully developed its own waterfront.’1

9.The sections illustrate an urban promenade.


Section I – Object of Study

Chapter 2 – Lisbon’s port area

Macro Scale


Urban Scale


Detail Scale




Rethinking waterfront cities: issues Lisbon should consider The current debate regarding the object of this study is a fragmented one, expressing the fragmentation of powers ruling over the territory. Some authors claim the viability of port activities in this area while others argue that port activities should mix with the city life, and some argue the port activities should give place to urban expansion. It is not a new discussion, but is becoming more present within the last years. The land at and around the port area has large empty surfaces that are a gift for the overcrowded historic city. The discussion engages a wide range of urban actors to whom the development of the waterfront seems appealing. It is an opportunity without precedents to update equipments or to create new ones necessary for the population, although new trends defend that empty areas must remain flexible to be transformed by future generations. These ‘flexible areas’ may serve as a stimulus for a dialogue between previous generations (through the traces they left) and present and futures ones that in this way would share the creation of the city. In this chapter the presentation of extensive information regarding the object of study will define a possible frame to discuss the port area of Lisbon. After the definition of the central argument and the presentation of the hypothesis, specific information is assembled according to three different scales. The port area discussion necessarily relates simultaneously to the scale of the estuary (plate1), the scale of the historic city, and to specific buildings and public spaces. This analysis is focused on the Macro Scale, Urban Scale and Detailed Scale. The research structure includes a separated investigation of each of the three scales, and the discussion is oriented to specific issues concerning a particular scale. Most of the problems and of the potentialities regarding each scale are different in content and can be referred separately. However, some issues affect and influence the other scale, they overlap one another in various manners, therefore the separation is not rigid. The structure assembles what is relevant for the construction of the central argument and relates to the present debate about the port area. The structure of this particular research constitutes a frame that supports ideas and concepts to be discussed. At a large scale, we observe that sea ports have changed, and will continue to evolve, containers require new connections to the hinterland, and intermodal platforms have forced sea ports to redefine their location. This has implications in the regional planning strategies. In Portugal, the Port of SetĂşbal is building the largest container terminal of the country, and Sines attracted a considerable amount of foreign investment for the construction of a new 56

container terminal. Both ports are expanding while the port of Lisbon has clearly defined limits and no possibility of expansion after the failure to implement the expansion plans presented in the 1980s. The inexistence of intermodal platforms, which must be adjacent to the port area, and the impossibility to expand the terminals have consequences that are inevitable. All the major ports in Portugal have decreased their activities. The problem is quite complex since Portuguese Port Authorities have been operating individually waiting for a central body that is expected to coordinate all the Port Authorities, in the footsteps of the Spanish model. It is uncertain what the Port Authority of Lisbon will do because at the moment they are more interested in the urban development of the land under their jurisdiction than in dealing with port related activities. Although they may act as urban developers, they cannot sell the land under their jurisdiction since it is public property.

At the scale of the city in terms of urban design, we find cities claiming the port areas for their benefit. While industrial infrastructures turn into urban areas, new questions are raised. The waterfront development plan for Lisbon (POZOR) was the early beginning of a postindustrial port transformation that never went through. In the POZOR there are already many guidelines about the future relations between city and port. In search for answers we will analyse two case studies of port cities: Barcelona and San Francisco. Both cities have transformed and expanded their ports and adapted them to major investments; and this happened because they managed to solve the conflict between administrative powers acting on the waterfront, and thus achieved a successful transition for their port areas. Each case is different as we will further discuss, but it is relevant to look into the differences of each solution in their differences and how they managed to improve the relationship between port and city. This way, confronting the Lisbon situation with successful examples one may acquire a new perspective in order to foresee possible solutions.

There was a problem common to several cities: they had to eliminate the urban ‘cut effect’, a barrier formed by a railway and/or a road built along the port area, which has developed enormously throughout the 20th century. Any future plan positioned on a contemporary perspective without understanding the context, that is to say the city/water frontier overlapped with landfill, is condemned to fail. The case of Boston, which is always mentioned in every reference studies about waterfronts, was solved through an open dialogue between the Port Authority and the Town Hall; the result of this was their new buildings bordering the water and reinvention of the city relation with the port area covering 57

the old harbour. How this fruitful dialogue is established and who is involved in it varies from city to city.

At the detail scale, the smallest one, we should consider the user as an individual or as groups and their relation to the object of architecture and to public space. Lisbon topographical conditions allowed for city projects where landscape architecture merges with architecture and it becomes hard to separate the two. In other port cities, designers have proposed constructions that implied the manipulation of the topographic conditions to create surfaces with a new morphology. At the landfill there are now opportunities to reinvent a spatial grid influenced by the city. Waterfront projects have been offering a cultural and social reconnection with the river, thus reuniting the human element of the city with the natural one, the river itself. It is a rare opportunity for the city to reestablish a broken link. In the case of Lisbon, the area of study was the core of the city because its center was located along the waterfront until the 1900s. The examples further discussed will address issues of cultural identity, including urban design and history, social science and artistic interventions, architecture and public space.

Macro Scale

Does Lisbon need a container terminal?


Port mutations


Hinterland connections


From transhipment to containerization



1. Linear port enclosing the city, the land under the jurisdiction of the Port Authority is shown in black

2. Port Authority Master plan (detail), titled Future of the Port of Lisbon; it includes the designed container terminal at Trafaria.


Does Lisbon need a container terminal?

Containers and the large cargo ships that carry them are becoming a global phenomenon that has consequences in the contemporary organization of industrial ports. The increasing containerisation and the constant need to lower costs to maintain competitiveness have changed ports throughout the world. During the 70s and 80s ports began to face the need for multimodal platforms. Those platforms require a specific geometry, larger surfaces, and proper accessibility; they should also be preferably located near the port area. The project to build the Trafaria Container Terminal (plate 2) was developed and presented by the Port Authority of Lisbon at the time, but it was put aside. The expansion to the south bank never happened, and consequently the port activity was kept in the same location, near the old town. Most cities have been dealing with the transformation of port areas because they became available, in opposition to what happened in Lisbon. This is the main reason why port cities throughout North America, Western Europe and Far East Asia began a spectacular transformation through which port areas were reinvented. Old harbour areas were thought to be ideal sites for the new urban developments. The urban waterfront became an international reference. And in many cases it was the last opportunity for port authorities to obtain profitable economic results, while the activity of the port was relocated elsewhere.

Some port operators believe that Santos and Alcântara Terminals will remain competitive for another ten years, but other experts argue that keeping them operational is to prolong an artificial situation that is no longer viable. In practice, the Port of Lisbon has lost its leading position in the Iberian Peninsula in the 1970s to become a port struggling with big difficulties. In 2003 it registered less traffic than the Port of La Coruña that is a secondary Spanish Port. The Port Authority of Lisbon (APL) has developed a couple of project-finance including residential, commercial and office buildings. These projects would generate revenues allowing the construction of infrastructures, namely better access ways.1

Accessibility is one of the main struggles of the Port of Lisbon as the city behind it blocks the connection with trucks and trains. In 1996, in order to keep the port competitiveness, the 1

“Intervenções na zona ribeirinha” – projects for Matinha/Cabo Ruivo and Pedrouços areas are available at the Port Authority Project Department. Those projects have been widely publicized in the 1995 presentation of the Lisbon waterfront plan. The financial strategy has been briefly described on several newspapers.


Port Authority has invested in the Alcântara/Santos area, which was the first deepwater container terminal in Portugal. Its restrictive road/railway accesses, however, strongly limit the expansion of its container shipping activity. The Port of Lisbon has an adequate railway hinterland connection at Poço do Bispo container terminal, but the Alcântara terminal faces an ambiguous future. Alcântara is a concession hold by the Liscont Co. who is facing difficulties to carry out their operations. After the 2003 summer strikes organized by the truck drivers in protest against the long hours they had to wait for loading and unloading, the concessionaire advocates the land reclamation of the Alcântara dock together with the construction of an adequate hinterland facility as a solution to the problem.

Container operators are efficiency-oriented when making their decisions, and they observe that industrial areas require special infrastructures in which operational mechanisms determine functional procedures. From the technical perspective, on a cargo terminal good solutions lead to good results. But the logistics of intermodal operations cannot skip a good concept-design to allow for a good organization. Besides there is also a socio-cultural component involved in the changes that are taking place in ports, one that can have an impact in the city life as well. Wilson (2000, 33) hints to the situation ‘Communities of dockside professionals lost their monopoly of maritime exchanges to the profit of worldwide operators not tied to any home port.’ Besides this new global order, in the case of Lisbon the local conflicts between the Port Authority and the surrounding municipalities accelerated the loss of competitiveness in the maritime industry.

Port Mutations

Since 1907 the Port of Lisbon Authority (APL) has administered a busy port that was the leading port of the Iberian Peninsula for some years. The harbour of Lisbon offers extraordinary natural conditions and is placed at a strategic geographic location in Europe. The creation of the Port Authority, like in other European cities, rose from the need to implement an autonomous body to administrate the new territory as well as the industrial activity. It was necessary and convenient to have an independent institution operating and controlling the port area, which meant autonomous administrative power to control the works, development and exploitation of the new port. The industrial port, which in the beginning displayed specific characteristics, had to be constantly adapted to new


requirements (warehousing space, transportation, processing plants, new machines). In the 1980s the need for deep waters was a worldwide reality, a spectacular increase in the size and draught of ships has made many older ports unusable. In the study carried out by the Port Authority of Lisbon it has been proposed to build the new terminal at Trafaria (Almada municipality) on the left bank of the river (Cabral, 1997, 72), facing Lisbon, as a response to the need for deeper waters and to new demands imposed by container terminal traffic. The choice of this new location was highly criticized by the public opinion, but mostly by the Almada municipality, that revealed a conservative position and a lack of global comprehension of the actual problem in regard of maritime ports. After the failure to build the Trafaria container terminal (with approximately 500 hectares), the APL invested in Alcantâra and Santa Apolónia, with an area of 12 hectares (plate 3) and 16 hectares respectively.

The Port Authority autonomy and arguments were not enough to convince the Almada municipality about the importance of upgrading and expanding the port facilities. If the creation of the industrial port was a national issue, the creation of a container terminal was not. Therefore the port of Lisbon lost an opportunity to develop and its competitiveness was seriously backfired. Consequently, inadequate areas were adapted to containerization affecting the city’s life, in particular the relation between the landfill areas occupied by the port and the city that remain deprived of the Tagus. So, there is a story behind things to enhance the human element of a process that cannot be determined by productivity standards alone. Ramesar (2001, 17) note that ‘Many times we think of urbanism as being a completely free creative process. But urbanism, planning, urban design and public art are activities rooted in the memory, the territory and the Law. There are rights and duties about the land. There are geographic and social memories embedded in the territory. Persistence and preexistences, that determine planning and urban design.’ While analysing the Lisbon municipality and the APL politics for the waterfront, after the failure to partially relocate the port to Trafaria, Craveiro (1997, 50) said that ‘Due to port strategy changes, and to the pressure of the resulting environmental impact on public opinion, the strictly physical expansion plan of the port for the south bank was put aside. Then it became necessary to look for an integrated plan adapted to our maritime trade needs and to the new transport technologies. These together with the new specialized exploitation dynamics of the port required less space to be used.’ 62

3. Aerial photograph of the industrial port at Santos/Alcântara during the 1970s, before the Alcântara container terminal was built with a landfill to reach deeper waters

Hinterland Connections

Since containers transformed the port activity, and larger ships require deeper waters, the Lisbon Port Authority is struggling to keep high levels of activity without success. Containerisation requires deep water and an efficient connection with hinterland. ‘Thus the ratio between the length of a berth and the amount of back-up land needed for cargo has changed dramatically; while one or two-hectare terminals had to be replaced by facilities of 10-15 hectares and more.’ (Hall, 1993, 13). The container system requires less physical space at the port, and simultaneously a good connection with railway lines and roads, the so-called hinterland. At the same time intermodal platforms are created to link different types of means of transport. APL faced an increasing problem with this interconnection. Confined between a highly congested city and 63

4. Project for the Iberian Network of High Speed Trains; the red lines indicate transportation routes.

the river, the port efficiency was deteriorating, and one possibility was to invest elsewhere. A new strategy is required, as Felicio (2003, 19), an expert in transportation engineering, explains: ‘From the paradigm based on estate we moved to the flux based paradigm. This means that in the traditional or classical society wealth was expressed in terms of owning estate in whatever form it could assume. In nowadays society wealth manifests itself in the ability to influence the mobility or traffic centers and to control the flux of goods, money, knowledge, etc.’

After the Iberian Meeting in 2003 where the future implementation of the railway lines of the TGV for passengers and merchandises was discussed, the Port of Setúbal and the Port Sines emerged as the national ports to beneficiate from the construction of the new railway lines (plate 4). This is due mainly to one reason: both ports have the possibility to develop because they can make use of large surfaces that are available next to the port area, and thus will be able to fulfil contemporary needs. They have the flexibility to expand while the Port of Lisbon is compressed between the river and the city. Both ports (Setúbal and Sines) are 64

investing in container terminals. Setúbal is carrying out projects financed by Portuguese funds, mainly the ones made available by the central government; by contrast, Sines also managed to engage foreign investors in its expansion. The Port of Singapore has invested in the creation of the Sines Container Terminal (SCT). The case of Sines is particularly interesting, since it was able to attract foreign investor to pay for the construction of the STC and to equip it with advanced information technology, skilled and highly-trained manpower, state-of-the-art container-handling equipment, since all of this will give the new infrastructure a competitive edge. Sines emerges as the number one national port, as far as the volume of cargo handled is concerned, and because it is becoming also a transhipment hub – which could serve the hinterland of the Iberian Peninsula and of Continental Europe – it is successful in finding partnerships for major container terminal investments.

The port of Lisbon has a container terminal at Alcantâra, but it is currently struggling with a considerable lack of space to improve its operation conditions, and its berthing areas are not suitable for very large container vessels. The Alcântara terminal requires also a new road/rail intersection to be competitive. There is a proposal to extend the terminal wharf for 18 meters through land reclamation. International investors are not interested in the limited old port of Lisbon which once was, however, the largest Portuguese port. As it is explained by the president of APL, one third of the port’s total revenues are coming from rented spaces, and the port of Lisbon ‘has become increasingly dependant on funds granted by the European Union’(Cabral, 1997, 72) to carry out its investments in order to improve and readapt the port. We should note that the activity of the port does not vanish, it moves to other places, to new ports that offer better conditions for container terminals. Located 50 km south of Lisbon the Port of Setúbal will continue to expand, and the Port of Sines located at 120 km south of Lisbon is now the fast growing port in the country.

From Transhipment to Container Terminal

The exploitation of the port of Sines started in 1973. It has been described as the perfect place: ‘It is well located geographically, with excellent sea features, which make this port one of the few in the world where dredging is not necessary. Thus Sines allowed the installation of an harbor that could be operated at low maintenance costs’ (Viegas, 2002, 10). The oil crisis of the 70s and the 1974 Portuguese revolution slowed down the 65

development of the port. These events, as analysed by Lurdes Ferreira (2002), “had the same role in the failure of the Sines project launching as the lack of proper accessibility might have in cutting short new development in the area.. (…) Even so, the Administração do Porto de Sines (APS) still expects to reach, in 2010, higher profitability levels than the ones presently registered in Barcelona, Algeciras, Hamburg and even Antwerp. The APS believes the future concession of terminal XXI to the Port of Singapore Authority will boost profitability. The APS emphasizes its expectation that the partnership with one of the leading world operators of cargo containers will attract Iberian hinterland operations and not just transhipping.’

The lack of limitations in the maritime accesses has exceptionally low time rates of ships entry/mooring and sailing/departure (plate5). The fact that there is no urban pressure and no relevant environmental limitations is crucial for the future growth and development of port facilities and inter-modal platforms. The Port Authority (APS, 2002) describes Sines as having good conditions for port expansion, and to gain vast landfill areas, with secured direct access to railway and road networks.”These advantages offered by the port of Sines have become extremely attractive for Singapore to invest widely in the construction of the Terminal XXI.

Initially established as a port for energetic resources, ‘the high annual rates of cargo shipment transformed the Port of Sines in the leading national port in terms of freight tonnage per year’ (APS, 2003). About 75% of the essential energy resources are conveyed through Sines, and this percentage is expected to rise with the installation of the Liquefied Natural Gas terminal which started do be operated in 2003. But compared to other major Portuguese ports Sines has never been considered a real competitor. Only recently the partnership with the Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) brought the necessary financial support that allowed for the creation of a container terminal. ‘In the allocation contract dated from 1999, signed with the Sines, Terminais de Contentores, SA., whose main shareholder is the PSA – Corporation Limited, it is established that this Corporation will be responsible for the construction of Infrastructures, Superstructures and Equipments in four periods, amounting to 227 million dollars’ (APS, 2003). The first period is due March 2003 when the first container terminal will be finished. Operating in the Far East, PSA understood the


5. Town and port of Sines. Large areas are free and available for the future expansion of the port.

potential of Sines for transshipping. Large ships (6.000 to 8.000 TEU) come from Asia and transfer containers to smaller vessels (2.000 to 4.000 TEU) that sail to other European ports. Considering its strategic geographical location in Europe, Sines will be an important gate for this operation.

The scene is now set for Sines to become an inter-modal platform (plate 6) at the crossroads of the world major maritime trade lanes – the PSA acknowledged the importance of transshipment as a springboard to leap the hinterland traffic. The PSA realized also the potential for Iberian hinterland to rank Sines as the main port of the Iberian Peninsula for intercontinental operations, as well as to obtain part of the inter-European market which now amounts to about 70%-80% of the Portuguese ports global traffic. Finally, both port authorities agreed upon the need to work together to conciliate their views about the effect on the hinterland that would result from the investment on railway and road accessibility. Ruy Cravo (2003) advocates the use of two different railway networks: one for passenger 67

trains and another one for freight trains. Nevertheless he concedes that in certain areas of Portugal, such as in Alentejo, it can be suitable that a high speed railway running between Sines and Évora serves the two railroad transport segments, and then that line would connect with the Lisbon-Madrid one. Cravo, who is an expert in TGV railway lines, argues that ‘goods shipped from Portuguese ports must reach the center of Europe in 48 hours, because goods unloaded from ships in Rotterdam or in other ports of the North Sea take less than 24 hours to arrive in central Germany. So we must reach those destinations in the same delay of time, and that is why we need a high speed railroad’. The most important route would be to Évora and Beja, as well as the railway to Madrid via Évora, and to Lisbon via the railway line recently constructed under the bridge (Ponte 25 de Abril) over the Tagus river. PSA expects that the containers will be delivered by train in Lisbon in a couple of hours and within ten hours in Madrid. The competition between different Port Authorities has been present since their creation. In 2003 the central government created a new body that is expected to coordinate all Portuguese ports and define strategic investment plans.

6 a. Drawing shows the connection between motorway, railway line and the container Terminal XX


Port authorities have been autonomous entities since their creation, but might have their future authonomy limited under this new policy of governmental coordination. It is uncertain how much and how fast that may change the present situation, but the organization Portos de Portugal does not include the relations between city and port in its studies. The efficiency, the profitability and the growth of the port activity are in the centre of such studies, and there is not a cross reference to the implications of changes in the urban environment.

6 b. Three dimensional scheme of the intermodal platform at the container terminal , Pedro R. Garcia, 2003


Urban Scale

Pozor – Lisbon waterfront development plan


A vanishing port


The post-Pozor experience


Influence of administrative powers

79 70

7. Drawing of POZOR urban development between the railway line and the Alcântara Dock. The dashed line represents the connection between the Alcântara Container Terminal and the hinterland.

Pozor – Lisbon waterfront development plan

In 1994, the Port Authority of Lisbon (APL) submitted for public discussion a new plan for the industrial port – Plano do Ordenamento do Porto de Lisboa (Port of Lisbon waterfront plan), that became known as POZOR. It presented strategies to attract partners for financial investment and it proposed a major urban development for the port area with the creation of new buildings organized within a new urban design frame (plate 7). The plan proposed the construction of new buildings in 450 000 m2 of the area Stº Amaro- Alcântara, and in 160 000 m2 of the area called Rocha Conde D’Óbidos – Santos; additionally, the Multi Development Corporation International (MCDI) was supposed to build in a 82 000 m2 area at Cais do Sodré . The plan indicates specific building areas, and classifies them in four groups: buildings that are to be kept without any transformation; the ones to be demolished; the buildings to be recovered (for new uses), and the ones to be renovated (maintaining their previous use). The plan also designates areas that would be subject to overall plans. Oddly enough, the presentation of a plan for public discussion was a breakthrough in Portuguese 71

urban planning tradition, considering that most of the country’s urban plans usually attract criticism only when the construction is already underway. In the eyes of the citizens the plan represented an instrument to alter the city in a way that that would affect them physically and emotionally. And the Port Authority became aware of being faced with a delicate situation on its hands. The public response was the Anti-Pozor Committee2. Being a rather important area for the city itself, the transformation of the port area could be jeopardized by the execution of POZOR. Some opinion makers rejected the plan, but did not present any alternative. The proposal (POZOR) has failed in gaining the acceptance of the public opinion, and at the time several personalities have also shown their disagreement through the media. The first question one is most likely to put is: Why was this first plan for the waterfront (carefully prepared by Portuguese and English architects) so heavily criticized? There are a couple of critical aspects with the plan. Firstly, the plan only considered the area under the Port Authority jurisdiction and excluded the relation of the city with the port. It was oriented for short term urban development on the port area, and did not contain any ideas for the long term urban improvement of the port-city relation. It created a conflict between the community that needed new equipments and the institutions that wanted to expand their facilities. The port land was seen by them as an opportunity to improve their way of life of the former and the present condition of the latter. The needs of the neighborhoods that are located along the port area were not considered within the plan. Secondly, the physical barrier between city and port was not taken in account. The railway line reinforces the frontier that separates city and port. Thirdly, the high density of new buildings to be built in the port area would shut the view of the river from the city. One of the arguments of this work is that the production of a new plan by the Port Authority alone would be unable to propose solutions that could become feasible. To test the hypothesis that a future plan (or plans) should instead launch the bases for a new frame of thinking it is important to reevaluate the problems of POZOR. In fact, the plan was thought in a small scale and only the port area has been considered; it did not address the city in a large scale. The non-implementation of the POZOR plan left a “blank� and a solution to the problem was postponed; thus the question remains: what to do along the waterfront? How should the transformation of the port area be addressed? Should the city discuss it and participate in the decisions that are to be taken? Should the Port Authority continue to lead the discussion? Or 2

Miguel Sousa Tavares headed the public campaign against the Project and wrote several articles about consequences of the implementation of pozor.


this should be an effort made by the community using institutional powers in order to carry out the found solutions to end the present “divorce” between city and port. The Pozor – that was submitted by Ministério do Mar for the zonning and planning of Lisbon waterfront – includes the identification of spots where to build pedestrian passageways intended to be safe, animated and well equipped, a ‘living image’ of high quality of life for the people who will use them. Those walkways link the city to the river, allowing the crossing over the existing railway/road network. The walkways link the city to the river, but they are far from being the ideal solution. Nevertheless it has been considered to be the feasible one, since it is not possible to totally or partially lower down neither the railway line nor the roads – as many would prefer. The railway line and the road are the main physical barriers preventing the city to relate with the river; they work as an invisible screen that keeps all the active urban life from “diving” into the river and “spreading” over the waterfront. It is clearly explained in POZOR that APL can not intervene for two reasons: they do not fall under the APL geographic area of jurisdiction, and the financial investments required would be so big that only a national wide investing operation could support the works. Actually, the railway line and the roads are administered by the Portuguese Railway Co. and the Municipality of the City of Lisbon. The situation is extremely complex once it involves a great deal of participants to change the current urban problem. All these independent powers have been working separately. Around the beginning of the 90s the Port Authority of Lisbon prepared a number of technical, economical and financial studies that allowed it to conclude that there were some areas in the port that could become available for other uses; consequently, it was understood that the land development would be a source of revenues instead of mainly exploring the port activity.

The land and buildings under the APL jurisdiction, however, are public domain, so they could not be sold which discouraged private investment. The solution found by APL was to rent their real estate properties. This set of things is analysed by Wilson (2001, 34) who says that ‘Lisbon, where port and city are closely imbricated, presents an unusual case: there the Port Authority has acted as the developer.’


8. Photograph of POZOR model corresponding to the city centre. It shows the conversion of one container terminal at Santos as well as the Alc창ntara Container Terminal.


The projects submitted in the first version of POZOR for constructing office buildings and luxury housing (plate 8) would contribute for the urban development to attract investments that were

considered as an additional means to finance most necessary hinterland

connections at Alcântara and the proposed Trafaria container terminal. The urban projects would have socio-cultural implications, such as ‘designing’ a new urban image of fancy buildings and trendy condominiums. APL reveals quite a contradictory position: on the one hand, it does not have the means to execute the urban development projects at the port area and thus improve the city-port relation; on the other hand they effectively acted on their own which is not enough in the context of the city-port relation because it involves a great deal of complexity.

Port Authorities are governmental institutions that were created to operate the activity of the ports. Back in the 1900s most European countries created special laws and regulations for port authorities, but they are being reviewed and questioned in view of the changes that are taking place in the maritime industry. For instance, in Italy a new law enforced in 1994 separated the programming and control of the port activity that remained under the Port Authorities from the direct operation of the port activities that are now in the hands of private concessionaire companies. (Bruttomesso, 1997, 122) In fact, the value of the land on the waterfronts attracts economic agents which act as real estate developers that “realized” the opportunity to gain huge profits. Lisbon is no exception to this. Since the disclosure of POZOR, the citizens opinion revealed a contemporary understanding of the city as an “organism” requiring a holistic critical thought. To work independently in a small area may cause a revolution, and Modernist architects have dreamed of it. The complexity of historic cities requires a more Post-Modern reflexion of the problems – one that would include a number of factors and would not discard the complexity of urban waterfronts. Today’s architects claim evolution, and not a revolution that is most likely to create additional ruptures and new problems.

In fact, manifesting his opposition against sudden ruptures Bruttomesso (1997, 123) says the equipment, such as wharves, cranes, and landfill evoke a time that has passed may be maintained in the present and also take part in the future of the ongoing evolutionary process. This heritage, now useless for the port, may generate great wealth for the city. Moreover users are expressing a desire to keep the traces of the industrial port in most waterfront urban developments. 75

A Vanishing Port

According to Craveiro (1997) the city wished to re-gain the river and preserve the port, integrating in its present day heritage some remembrances of the port activity. The ambiguity of the POZOR is probably expressed by the multiplicity of readings. Some discuss technical issues while others address the importance of public space, and some give more importance to questions related with accessibility. The document raised deep and controversial points of view. On one hand, the Port Authority claimed an evolution through which part of their land could be integrated in the city. On the other hand, new strategic areas were required for new intermodal platforms. These are located at the crossroads where several means of transport and distribution meet and are forced to use the existing urban network.

Under the title “City and port – always a difficult marriage”, a couple of sociologists give us a short narrative of the port of Lisbon evolution: “There is a period during which the city grew more apart of its waterfront than ever before. That period corresponds to the development brought about by industrialization which caused a considerable increase of the port activity” (Ferreira, 1999, 22).

Frequently called the “new dynamics of the port

activity”, the industrial activity actually deteriorates urban life. Port and city have to deal with a more efficient interconnection. “The main purpose is to designate areas to be linked to the hinterland, preventing the development of more industrial areas and numerous warehouses, and the proliferation of transportation companies that lack the basic accessibility and infra-structures. These industrial areas usually end up surrounded and strangled by urban areas, thus having a negative impact on traffic, the environment and on quality of life of both people and companies, with immediate consequences measurable in the low productivity indicators” (Soares, 2002, 1).

The intervention strategy now proposed by the Port Authority addresses key concepts such as “multi-use (of port areas), flexibility (solutions and temporary use of areas with residual value for the port), agreement (between the city and the port in the definition of objectives and solutions, and solving the problem of their common interfaces), and cooperation (between entities, in conflict management and on-going management) (Cabral, Natércia, 1997, 69).” The multidisciplinary strategy did not achieve positive results and the Port Authority has acted independently to bring gradual changes into its own future. The process 76

of transformation of industrial ports is a phenomenon occurring all over the world. Europeans cities have dealt with the creation of industrial ports from the 1870s to the 90s and they have been facing their “death” since the 1970s.

The Post Pozor Experience

Before POZOR was submitted there were no signs of an intention to occupy this area with huge parking lots. In fact, the POZOR plan proposed to expanded the existing parking places from 1150 to 6900 in the port area, but strangely enough although the plan was not implemented the parking lots have been spreading all over. The Port Authority rent its buildings to restaurants and night clubs accessible by car, and the transit moves around the rail/road barrier. People cannot walk to the port area so they must drive there. Making parking space available is a pragmatic solution to avoid conflicts with their tenants. The Port Authority is shifting away from its 1994 strategic plan as it could not reach an agreement with the other institutions involved, and did not get the public support. The understanding that the land of the port area is to remain of public domain is the leading strategy embedded in the new plans. However Correia (1997, 121), Portuguese partner of the author of POZOR, argues that the plan has contributed to return “the river back to the people of Lisbon, and at the same time helped to ensure that questions of city planning and urbanism in general are discussed by a broad range of people, even if the debate has not always been conducted the clearsightedness and discernment which the city itself deserves.” POZOR final outcome at Doca de Santo Amaro was and still is cherished by the Lisbon residents who have chosen the riverside area as the city gathering lounge. It has always been the centre, the core of the city where most activities took place. However, since the creation of the industrial port the ‘barrier’, that still isolates the waterfront, has been installed.

The president of the Port Authority at the time summarized the philosophy of the strategy by comparing Lisbon with the waterfront model found in Québec. Natércia Cabral (1997, 75) explains that “In result of the ‘lobbying’ of the local population, the Canadian government designated a Consultative Committee to analyse the waterfront renovation. In his report the Committee, inverting the philosophy followed till then, stipulated that: 77


the area should remain a public space;


being a maritime port, its function should be pursued;


the planning should respect the historical features and prominence should be given to the architectonic heritage;


the visual-field should be preserved free from obstructions both towards the river and the city;


the whole project should blend in with the natural landscape and the urban environment;


the site economic profitability should stem from a series of factors, and those factors could no be limited only to commercial value or to tax revenues.�

Influence of the Administrative Powers

The profound changes in the transportation system brought new opportunities to gradually adapt the port area. Opinions expressed by different entities revealed contradictory views of the problem at the port area and about the new possibilities offered by improvement of the city-port relationship. Each one of the intervening parties, such as the municipalities of the cities around the estuary, private investors, governmental institutions, environmentalists, etc. claimed their own interest in the port. But it was the Port Authority who commissioned a new plan. The Port Authority has been conditioning and maintaining its territories away

from speculation and expectations of the real estate developers, as it was commented by the consultant architect Alcino Soutinho (1999, 99) who believes that “when the time comes for the Port Authority to cease their administration over the port area, the land will be sold to developers by municipalities in a difficult financial situation.� Soutinho refers the importance of the city connections to the water, of re-establishing the broken link (plate 9 and 10). One of the aspects to be taken in consideration in his view, was the necessity to increase the number of connections linking the city to the outskirts, which are the riverside itself, promoting walkways for people to cross the railway barrier. After years of involvement with the process, he accepted the incapacity to generate a global vision in order to coordinate the efforts of all the parts involved towards the same aim. APL acted by itself and did not consider the complexity of the whole process of urban regeneration. As Costa (2002, 35) points it out 78

“the Lisbon Port Authority, public transportation companies, regional coordination administration, and others, in order to generate compromises and to give to the plan an operative character, the Administration adopted (and still adopts) and isolated perspective, against the other urban actors, unacceptable in town planning and which conducts to the ineffectiveness of any proposal.” The problems caused by the lack of coordination and dialogue between the entities were pushing the city to an artificial situation. Each entity worked separately, searching for immediate solutions without a holistic idea of the city-port interaction. There are no common goals and each of the urban agents involved is not engaged in cooperating. The lack of dialogue ruins any effort to improve the present situation. This is not exclusive

9. View of railway/road barrier at Santos area in its present form (causing the ‘cut off effect’)

10. Railway line at upper level – a possible alternative to eliminate 3km of the existing barrier.


of the Lisbon port area. Boeri describes Italy’s harbor areas with similar conditions. He suggest that a new perspective, a broader vision including both city and port is required when dealing with the waterfront. In an attempt to see it as a whole and not in pieces Boeri (2000, 69) explains that waterfronts “(…)are not simply an ultimate ramification of the city towards the sea, or a waterfront, but more an intermediate zone that maintains specific relationships with the different sceneries which they blend into: those of the sea and the city. The movement of passengers and cargo animates their wharves, which are huge open spaces given over to flow. In fact, it is this fluidity that determines their central position”.

9. (cont.)

10. (cont.)


In Lisbon the waterfront has been the very hub of the city, teeming with activity. The industrial port transformed it. But the city has a physical memory traceable in the urban fabric. From a direct and physical relation with the water the city has evolved to a contemplative, gaze perched on the hills. The port area plays an important role for the citizens, and yet the divorce between city and port has been increasing in the last years. In several interviews that have been made after the failure to implement POZOR at the central part of Lisbon, and as quoted by Castro (1997, 94) “the opinions expressed by 38% of the interviewed people defend that the waterfront must not be exclusively administered by only one entity, and the management of the area should be shared by the APL and the CML (Lisbon Municipality). About 24% of the inquired considers that all entities (CML, APL, central government, private entities, other public entities, etc.) may act in a coordinate way, in different occasions, in order to raise the opportunities offered by the area and to increase its profitability.” These inquiries confirm that the common citizen perception of the POZOR is adequate, although he or she does not know the mechanisms of power and how they operate over the territory. A significant percentage pointed out the problems caused by the ‘exclusivity’. The inquire reveals the necessity of a strong coordination to promote behaviours of ‘inclusivity’.3 Cities can be compared to living organisms. One can analyse their behaviour but may never predict all of their next moves. Cities are coordinated by separate organs and they tend to work independently; on the waterfront each of these organs are acting in a isolated manner as if they didn’t belong to the same body. The lack of coordination between each organ leads to a waste of energy, in which a great deal of time and effort is spent in a relationship of misunderstanding. Unlike living organisms that constantly develop a selfhealing behaviour, the city at the waterfront suffers and seems incapable to improve its present dysfunctional relationship. If each ‘organ’ worked together and played its specific role the entire city would benefit from it. At the present, the situation in Lisbon where the different institutions act only upon the ‘symptoms’ which deteriorates ‘health’ of the city as a whole. If the common citizen, who is the user of the urban space, could be compared to a cell, than each cell feels the negative effect of a suffering body. So is the situation of Lisbon waterfront, one in which city and port are involved in a painful relationship.


The Public Art Observatory organized an international conference in Lisbon, hold in 2002 under the title “Inclusivity, a Challenge For Public Art And Urban Design” where the subject of cross dialogue between urban agents under the influence of artistic events was extensively discussed.


Detail Scale

City expansion


The image


Beyond the image


City port relation



11. Waterfront project for the area of Cais do SodrĂŠ, by Luis Gravata Filipe (1990)

12. This project proposes an urban continuity between the industrial port landfill and the pre-existing city borderline.


City Expansion

In 1988 the Architects’ Association organized an open Competition for Ideas concerning the waterfront of Lisbon. In the end, one of the awards was given to Luis Gravata Filipe who proposed the renovation of the Cais do Sodré railway station and the extension of the urban environment with mixed uses involving offices, retail shops, restaurants, art galleries, etc.4 Afterwards Filipe was commissioned by the Port Authority a more detail study for the site between Sta. Apolónia and Santos. His proposal was exclusively aimed for the land under the Port Authority jurisdiction. It is interesting to note that most of the area selected to be the object of the project was actually the site where the industrial port had never been constructed (plate 11). The city-port relation was reinvented in Filipe’s proposal through a new urban design, that would also modify the city interaction with the river precisely where it was never interrupted, since the site was not transformed by land reclamation.

The city of Lisbon has discussed the subject of the waterfront through decades and the aforesaid competition set a new frame of possibilities since there were no legal restraints and the purpose was to open up the discussion. The proposals challenged the existing situation and intuitively presented new possible scenarios for the Lisbon waterfront. Below is a detail of a project where Cais do Sodré/Aterro da Boavista was considered without barriers and under the control of the same institution. The project does not regard the division of the territory by several bodies that have administrative power over it, in this case the Municipality, the Port Authority and the Railway Company. Instead, it presented a proposal that took for granted the city as one entity, one body that searches for the improvement of its deteriorated relation to the water (plate 12).

The Image

Most authors that expressed their ideas about the POZOR did not dig in the complexity of the problems between city and port but remained focused on the visual aspect of the transformation. The city image reflected upon the water can be called the ‘face of the city’, 4

Gravata Filipe won Prémio Frente Ribeirinha de Santos/ sta Apolónia – Prémio Município de Lisboa.


and the discussion tended to get stuck in the visual impact of the transformation. The image of the city, however, is not a still pictures but it is more like an ever changing movie. The creation of the industrial port has brought an idea of Modernity to the waterfront along the medieval city. Some industrial buildings have been tore down, and other ones have been transformed due to technical requirements of the port activity. Hence, for decades it was difficult to grasp the constant mutations in volume and shapes of the port area. Even so the urban cultural identity became fused into the image of the industrial port. The theme of ‘the waterfront image and urban culture’ is addressed by Nadia Fava (2002, 87), a Catalan scholar who argues that ‘In the waterfront there are local, regional, and global processes involved and it is interesting to realize which of these factors most affect the construction of the city façade, considering that the image of the façade is something shown in order to “sell”, to improve the city in relation with other port cities. The façade is the identity of the city (local aspect) and what the city wants to show to other cities (global aspect).’ The seven hills of Lisbon construct an image that is deeply rooted in the citizens memory. The hills present a constructed environment that gently adapted to their topography thus establishing an intimate atmosphere with the natural features of the landscape (plate 13). At a completely different pace, the creation of the artificial territory of the industrial port represented a sudden rupture that changed the most influent physical limit of the city. The landfill and its industrial buildings and artifacts deeply transformed the image of the city (plate 14).

Beyond the image

Recently there are new voices in the debate on the waterfront that express opinions coming from various disciplines, such as the human sciences, anthropology, sociology and geography. This contribution is extremely positive and it leads to a broader view since the discussion concerning the waterfront is relevant to planners and architects. The debate also becomes more interesting with the use of cross-references and juxtaposition of analyses. Some scholars make use of their own mixed academic backgrounds and give significant contributions to develop critical thought. Remesar (2002, 14), for instance, argues that the waterfronts should be regarded in its metropolitan dimension: 85

13. Photograph taken in the 1850s from the south bank, showing the city before the construction of the industrial port. 14. Photograph from 1990 showing the industrial warehouses (built over landfill) which redefined the city image.

“A powerful fact: waterfront development is the logic for the renewal and regeneration of “inner cities” regarding cities in its metropolitan dimension. The territorial model of the industrial city breaks off an historical physical and symbolic balance between cities and water. Waterfront developments respond to the logic of the emerging informational mode of production and they try to re-construct the balance between city and water with a new physicality and operating from a completely new symbolic order.”

Water cities are claiming their fluvial or maritime edge through waterfront redevelopment projects, but the influence of the process of transformation expands inland in a transversal fashion (plate 15). Many industrial land plots adjacent to port areas register an increasing flow of investments from different sector. The ‘side effects’ of waterfront projects encourage a parallel process of transformation involving the nearby neighbourhoods, so this


increases the investor’s interest in urban regeneration. The process of rehabilitation and restoration attracts a bigger volume of investments which generate more tax revenues that, in many cases, are enough to pay for the required infrastructures at the waterfront development. These infrastructures include facilities of the municipalities, port authorities, railway companies, traffic departments, etc. In the Portuguese case the lack of coordination and exchange of information between institutions has prevented the efficient organization of the processes where they can be managed. Rodrigues ( 1999, 12-13) explains that

“the urban planners have behaved as compliant servants of the prevailing political and economic power, and of the speculative and mercantile interests of the capitalist society (…).Cars are favored over pedestrians. Public spaces are either reduced or transformed into a “leisure” ground and a formal “embellishment” site, usually in absolute disagreement with an ecological perspective. Sewage is planned in technical terms in order to hide waste and to move pollution away from sight. The formal approach of projects, the mechanical systems of road networks, the different processes of water supply and draining and energy distribution, as well as the effluent

15. Composition shows the city separated by a water canal from the area of the Industrial port Pedro R. Garcia e Patrícia Martinez (2003)


treatment, all fall under a short term logic. This logic is intended to solve the symptoms of an unlinked framework that inherently creates problems.”

In Lisbon, the lack of dialogue and cooperation between the intervening bodies also leads to a malfunction of the whole city. There is no common objective, and each body struggles with its own difficulties and reads the potential transformation from an isolated perspective.

In general, few waterfront development projects address the potential of those areas today to face and to experience anew the wild, the natural element, materialized by the water which symbolically expresses the unknown still unpredictable, ‘unleashed’ in spite of all technological progress. The revitalization programming is designed to achieve specific goals and to follow a common ‘vision’, that express the cultural needs of the community. Sieber (1997, 138) approaches the waterfront revitalization from a cultural point of view:

“The waterfront… connects people with three domains: unspoiled nature, an unchanging past, and spontaneous fun and enjoyment. These connections are achieved through three different complexes of redevelopment ideology and practice: (1) environmentalism, (2) history and heritage, and (3) tourism and public celebration, respectively.”

Although Sieber’s observations are accurate for North American cases. What characterizes the Southern European ports, however, is a succession of distinct urban sceneries that ‘betray’ a wide range of functions, and this will eventually promote a more complex discussion, but one that necessarily considers the aforesaid aspects mentioned by Sieber.

Analysing the economic basis of Postmodernism, Harvey (1990, 71) comments: “Speculative land and property development… were dominant forces in the development and construction industry that was a major branch of capital accumulation. Even when contained by planning regulations or oriented around public investments, corporate capital still had a great deal of power. And where corporate capital was in command… to continue that practice of building monuments that soared ever higher as symbols of corporate power.”


City and Port relations

Waterfront projects are often challenged with the flatness and the artificiality of the territory. Some projects expose the landfill adjacent to the city edge, by means of transversal canals. On the flat ground of the landfill, the lack of variation in the topography makes the traffic flow seem a real urban barrier. In order to overcome these barriers, some waterfront projects propose changes in the morphology to shape the landscape, therefore new levels will be offered to go across the barriers (plate 16). The topographic character of each site requires a particular solution in order to adjust to the urban pre-existing features. Any solution, however, is greatly dependent on the width of landfills The architectural quality of port areas is another factor that influences the possible new relations between port and city. Along the port area each site has its own different problems, and solutions are expected to deal both with those particularities and simultaneously with the city as a whole. The permeability of urban port physical limits allows for the use of projects that may generate new relations between city and port.

16. This model shows the role of each of the urban elements and sets them apart: the land of the port area is separated from the city; the streets are extending over the channel; elements in red are pedestrian links located at public spaces existing at the riverside before the industrial port was built; the yellow line represents the road/rail barrier located at a different level.


Each port has its own layout and features, and thus their process of transformation should be quite different from one another. In many cases, the hardest task is to intervene in the most ancient part of the city. The heart of urban areas has a high level of complexity and it carries important significance for the city. Meyer (1999, 30) who has written extensively on the subject, argues that for most cases,

authors emphasize the necessity of learning to deal with modernity and the public realm, but they focus on something else at the same time: namely, the inability of the public realm to function by the grace of the savoir-vivre of free citizens, […]and the simultaneous need for space in which the public realm can exist among optimal conditions and which is recognized as ‘public space’ – space in which the exile and the foreigner may feel equal to others around them and in which no one really notices, or even cares, whether someone is an autochthonous resident or a chance passer-by.

The waterfront is not exclusively oriented by a mono-functional activity, since public space has always served as meeting place, marketplace and traffic space (Gehl, 2001, 12). Any future program for the Lisbon waterfront redevelopment could contain a large spectrum of possible functions mainly oriented for public use. This would be a way to ensure a solid basis for «breeding» and then maintain future port-city ties. Brutomesso (1997, p.122) values the importance of the existing accessibility and argues that “port exploitation of the urban waterfront and the river does not cause a disruption in the relation with the city: accessibility is guaranteed and there is a straight link between urban and port activities.” But in certain cases such a disruption exists and can not be ignored. An example of this are the areas where the POZOR was not implemented, which now display more obstacles for the citizens access to the river than in 1994/95. To cross the road/railway barrier became increasingly difficult, and the port operations are still carried out but they are ‘hidden’ behind fences. Most authors believe that accessibility is a key aspect if waterfronts are to gain a renewed urban quality. (see plate 17) The waterfronts also have the chance to redefine a future environment that may include a part of the ‘lost’ link taken away from them after the construction of industrial ports. And within this process of reinvention they seek to affirm themselves as ‘water cities’.

Cities rely on public spaces more than they do on buildings to claim their urban identity. The contemporary urban citizen, as in the precedent Modern period, is able of reinventing 90

17. Transversal section at the area of Cais do Sodré, shows three stations of public transportation – maritime, railway and underground. In 1994 the project for nearly 8 hectares was commissioned by a public/private partnership involving Municipality, Railway Company, Port Authority and one private investor – Invesfer. The project did not succeed to be implemented.

himself, of putting aside his background, of removing himself from a previous context and of moving into and along a new one. And in this human dynamics cities are an ideal crucible to forge new identities since they are themselves the main physical source of identity for their residents who use a common space to gather, to wonder, to share and exchange, and simply to stare at the landscape. In Lisbon the port area belongs to the public domain as regulated by law, and it is expected to be administered by the Port Authority in accordance with that law.5 Therefore future partnerships with private developers are unlikely to happen under the present regulation. The areas that surround the port are most likely to become the centre of investments in the city, as large surfaces from obsolete industrial facilities become available in the heart of the city. Developers and builders are inviting ‘star architects’ to raise the standards of the public discussion about the waterfront development, as it was pointed out at the AIVP conference in Lisbon: Enticed by the now classic practices of the redevelopment of the waterfronts, the neighbouring urban-port districts are the object of more and more marked attention from urban planners and politicians. The docks and maritime life have awakened the awareness of the inhabitants to the attractiveness of these districts, which only yesterday were the poorest quarters in the city. For the port city, being able to house them in this context of maritime live is a marvellous opportunity to reinforce its centrality. In detail, the transformation around the port area will affect and influence the port city relation and both port and city can beneficiate from the increasing flow of investment.6 5

Artº 5º do Decreto-Lei nº 309/87, de 7 de Agosto,


Tom Fisher, argues that some cities have made enough profit to pay for the improvement of city and port relation just with the investments around the waterfront.


Major governmental facilities, including municipality and public utility services (EDP, GNR, CML) are placed along the port area next to universities and museums. The increasing volume of sea cruises and the necessity to build a new terminal will also influence the future possibilities in the port city relations context. The present discussion should include what type of urban installations can be built on the port area that qualify the public space and remain as public domain. Portuguese scholar Figueira de Sousa ( 2001) argues that ‘cruise terminals are privileged place for establishing port-city relations and in some cases they can also play a double role, as a port infrastructure and as un urban equipment.’ The author says that cruise terminals often ‘generate an important impact in the city and may, in some cases increase the development of urban projects of various dimensions in the surrounding areas.’ At the present Lisbon has three cruise terminals designated Alcântara, Rocha Conde de Óbidos and Jardim do Tabaco; Rocha is the busiest one and it is located next to large surfaces of the former industrial port. The new cruise terminal (see plate 18) is expected to be built at Jardim do Tabaco where the landfill is narrower. The choice of this location for such equipment is controversial. From a strictly functional point of view the city is at a high risk of pressure of traffic, as each cruise requires dozens of tourist buses, taxis, and large areas for parking which do not exist. From the programmatic perspective the last cruise terminals have included commercial and cultural areas to serve both city and port, therefore good public means of transport is also a requirement.

18. Map by Figueira de Sousa shows in red the cruise terminal next to Alfama and Terreiro do Paço.


1. Four different periods of landfill built over river Tagus at different periods of time


1. (cont.) Baixa – light blue, Boavista – dark blue, Industrial Port – light gray, and container terminal – dark gray

Chapter 3 – Estuary of river Tagus and the industrial port

Landfill is artificial by nature


Early Landfill


Conflict of Interests


Organic Growth


Dynamic balance between water and land


The Dream of Modernity


The incomplete Industrial Port





Landfill is artificial by nature

Lisbon is related to its harbor geographically and historically. It has been a water city for centuries, one that grew from the crossroads between land and sea. By the late 1800s an industrial port was built over landfill at Lisbon waterfront. Transportation and warehousing have evolved along the times, and the port of Lisbon, like most ports, adopted the container system. Large rail and road infrastructures were constructed in the landfill, and their traffic gradually increased. The current barrier phenomena is called ‘the cut off effect’. To fully understand the present situation it is necessary to retrace the evolutionary process that took place in the port area. In historic terms the development of the port was not a continuous and linear one: there were a number of plans, visionary and unfinished projects. Cities are a result of strategies, memories, individual visions, collective will and fragments of juxtaposed intentions. Any future transformation of Lisbon will play with the collective memory of passageways, to which historical heritage and even a mystical legacy are attached. And to which we could add at one’s discretion the signs of a virtual and tamed marine experience (Chaline, 1997, 28).

100 Anos do Porto de Lisboa (100 years of the Port of Lisbon) is a book published in 1992 by the Port Authority. The author, the historian António Nabais, writes a brief historical description of the port before the 1890s. Like most contemporary scholars Nabais believes that the creation of industrial port and its major landfill works are the most important moments in the port’s history. As if industrialization had changed the entire life of the city. On the contrary, Victor Matias Ferreira and Alexandra Castro (1999) argue that port cities had a relationship with their waterfronts and the ports activity long before the major changes that occurred during the industrialization. For Lisbon this happened in the turn of the 1900s, but its port has been quite busy since the 15th century. There are descriptions mentioning projects for piers and docks, dragging, regulations and investments. Some projects were driven by specific functional requirements, including military defense and loading systems, other projects denoted a will to create beautiful and monumental sites. They were all aimed at the transformation of the territory near the water edge. 96

1. Above: the Port of Lisbon in 1592 illustration by Hans Stadein Below: two photographs taken during the construction of the industrial port 1900s


2. Lisbon1 in the 1100s

3. Lisbon in the 1100s and 1750s master plan

Early Landfill

During King Manuel I reign, back in the 1500s, the first significant works on the waterfront were carried out: landfills, construction of buildings and new facilities transformed existing infrastructures into an efficient port where loading and unloading, warehousing, control of goods and so on could be easily and safely operated. Around 1502 a large dock was built by paving the beach next to the royal palace, and this provided an important large surface for public use – ‘Para serventia, logro e prol comum da dita cidade’ (Gois, 1567) that is to say for public use and to benefit all citizens. The port became very busy due to the Portuguese trading with regions all over the world. Water became this immense freeway, a linking platform for spiritual and commercial interchange with the outside and distant worlds. There was no deep


‘The shoreline may have altered considerably with the tide, which at Lisbon normally varies between nine and twelve and a half feet. The arm of the Tagus has now been replaced by the central portion of the city’ (David, 2001),1 which was rebuilt accordingly to the Enlightenment plan produced after the 1755 earthquake.


knowledge about foundations on wetlands or reinforced structures for buildings placed over landfill. The town expanded over the river with the construction of an artificial ground weakly supported, which was probably the main reason for it to collapse during the disaster in 1755. Several writers, including Voltaire, mention the earthwake and the subsequent destruction of the city. Meyer (1999, 117) says the city ‘was hit by an earthquake, followed by a 30-meter-high tidal wave that completely inundated the lowlying city center, wiping it from the face of the earth.’ Another author (Hendrick, 1956) describes that ‘an hour later the water of the Tagus river rose in three towering waves spilling over the city. The fires, that were inevitably triggered by the collapse of buildings, burnt for six days. At the end little was left of this city of 250 000 inhabitants which had boasted of being the richest in the west’. According to the descriptions the Lisbon’s holocaust lasted ten minutes. França (1994, 6) who extensively wrote about the event, most of the drawings produced at the time ‘throughout Europe, have no historical reliability’ although there are a couple of significant drawings – one before the event and the other after it - that represent in detail the city of Lisbon. Just before the earthquake a long drawing (20.5m) over 1224 azulejos represents the elevation of the city towards the river – ‘belongs to the Museu Nacional do Azulejo of Lisbon; it originally belonged to a palace of Lisbon, the ancient property of the Count of Tentugal, and can be dated between 1737 and 1740’.

In 1936 historians found the most detailed drawing ever made of Lisbon, in which the elevation of the city was represented.(Dornellas, 1930, 328-9) This drawing shown below is extremely detailed and shows elevations of each building. One can have a photographic vision of the city’s waterfront 12 years after the earthquake, since historians estimated the drawing dates between 1767-1769. It is a drawing composed of 10 pieces, but the 4 pieces representing the central area with the Baixa (downtown) and the castle are missing. The drawing is not dated and its author is unknown (see plate 4). It was probably signed on the missing sheets that would represent the Royal Square – the location where the new Enlightenment plan set up by Marquês do Pombal would be built. It seems that a large number of the city buildings was preserved except for the central area, although some of the descriptions contradict this after earthquake ‘portrait’. The most revealing about this drawing is that Lisbon’s waterfront does not show signs of the disaster. All houses, monasteries and churches and the buildings at the lower level are standing, and the drawing shows their image reflected on the water. 99

4. Sheets II, IV and V show from Rocha C. Ă“bidos through the Santos to Igreja de Santa Catarina.


5. Planta topográfica da zona Marginal de Lisboa de S.José Ribamar até convento dos Grilos.

The first complete plan for Lisbon’s waterfront dates from 1727, and it was commissioned by King D. João V (see plate 5). Although the plan contains very little information, several buildings in it have legends, and the defined connection between land features, buildings and riverfront seems to be the main focus of the drawing. It is the first ‘master plan’, covering an area that extends beyond the city limits and specificly organizes the city relation with the river. Probably there was a will or a necessity to control and organize the existing buildings at the waterfront. The drawing remains an intriguing piece that is interpreted differently among scholars. Some historians speculate that an attempt to regulate the organization of the space between city and water was related with maritime activity. The only subject of this urban scale drawing is the waterfront; it reveals the importance of the riverfront and its centrality to the city life. Rossa (2002, 114) defends that the drawing was a register to formulate the bases for the project produced some years later by Mardel.

In fact, the construction of a pier built on a straight line of 90 meters into the river (Bebiano, 1730) and ‘the construction of a stone pier as far as possible into the river’ (Pereira, 1742) raised questions about who had the access or who had the power to control the accessibility to the water. We do know, however, that public accessibility has been a right granted by law dating back to several centuries both in Portugal and 101

5. (cont.) Tophography of Lisbon Waterfront from S. José Ribamar to Grilos’ Monastery.

Spain (Trapareo, 1994, 11).2 This particular plan was lost for centuries, but remained a reference during the evolution of the port. It was found only in the 1980s. It is currently part of the Collection of the City of Lisbon Museum. A second master plan for the waterfront of Lisbon was designed by Carlos Mardel, an engineer who developed a remarkable plan considered to be outstanding for the European standards at the time (Santana and Sucena, 1994, 726). It presented a long promenade providing public access along the coast, and stretching from the main square to the Alcântara area. The second plan was elaborated in the 1750s and according to Loureiro (1907) just a couple of decades after the first one. Some of the ideas expressed in the first drawing are present and probably influenced the second project. Mardel’s plan proposed a continuous strip of landfill along the waterfront, as well as a new avenue with buildings that would transform the image of the city. This plan was produced for King D. José, and it was named Projecto do Cais Novo de Belém ao Cais de Santarém the legend says A- Streets, B- Canals, C- houses that may be built. This plan was never put into practice because of the 1755 earthquake, after which an important reconstruction effort was directed to the central part of the city. 2

Trapero argues that contemporary European guidelines for waterfronts follow the Spanish/Portuguese model. Both countries and Latin American countries have always recognized that river or sea waterfronts are for public use.


6. M. Bellin (1756) View of the Alcantâra river and bridge, and the Santos harbour, the image is part of two hydrographic studies made for the port of Lisbon.

7. Mardel waterfront plan c 1750, the 12km promenade cuts straight through land and river.,

Conflict of Interests

Nevertheless Mardel’s plan had an impact centuries later. Some of its ideas were recovered during the construction of the industrial port around 1900s (see plate 8). At the time there was a conflict between two institutional powers: the Navy and the Port Authority. The plan approved for the construction of the industrial port was never completed. Adolpho Loureiro (1902) – appointed by the government to direct the port construction – wrote a report where he argued that

‘the Navy facilities should move elsewhere. If the Avenues and railway lines could pass in front of the Navy facilities – the Arsenal and the Tour of War –


6. (cont.). This image is not rigorous about the visual aspect of the city but instead shows the natural and the artificial features of the waterfront of Lisbon before the earthquake.

7. (cont.)

without blocking their access to the river, as proposed by Hersent (contractor), a great amount of money could be saved.’ Adolpho Loureiro argued that the Navy facilities should be relocated and moved from the central area of the city (a site of prestige next to the main square) to Alcântara, about 3 km west. To support his argument Loureiro published Mardel’s plan almost 150 years after it was designed by its author. Although he made subtle changes in the original drawing before publishing the altered copy, probably in an attempt to give historical legitimacy to his argument.3 (see plate 9)


Loureiro’s version of the Carlos Mardel Project became regularly published and referenced in publications. Fonseca Mendes 1951 in Lisboa e os curiosos fastos do seu porto, Revista dos Arquitectos, 1988June, published a research work about the cronology of the Port of Lisbon, Santana e Sucena in Dicionário da História de Lisboa; Porto de Lisboa; p.726


8. New Quay’s explanation - Explicação do Caes Novo entre 1733-1763 by Carlos Mardel (drawing measures: 2892x563mm). Detail of the Alcântara area with river junction. There was a major landfill at a beach area, and the construction of a canal to control the water flow of tides. The new buildings were placed along the riverside, behind a double line of trees.

9. The plan shows the expansion of the Arsenal (Navy facilities). The ‘avenue’ was moved inland in order to free a large surface to build the future naval infrastructures. Placing the facilities at this new site would remove them from the city and bring them nearer the sea. This area of wetlands had particular problems with tides, but the harbor would offer shelter for boats and ships. Although the drawing Loureiro published reveals noticeable differences when compared to the original one, its authorship was still attributed to Carlos Mardel.


Organic Growth Before Industrial


construction port






considerable land reclamation works were made at Boa Vista. This area went through a gradual growth towards the river, with the settlement of several warehouses and barns to support maritime activities. A plan dating from the late 18th century shows no record of any building (Carvalho, 1970-71). In 1823 two parallel piers and a bended quay were built (Ramos, 1988). Another plan dating from a later date shows private warehouses on the beach (Loureiro, 1907). But it is only in 1854 that Pezerat develops a complete project for the Boa Vista area, known as Aterro da Boa Vista. In 1964 the waterfront Avenue (Av. 24 de Julho) was completed. The most complete study about the area was produced within the context of a proposal commissioned by the Town Hall (Lamas and Mimoso, 1995). At the City of Lisbon Museum there is one painting, from the early 1800s, by Anne Wilson that shows an image of Santos cove before the creation of the Boa Vista landfill. The plate 8 shows the four plans as follows: c.1785 – Santos cove c.1807/26 – first landfill c.1871 - waterfront boulevard c.1911 - industrial port.

10. Historic evolution of the Boavista landfill.


Dynamic balance between water and land

One of the most complete books published about the port of Lisbon was written by Baldaque da Silva, a military engineer working for the Port Authority. In his Estudo Histórico Hydrographico sobre a Barra e o Porto de Lisboa (Historic Hydro Study) about the river and the Port of Lisbon, Baldaque presented a collection of ancient maps to suggest, among other things, that the city had always been intimately related with the water. Navigation and protection were of great importance. The book includes a map showing geometric connections between several elements along the Lisbon harbor. A forgotten drawing which provided a more complex understanding of the territory and indicated the specific location of exceptional buildings constructed between 1761-75 for protection, and improvement of navigation (Baldaque, 1893).

There was a project for a third tower placed on an artificial island and between the existing one at Belém and the old tower which guarded the entrance to the harbor. That third tower was never built. In this project, like in other projects, there was an attempt to propose improvements of various kinds. These included the creation of conditions for defense, shipping traffic, better navigability, control of tides and currents, protection for the Navy ships or their visual control, and all strategies involved the river. The attempt to control an existing natural condition and transform it, making it suitable for the purposes of the local community, was also considered in the project.

All landfill is artificial and therefore modifies the river and its natural system. Back in the 1890s, Baldaque had such concerns and wrote a critical study about the transformation the industrial port would induce.4 The study revealed a critical approach and questioned the physical separation of the historic city from the river. According to this author it should be taken in consideration that the new port could sever the relationship established throughout the centuries. The core of his argument was based on water currents. The thalweg line is defined through a survey of the riverbed5 containing details about the changes produced by the construction of the port. From 1885 to 1892 regular surveys were made (see plate 11). 4

For more detailed information see Uma Objecção Técnica às Obras do Porto de Lisboa (1888) by Baldaque da Silva, and in Estudo Histórico Hydrographico sobre a Barra do Porto de Lisboa, 1893, that also includes the Commission opinion from August 6th, 1887. 5 Ibis, Plate 1, Perfil nº 1, 2 e 3


11. Sections of the river Tagus published by Baldaque da Silva (1888) using thalweg system.

Those surveys were compared by Baldaque who used their details to support his argument, which he did by publishing the transversal sections showing the area along the river. There was an attempt to rigorously measure the volume of water of the river using the scientific means available at the time. Through this research Baldaque intended to show to which extent the river was being tightened and that, as a consequence, the natural balance would be put at risk. Two years before the publication of the ‘Historic Hydro Study’, Baldaque had presented, to the commission responsible for the construction of the port, an alternative to the project that had been approved. The legend says ‘according to the constructions already built’, which means that the 1891 map by Baldaque traces the port works that were completed, and proposes a new strategy for the central area of the city – such an option put aside the construction of the industrial port at Santos6. In spite of being based on scientific data and geographic analysis, this study remains an hypothetical theory that can not be totally verified due to the endless changes the river endures. Baldaque’s argument was nevertheless inspired by cultural issues. One of the characteristics of waterfront cities, “as Braunfels has pointed out, is that when we arrive by boat, we enter them not on their periphery but in their center.”(Kostof, 1999, 39) The separation of the city from the river would represent an irreversible change resulting in unpredictable transformations. Such moment was an inspiration for some and an irresponsible attitude for others.

Baldaque opposed the idea of a maritime neighborhood which was put forward by many individuals, such as Conte Clarange du Lucotte and Thomé de Gamond, during the period of time between the 1850s to the 1870s. Baldaque’s opinion was contrary to a new city placed over the river, and to the use of a strip of landfill in front of the city as presented in the majority of the other projects. 6

See Estudo Histórico Hydrographico sobre a Barra do Porto de Lisboa, Tomo I Baldaque (1895) presents “Alterações ao plano approvado das obras de melhoramento do Porto de Lisboa, ponto 3 Supressão do ante-porto, doca de Santos, novo aterro da Boavista e caes do Codré, e doca do Arsenal”, p.97


12. Baldaque (1991) presents this drawing to the commission to change the Port of Lisbon,

13. Port of Lisbon: detailed plan from Alcântara river to the Royal Square, Terreiro do Paço. Three docks at Alcântara, Santos and Arsenal. 1888.

A considerable number of very complete proposals were submitted – some of them rather visionary and lacking a technical basis – for the so-called improvement of the port. These proposals show the influence of what was happening in several port cities throughout Europe which started to welcome large industrial infrastructures. It was modern culture embracing modernity, man’s victory over nature, machines that were meant to transform people’s lives, to make life easier for them. 109

12. (cont.) from the Santos area, through C. Sodré to the Royal Square, Terreiro do Paço.

13. The same drawing is published by Ben-Saude, Joaquim, (1887) ‘Lisbon Harbour Works’, in Engeneering, London.

At this particular moment Baldaque’s concerns with ecologic and natural balance in a sort of an holistic approach were not well received by dominant opinion makers and the powers that be. His book raised questions, presented criticism based on research, and offered alternatives. Nevertheless, as said before, the General Plan for the Port of Lisbon was already under construction. 110

The dream of modernity

The first steamboat started to be operated in 1821 and originated a long list of projects submitted by dozens of personalities from 1823 to 1886. Adolpho Loureiro carefully compiled most of the proposals in his book “Os Portos Marítimos de Portugal Atlas III” (1907) which remains the most complete document on the subject. Here one can compare some very complete proposals for the so called improvement of the port that came to light. Conte Clarange du Lucotte in 1855 and 1873 and Thomé de Gamond in 1870 (see plate 15), among others, conceived the idea of a maritime neighbourhood – a new town constructed between the existing one and the river. These plans were personal visions, some produced by independent intellectuals influenced by the ‘industrial culture’ and the necessity to create a new port. Several port cities throughout Europe started to welcome large industrial infrastructures. Barcelona, for instance, created Barceloneta, a new neighbourhood constructed over landfill supported by the pier at Port Vell.

14. Reeves’s project for the industrial port of Lisbon got the second prize, and refers rotating bridges. Drawing published by Adolfo Loureiro.


The boundary between land and water is an up-to-date subject for debate, it raises profound philosophical questions, with man conquering the land and reshaping its geography. The historical progression of the waterfront is of major importance to understand its future. Pierre Hersent, a French Engineer, was commissioned to design the General Plan for the Port Improvements in 1897. At that time there was a political vision to create an industrial port. But how could this be done? By building piers or creating landfill? The city did not have the “know how” or the financial capability to create the port. The discussion was about how, when and who could build it. An international competition for tenders was launched because the Government did not have the means to construct the port. Size and shape of the docks and piers were designed according to functional requirements. The city expected to pay expenses by selling new land conquered to the river. This was the main reason to choose Hersent´s project and refuse Reeve´s who proposed transversal piers (see plat 14) and very little landfill. Hersent´s company was paid accordingly to the amount of reclaimed land.

15. Thomé de Gamond (1870) project for the maritime neighborhood. At that period the city started expanding inland and not along the river.


The incomplete Industrial Port

The French Engineer Pierre Hersent won the International competition and was commissioned with the General Plan for the Port Improvements. Hersent was leading the construction of the port as well as the exploration of the port for the first five years.7 The construction of the port was a very expensive public work, and the government had no money to pay the contractor, therefore Hersent was paid with land conquered to the river.8 After years of discussions, major construction works started at the end of 1887. There were several intermediate drawings presented by Hersent before the final proposal was accepted. An agreement involving politicians, the commission created for the port, the investors and the contractor allowed the definition of a final plan that was approved and published, and therefore became public.9

The plan presented above, dating from 1887, reveals a continuous strip of reclaimed land along the city’s waterfront, with a railway line (see plate 13), a strip like a belt around the city. This project was never fully constructed. The railway track that would pass in front of the whole city, including the Royal Square and the Arsenal, was never built. Hersent’s project offered an efficient and modern port, but the city, for a variety of reasons, rejected parts of the plan, thus turning it into a less efficient project. The Navy claimed the direct access from their facilities and docks to the river. According to Loureiro’s opinion the Navy’s position contradicted the functional system of the port and squandered its potential. At the time Baldaque claimed that the tightening of the river was a risk, others claimed economic reasons in favor of their cause. The tension among the bodies involved is never dissolved due to the absence of a powerful supervision. Others argue that the fact that the industrial port was never completed, reflects the lack of dialogue between the institutions involved. The following projects to be implemented shaped a fragmented waterfront of an incomplete industrial port. As Claude Chaline (1997) argues, the collective mind plays a role, and the Royal Square could not be cut from the river. This is probably the reason why 7

The newspaper Correio da Noite reports the conflict between the contractor Hersent and the Government. Hersent asked for the extension of the commercial exploration license for another five years period, but the government only extended it for three more years, Lisboa, 14/07/1902. 8 Decreto-Lei, a special law dated July, 16th , 1886, which authorizes the government to pay by property value of the landfill area. 9 BENSAUDE, Joaquim, Ver livro no Gabinete de Estudos Olissiponenses (ref. CT 25-G) plano aprovado publicado pelo próprio, Lisboa, 1887


there was some resistance (expressed through different means) against the port completion, while in the past there had been a great enthusiasm around the creation of a new industrial port that would welcome modernity.

The incomplete port and consequent lack of railway line between Sta Apol贸nia and C. Sodr茅 expressed the unsuccessful policy of the Port Authority (AGPL at the time). Contrary to the plan this area kept a physical connections between city and port. It was only during the 1940s, under the dictatorship (the prevailing regime in Portugal at the time), that an authoritarian decision put an end to the conflict between institutions. Then it was settled that a new road was to be built. This road disrupted the Arsenal connection to the river, and became the first O-ring of a circular route that would drive the city away from the river. Those were the glorious years of the automobile and the promise that it would solve the traffic problems of the city.

16. The port is under construction as published in 1905, but only partially built due to the conflicts.

17. The first commission (1871) presented a scheme that included urban expansion at aterro da Boavista, banned navy facilities, creation of new docks and an industrial neighbourhood.


18. Plan presented by the special comission created by the central government in March 16, 1883

19. Plan by Francisco Pereira da Silva 1884, proposes large areas for urban development of buildings related to the port activity.


Chapter 4 – Projects and influences in the Lisbon waterfront

Transition models


Modern means of transportation


The monumental image


The writer’s perception


Large squares at the waterfront


Last projects

136 116

1. Above and previous page: During the construction of the Industrial Port of Lisbon the engineer Melo de Matos has produce images which reveal a futuristic vision for the site.


Transition models The river is before/in front of and after/behind the city. It goes through the city, which is ‘the image of time in history’, the ‘ image of time in nature’, a time where past, present and future exist together. Such permanent presence of a time that remains the same, actually the river, seems to wash out the differences imprinted before and after in the objects located along the river. Carla Esposito, Vedute del Tevere nella Graphica dal XVI al XVIII secolo

The space located between city and river became a void. The area created by the construction of the Industrial Port of Lisbon now faces emptiness and longs for the creation of a large public space, a special space. To understand Lisbon as a port city, one can address cultural issues, and analyse a number of circumstances and of projects developed for the waterfront. Plans produced throughout the centuries relate to the geography and topography of the site. They generate an urban geometry that deals with specific natural conditions and the effort to control them. River Tagus estuary is the reason for the city existence, as well as the base for a variety of activities engaged by generations of Lisbonians. The theme of urban waterfront projects has been and still is widely discussed, and the built projects are mostly described as a successful achievement. Samperi (1986, 47) explains that ‘in comparison with other forms of urban development – by almost any measure you wish to choose – the waterfront is the most difficult and complex area to develop’. According to Hall (1993, 13) this is due to three major factors: ‘the availability of large under-utilised land areas in the heart of cities; the tremendous surge in the service sector of the economy; and the near-magnetic relationship between the waterfront and people’. Breen and Rigby, founders of the Waterfront Centre (Washington, D.C.), share the aforesaid view. While agreeing that many urban waterfront projects are successful, mainly because they are ‘an exercise of community will to make things better’, Breen and Rigby (1996, 12) also point out their ‘dark side’:

‘New waterfront development, however beneficial, by no means constitutes a replacement of the blue-collar jobs that once existed in these areas. The waterfront turnaround then, may be seen as a success story with an


underlying consequence that constitutes one of today’s most fundamental social problems in developed countries – lack of job prospects for unskilled workers. There is also the related issue of gentrification. In some cases resident neighbourhoods of predominantly poor people have not been well served in the name of waterfront development.’

To imagine the future one may need to be informed about the past and the present. However, such knowledge would be incomplete without a reference to the projects that were never built but provided futuristic visions in their timeframe. As we have argued before the waterfront development is the result of a combination of projects, individual and collective will, political interests, financial instruments, technical requirements. The complexity involved is such that it is hard to grasp it all. In the sense that there are so many aspects concerned, to enlarge the range of cultural contributions does not seem an incoherence, and that is why excerpts of the Lisbon’s waterfront narrative made by three authors of different times are included herein. These writers perception is profound and shows a deep interest about the site. Their words will be quoted further on. Today we may have lost an industrial complex, a railway intersection, an harbour or a commercial settlement. That is to say, a strictly functional relationship with the water vanished from people’s life. Meanwhile a new financial and business centre, tourism and hotel industry facilities, a marina, an airport, an ocean park, a festival market, and a leisure area for cultural events were constructed. A cosmopolitan image of modernity, combined with international references and almost ‘copycat’ versions of solutions already implemented in other parts of the world – sometimes by the same creators and builders – are repeated until they reach complete banality (Portas, 1998, 11). And thus resemble the previous phenomenon that occurred with the construction of industrial ports worldwide. This perspective creates an haunting shadow that darkens and undermines the process of transformation of the Lisbon waterfront.

Modern means of transportation Railway and road traffic has expanded intensively in the last century, and has evolved into a faster circular flow flanked by the port and the city. Public accessibility and 119

transversal connections from the inner city to the water are affected by the ‘cut effect’ created by these contemporary infrastructures. The Port Authority argues that a number of their present activities can be transferred elsewhere, and thus the river could be returned to the urban life. Although the waterfront is now available, the city remains separated from the river by the above mentioned barriers. In the 1890s landfill allowed to incorporate new railway lines establishing another connection between the port, the city and a larger territory around it. On the other hand, when railway infrastructures grow, ports behave like independent industrial units ignoring the city, therefore the transversal ‘cut effect’ must be considered. When freeways displayed this pattern (between the 60s and 70s), the need to enhance easy access between the existing city and the port became clearer, and in many cases the mentioned criterion was applied (Telje, Torp, Aasen, 1991)1 The traditional relationship city/port through major infrastructures is in the center of a great struggle involving the design of the contemporary city. In Barcelona the ‘by pass’ that suppresses cars on the waterfront – with Moll de la Fusta by Sola Morales – allowed the pedestrians to recover the ground level and to access the historic town. This was in the 1980s. In 2001, Catalan architects proposed for De Boompjes, Rotterdam, the remodeling of the four lane road ‘in order to integrate it with the pedestrians spaces, enlarging sidewalks and adding traffic lights at every crossing to establish transverse permeability and reduce traffic speed (Henrich and Forjas, 2001, 48).’

For the reasons described above the city of Lisbon kept a direct relation with the water from Sta. Apolónia to Cais Sodré. In each of these sites there is a train station. The construction of a railway track to connect the aforesaid stations – as originally planned for the industrial port – never took place. Midway between the two stations and along the waterfront, the city’s main square touches the river. Lisbonians never lost their visual and physical contact with the water in this small area of the waterfront. Meanwhile, traffic has increased enormously after the construction of Av. Arsenal.


Architects who were involved in the urban renovation of Oslo. They submitted a project (1980-90) for the development of a new central area in Oslo, in which they explained the will to remove the thoroughfare traffic on a highway between the bay and the city. This has been a trend for most historic city-port areas, although the latest projects include automobile traffic under tight restrictions.


2. The Lisbon Tramway Project by Louis de Lennen, 1862, AHMOP. The line to be created along the river does not interfere with links between river and city.

Consequently, the physical link with the water was broken. Since then the improvement of this small area of the waterfront was held back and still waits further definition of what it may become.

Luiz de Lenne’s tramway plan is the most detail and rigorous document of the city relation with the river before the transformation occurred with the construction of the industrial landfill of the port. The drawings remain a record of an urban reality that vanished shortly after their execution (see plate 2). They covered the riverside distance 121

2. (cont.)

from Sta. Apolónia to Ajuda, from the most eastern to the most western city limits. Further out laid the countryside. It is in the central area that the relationship between docks, quays, piers and the streets, the squares, gardens and shipyards are particular relevant – the urban fabric extends to the river and vice versa. The diversity of urban spaces at the waterfront is carefully traced in Lenne’s plan as they register an ‘intimacy’ between the urban spaces and the water. The tramway linked the railway station standing at the time at the city edge, passed Cais do Sodré and went along the railway up to Ajuda. Cais do Sodré was the city’s most central station at the ground level, and not an underground one like Rossio railway station. Such presence has created a problem that the city has never been able to solve.

The Arsenal avenue was built privileging the automobile and longitudinal road movement (see plate 3). The traffic flow grew every year at a speedy rate originating a related urban problem. Traffic itself became an obstacle for the city to maintain a peaceful relationship with the water. In 1994 another plan was commissioned by the Town Hall, the Port Authority and the Portuguese Railway Co. shared rights over the territory. Finally they agreed to commission

a project to a group of international

architects – Terry Farrel & Partners (British), T+T Design (Dutch), Miguel Correia (Portuguese) and Prof. Juan Busquets (Spanish). The solution was characterized for 122

3. Central area of Lisbon: project (Belo, 1936) for traffic flow improvement. Red lines represent the scheme for underground tramways. The study also presents sections of tunnels under a jammed town area and where trains could move fast. Blue circles show underground ways for road traffic under the historic town. The waterfront avenue on landfill, in front of Arsenal facilities, was still under discussion at the time.

being a consensual one and one shared by the several parts involved. The project establishes a relationship, using the palm tree element, to unify two large avenues that were built in different centuries (one in the 1870s and the other in the 1940s), but it did not present an urban design that could re-link city and water (see plate 4). The visual continuity between avenues would privilege the intense traffic flow that threatens any possible solution for street life and improvement of urban spaces.

Busquets presence in the team could have brought the discussion about the traffic on the site but no question was raised about the traffic flow that jeopardizes any solution for the area. Busquets expertise and previous experience with Moll de la Fusta designed by Sola-Morales.did not influence the other authors, and the site kept the same character, a gap between the existing buildings and the river, shaping a piece of land that is some kind of leftover or a backyard, and yet the most unforgettable site. 123

4. Cais do Sodré area from the railway station to the main square. New buildings are represented in dark. The project was designed in 1994.

The monumental image

In 1936, the engineer António Belo (1936, 47) published a study meant to improve traffic flow in the city by connecting the downtown area and the water using perpendicular tunnels to the river. At that time, most of the traffic was concentrated along the tramway line. ‘Electric trams and bicycles, introduced at the end of the 19th century, gave people a wider range and allowed the city to expand significantly in area’ (Gehl and Gemzoe, 2000, 13). There was no vision of a circular road that could run external to the city and along the riverside. Main traffic problems occurred between the lower and the higher parts of the city. A series of underground tunnels for private cars and public means of transport were proposed. Most important is the transversal access the study proposes. The unsolved conflict opposing Arsenal (the Navy) and the Port Authority allowed the very central part of the city to remain linked to the river.


5. Juxtaposition of two drawings: one of the existing situation (red line), and the project (in blue) for the Cais do Sodré/Arsenal area proposed by Perestelo in 1931, which included a maritime avenue . A series of public and significant buildings: the Stock Exchange, the Central Post Office, Court House, Port Authority headquarters and other administrative buildings. An hotel would be facing the waterfront.

This small waterfront area formed the only gap in the barrier along the industrial port – it was like a window opening into the river. Perestelo presents the project at the opening of the International Engineers Congress and provokes a strong impact at the audience, as he suggests an alternative to the central area of Lisbon: a new façade for the city. The importance given to the image of the city perceived from the river it is suggestive. The program proposed the construction of monumental buildings separated from each other by green corridors that would allow visual contact with the river (see plate 5). Temporary buildings at the Navy facilities cast a precarious image, of an operating shipyard used by working class worker’s. Next to it, the main square of the city with its century old magnificent architecture. The ‘ensemble’ breathed contradiction.


5. (cont.) The work for the construction of landfill was to be paid through the sale of its new land.

The city’s ‘reception room’ – lined with monumental buildings that were (and still are) occupied by government departments – and industrial artifacts were side by side (see plate 6 and 7). Those unfinished artifacts made of cheap materials looked more like ‘shanty town’. The capital of the Empire was worth of a carefully constructed image in tune with the bourgeois culture of the time. The conflict opposing several government institutions and the Navy expressed the different visions of independent political forces with power over and acting on the same territory. Thus, during the construction of the industrial port there was a lack of coordination while each institution remained independent. That policy had a physical reflection on reality: the industrial port remained unfinished till today. During the dictatorship period there was a well succeeded attempt to centralize power, with a rather negative impact in the Navy controlled area and in the city.


6. Air view of Arsenal (photograph taken before 1940).

7. Aerial view of central Lisbon (photograph taken in the 1940s); the Arsenal facilities have direct access to the river and to the large public space; the Royal Square faces the river, without the road barrier.2

Terreiro do Paço, the royal square, was the official entrance into the city. In the past, the water has been the main gateway to access waterfront cities, and even today if one visits them by boat one comes ashore not on their periphery but in their center. Until the construction of the first bridge, people arrived to the city of Lisbon mainly by boat, and so the town was first perceived from the river. Belo’s project intended to channel passengers arriving from overseas side by side with local passengers crossing the river by boat. To that purpose, the river and sea terminals were placed right, left and in front of the main square. Belo’s plan overlapped existing buildings at the Arsenal site, and 2

The rapid road was designed during the dictatorship period. At that time, power was heavily centralized and the government imposed his scheme for the Navy facilities. Although the Navy had always claimed their right to access to the river.


proposed a new urban fabric that would generate an updated image of the city. A renovated space of nine hundred meters of new buildings facing the water. The railway station would be hidden behind the new buildings, erasing the periphery traits of the site. The plan did not favor road traffic, for Marginal avenue was located along the riverside and was used as a ‘reception dock’ for cruise passengers. An existing square, Corpo Santo, would be extended to the river through a green corridor perpendicular to the riverfront.

The writers’ perception

Three books about Lisbon, written by three different Portuguese authors, describe the waterfront as the most privileged site in the city. Lisboa – Livro de Bordo (1998) by José Cardoso Pires. What the tourist should see (1925) by Fernando Pessoa. And Urbis Olisiponis Descriptio (1554) by Damião de Góis.

Pires chose to end his book with a chapter titled Finis terrae where he describes a café by the river. The author is sitting at one of the café’s tables and wonders why such a privileged place remains unknown. Pires (1998, 113) writes his delight at the following scene: ‘Boats that arrive, boats that departure, people coming in and out to eat and drink at the counter, and I am seating on top of the Tagus. My back is turned to the city. Trade, crowds, Europe, everything behind my back. (…) While in this forgotten shelter the time of the day is measured by the changing shades in the colour of the river.’

Pessoa (1992, 32-35) starts his description saying: ‘For the traveler who comes in from the sea’ (…), which was the most common way to arrive in Lisbon, at the time. Then the poet suggests the road that goes along the waterfront, pointing out public gardens, public squares, palaces, the Town Hall, Naval Arsenal, Naval College to finally ‘reach the largest of Lisbon squares’ (…). And Pessoa continues ‘The general aspect of the square is of a kind to give a very agreeable impression to the most exacting of tourists’. Further on the author gives us a detailed narrative of buildings and public spaces, blending in several remarks about historical events. Pessoa extensively describes some of the national monuments located by the river, using words like ‘magnificent stone jewel’, ‘astonishment and growing appreciation’, or ‘in all its details there is an 128

exquisite perception of proportion and effect.’ Apparently the poet was not interested in the recently built industrial facilities/buildings at the port because he never mentions them, as if they simply weren’t there.

Gois divides his book in four parts. Book II is titled Around the City Walls, from Belém to the Gate of the Cross, and the author dedicates special attention to the riverfront. About the overall appearance of the city Gois (1996, 22) writes: ‘it would no doubt be verified that the shape of the city resembles that of a fish bladder. If the ground were entirely flat it would appear from that side to have the form of an arch.’ The city kept this shape – a linear strip along the river – until the mid 1800s. This is confirmed by written descriptions by Lord Byron, and other authors, as well as drawings representing the city before the industrialization. The urban expansion inland following plans by Frederico Ressano Garcia occurs simultaneously with the construction of the industrial port.

The perception of a territory is influenced by several factors. The topography, the geography and the geometry are aspects that influence the cultural landscape. Accoding to Kostof (1992, 41) there is a clear conflict between people who use the river as a working watercourse for trading activities and those who ‘would turn it into a work of art’. We could say that there is a disparity of interests and a lack of communication conditioning views on the waterfront as expressed in a way by the words of Joseph

8. Title of the drawing: Trigonometric observations that were made in the site, produced by the Military Academy’s Sergeant Guilherme Clyden, in 1767 Legend: F – Ajuda Church

E – Bugio Tower

C – Belém Tower

H –Old Tower

9. Project for the third tower. The plan, section and elevation of both river and tower. Other drawings had shown the entrance to the harbor closed with chains and a series of boats blocking any access through the harbor to the city.

10. The drawing shows a system of parallel chains that would create a physical barrier in case of invasion by sea. The entrance to the city was gated between the defensive towers. The chain that linked both banks was supported by the ships in the middle of the river. The solution was never tested







Konvitz: ‘those who operate the maritime world and those who grant cultural significance to its artifacts (…) belong to two separate cultures (…) which have little to say to one another.’3 And yet in Lisbon the mixed use or métissage has always been present, and stands out as a determining feature of the waterfront.

A large collection of ancient maps representing Lisbon harbour was published by Baldaque da Silva, a military engineer working for the Port Authority. Navigation and safety were of major importance. The book presented a map of the Lisbon harbor revealing geometric connections between several elements, such as towers, fortresses, etc. It was a forgotten drawing, but one which provides a complex or a more detailed reading of the site. The location of those buildings was subject to the requirements of

navigation and defense techniques. That is to say, another layer that is not perceivable to most, and yet is fundamental for the understanding of the territory and the specific placement of exceptional buildings. Several studies were presented during the 1850s by P.J. Pezerat regarding surveys and studies for future docks and industrial port facilities. This represents the shift from defensive strategies to trading necessities. In his book about Lisbon maritime defense line, Francisco Soares, (1847) shows a new tower for defensive purposes, as mentioned in the previous chapter. The existing Belém Tower and the old tower guarded the entrance to the harbor. Between those two towers, the project proposed a third tower placed on an artificial island. According to the description this would provide a more effective protection to the city, although it was never built. Defensive strategies were presented throughout the process of the creation of the industrial port since another book by António Freitas (1868) also shows a drawing with a chain block to prevent access to the city when needed.

These drawings reveal concepts and ideas that stimulate the collective mind to read the territory’s memory and to realize different readings are overlapped offering an alternative understanding of the site.


Konvitz, quoted in Spiro Kostof The City Assembled, T & H, London, 1992, p. 41.


11. Proposal for Lisbon by F. Juvarra in which the civic and representative image of the waterfront is emphasized, as previously done for Messina, Sicily.

12. Title «Lisboa – Vista da praia dos Santos em 1788» by Albert Dufourcq.


Large squares at the waterfront

‘Juvarra’s presence at Lisbon allowed King D. João to transform his plans for the new Lisbon into a precise image, a true scenario of power characterized by three essential components: to expand the city towards the west, concentrate his own symbols of actual and spiritual power in a platform over the river; restructure all the waterfront as the city’s face. The aristocrats in Lisbon understood it very soon. Many palaces were immediately built along the roads coming from the city centre towards west.’

Either inspired by D. João V plan or vision for the waterfront, the Italian architect F. Juvara designed a large square with wide stairways descending to the water, as shown in plate 11. Juvara’s drawing was the visual three-dimensional representation of a new square. Squares on the waterfront are shown in both plans mentioned above. The 1727 plan commissioned by D. João V contained at least one new square clearly traced at the Belem area.

The Mardel’s plan presents a large square next to the main one (Terreiro do Paço) at the

Santos area (see plate 13), and a third new square with a church and a public fountain at Belem. Access to the river was probably provided through large stairways. New docks and piers would be built along the river. Mardel’s plan anticipated a continuous landfill along the waterfront with a promenade for public access with new buildings, thus transforming the image of the city. Such waterfront square would clearly offer an alternative to the central but congested area where the royal palace square was located. This plan, which was commissioned by D. José, was never put into practice because a violent earthquake occurred shortly after. Following the 1755 earthquake, Marquês de Pombal, who was the ruling Prime Minister at the time, gave full priority to the reconstruction of the destroyed city. Great effort was put into the production of new plans for the Enlightenment city. Meanwhile the initial plan, i. e., Mardel’s, probably influenced other authors and provided some ideas on the urban relationship with the river.


Pombal’s reconstruction was primarily aimed to impose order over chaos, to control the territory and make the water edge a manageable limit between the known land and the wild ocean (see plate 15 and 16). In this planned city it was sought an harmony between form and function, and an attempt to achieve it took the shape of redesigned and improved new public spaces facing the river. The philosophy for the waterfront was for it to extend the street from the town on the hill to the level of the landfill. A new topography lead by the creation of new public spaces. Both plans we have mentioned plans - Mardel and Pombalino addressed de idea of squares, large spaces for public activities at the waterfront. Although the idea of Molho Grande to the area of Aterro da Boavista (see plate 14) had been abandon after the earthquake, Loureiro brought back the idea and published the drawing in 1907. The square is now called Praça Nova na

Boa Vista it is larger, presents a circular fountain in the centre, stairways to the river, closes the square towards the river with a cross plan building, but the legend still mention Mardel as the author of the drawing.

13. Detail of Mardel’s plan (1750s) that presents a large square – named Molho Grande at the Boavista area. The landfill over the river had transversal canals designated by ‘B’.

14. Loureiro’s perception of Mardel’s plan reshapes the square, enlarging and enclosing it and eliminates two transversal canals.


15. Plan view overlapped two realities that illustrate Pombal’s ideas for the riverfront.

16. Plans show the evolution of urban design from 1750 to 1790. Perspectives: analysis of public space (red) that links the higher level to the landfill.


Last projects In 1988, with a series of projects and drawings, rules and laws, visions and conflicts of ideas, the Lisbon waterfront was again in the centre of a passionate debate promoted by the Architects’ Association. A competition was set that attracted a lot of proposals and ideas for the waterfront renovation. Some teams took it very seriously and presented ready-to-build proposals. Other teams addressed issues that approached in new ways the city’s accessibility and physical relation to the river. A series of projects, that will never be built, provided an alternative vision and a different understanding of the area. There were creative proposals, some historically based, creating public spaces and local infrastructures, re-evaluating the relationship between the urban fabric and water (see plate 17).

Architects and landscape architects, students and professionals, all got together to confront their ideas and discuss the future of the city. This time they were not oriented by financial constraints. Several workshops have been taking place since the 1988 Architect’s Association competitions for Ideas concerning the waterfront of Lisbon. Mainly promoted by local universities, they gather students and architects oriented by national and international teachers. The theme originates great enthusiasm among architects and urban planners, because the situation is obviously problematic. L’Association International des Villes et

Ports, AIVP, based at Le Havre the port of Paris, in partnership with Área Metropolitina de Lisboa AML, chose to realize its 9th International Conference precisely in the city of Lisbon and its estuary.

The city underground water has been and still is in the center of discussions. Constant landfill changed the geography of the town through the centuries. The technology of Enlightenment used wooden pillars to build on wetland. The ground level of the city at the waterfront was constructed over wooden pillars, so this territory has a shaky equilibrium. From the technical point of view water is needed below to keep the buildings foundations in good conditions and stable. But these foundations are currently in danger due to the excavation for underground tunnels and parking lots, also due to heavy road traffic on the waterfront.


17. Perspective drawing by Ricardo Faria Blanc and Francisco Marinho of a project awarded with a FLAD prize in 19884

Contemporary necessities and goals for the city point to public use of the site and access to the river. Where the obsolete industrial port was located new activities are taking place. Refusing the Expo model the Port Authority is ‘cleaning up the deck’. According to new policies, docks and piers are and will be used for other purposes, mainly restaurants and leisure activities. Neither housing nor office buildings and retail shops will be placed along the port area. This strategy disrupts the continuity of the mixed uses and deteriorates urban life.

The dialogue between the Transportation Co., the Port Authority, the City Planning Office and other governmental institutions is not coordinated by any supervisory organization. The current policy does not promote the dialogue with the city civil forces and is incapable of delineating a structured coordination of the various institutional 4

In his final report, the jury commented on this project as follows: In a powerful formal composition, this work presents a model of city and of relationship with the river based on the interplay of Built Space/Free Space/Canal/River. The Architectonic and Urban morphologies add new values and protect the pre-existing heritage, stitching the whole frontline in a vigorous re-creation of the Mediterranean urban tradition – the semi-closed public space, the large square, the yard, the free ground in neighborhoods, the small square, with the ever present water in the foreground. The proposed project daringly defends the need to construct, to re-build the city, with special emphasis in a ‘social’ behavior: simultaneity of different uses, the city intercourse with the river, of the new with old, of the city with memory.


powers involved. The lack of coordination stands out as one of the main obstacles to the carrying out the rehabilitation process of the port area.

The permanent transformation of the territory inspired some students to design projects that proposed alternative views criticizing the present situation (see plate 18). Having a critical attitude towards the industrial heritage, in these proposals a part of the platform appears torn down to reshape the territory, and try to recover the natural tidal volume that has been seriously altered at the site. Shrinking the river section has brought changes in the tides and flows that may cause unpredictable problems for the ecological balance. A solution for the problem was postponed, and the question remains of what to do along the waterfront in the future.

18. Composition by Pedro R. Garcia, based on two models presented at a workshop by students of Architecture and Landscape Architecture from CALA University of Minnesota together with Faculdade de Arquitectura da Universidade de Lisboa, March 2002.


Reflecting on the importance of architects taking position, Elia Zenghelis says: (…) ‘participants should declare a very strong view and develop concepts that they could defend in projecting a future for the city’. Then the author comments the Marseille waterfront transformation: ‘(the city) is now involved in the process of acquiring a new façade, a new sea front, which in turn gives rise to the opportunity to discuss architecture and the iconography of architecture as a kind of theoretical, symbolic aspect’. And he adds: ‘This also leads to the idea, very strongly illustrated, perhaps by default, of architecture not being contextual, but always generating context.’

Remesar vision perceived that ‘man-made landscapes would be correlated with nature’s landscapes and all the elements would combine in terms of the new and vast facade, sometimes extending for many miles, which has been revealed to us by the air view. This could be contemplated not only during a rapid flight but also from an helicopter stopping in mid-air. Monumental architecture will be something more than strictly functional. It will have regained its lyrical value. In such monumental layouts, architecture and city planning could attain a new freedom and develop new creative possibilities, such as those that have begun to be felt in the last decades in the fields of painting, sculpture, music, and poetry’.

On the waterfront the future objects of architecture should compose a new result that one perceives as a coherent whole, objects where one can always identify the precedent structure, as a narrative constructed in time. Any intervention in this area must make use of the potentialities of architecture, as in the of the industrial mechanisms that became buildings to develop their own expressive presence as urban projects. Gonçalo Ribeiro Teles, is one of the contemporary personalities in Lisbon that became an activist promoting the understanding and respect of the landscape. While carrying out his hydro study of the industrial port landfill at Poço do Bispo, Teles found out that the landfill acts as an impermeable layer of land (see plate 19).


19. Diagram with graphic description of rainfall (green) and river water (blue). Designed by Landscape Architect G. R. Teles, the project relates present trends of holistic approach and proposes a future solution.

Ribeiro Teles landscape project seeks a sustainable solution for the landfill placed between the hills of the city and the river; at the present the landfill stops the rain water coming down from the hills to the river. If new buildings are to be build on the landfill area, the problem will increase. Furthermore, according to global weather changes, rainfall now is more intense over short periods of time, which means that a greater volume of water coming down from the hills will need to be conducted to the river. Ribeiro Teles, like Carlos Mardel did in the 18th century plan (see plate 6) proposes the creation of transversal canals that will go through the landfill, linking the hill and the river and respecting the natural topography of the hills and the artificiality of the landfill (see plate 20). Teles believes that future sustainable solutions should seek a cooperation with the forces of nature rather than their control. The presence of


transversal canals in this particular territory will inform about the artificiality of the land. Hudson (1996, 154) explains that,

‘most residents and visitors move between reclaimed areas and other parts of the city without being aware of any significant change in their urban environment. Problems such as structural damage due to fill subsidence or, more dramatically, that caused by earthquakes which are often most destructive to buildings on landfill and recent alluvial and marine deposits, might alert citizens to possible disadvantages of urban development on reclaimed land.’

The process involving the creation of landfill and its transformation is commom to most port cities. Such cities will have to deal with the rise of sea level of about one meter in the next 150 years (Bird, 1993, 125).The control of fluctuating water levels has been made in three main scenarios: adaptation, evacuation and building of walls.

20. Teles concept adapted to the object of this study shows five canals connecting the hills and the river through the industrial landfill of the port area, by Pedro R. Garcia.


1. Collage of the Expo’92 Seville project over Lisbon waterfront (1990)

Chapter 5 – Lisbon Expo’98 Public Spaces



Access to the waterfront


Financing and social integration


The role of public spaces


Cultural significance

156 142

2コ semin疵io ANE P E 11 Dezembro 2003

2. View from south east of Expo’98 urban development in 2003



The decision to construct the Expo’98 next to the riverside brought the transformation of obsolete industrial and port areas, and resulted in a very significant waterfront development project not just for Portugal. The first general ideas for the Expo area were submitted before the International Competition held in 1993 (see plate 1), and five proposals received an award, but none of them was put into practice. The process was initially supervised by Nuno Portas, major guidelines were conceived in the next year, and then several three-dimensional development plans were commissioned. The institution Parque das Nações (PN) has been named by the government to take control of the area of the Port of Lisbon, and substitute the Port Authority. Currently the PN operates at the Expo’98 project, and it is partially autonomous from the local Town Hall. In general terms the whole Expo project was economically quite successful and socially well received, mainly because of the large public spaces created near the river. A large portion of land was used following a tavola rasa model. All industry was removed and a new town area was reinvented. One of the repeated criticisms falls upon the lack of passageways and accessibility to connections with the surrounding neighborhoods of low income housing. Expo’98 waterfront development is both, in time and in space the closest city/port transformation to the object of study. It is a contemporary process and geographically very close to the port area. We will argue that some aspects of the strategy should not be applied at the port area and other aspects are significant reference as it presents already tested solutions that are worth to discuss. In the Expo’98 area it was developed a North American model of waterfront renovation, and priority was given to the creation of a new urban centrality. But the port area of Lisbon is already central to the city and it is a result of city/port complex strategies, memories, individual visions, collective will and fragments of juxtaposed intentions. Any future transformation of the port area will deal with the ancient urban fabric where historical heritage, industrial archeology and emotional legacy are intrinsically attached. The port area becoming a public space, an artistic space, must relate with memory, art, culture and historical context. Otherwise both space and public art would loose their quality and their meaning. Meanwhile, the plan elaborated by the Port Authority for the Lisbon waterfront redevelopment, known as POZOR, was presented for public discussion in 1994 and 144

revised in 1995. POZOR critical revision occurred while the Expo’98 urban project was being designed, so the former strongly influenced the later. Both plans were using large areas of ‘terrain vague’ on the waterfront, and both created some connections with the surrounding neighbourhoods. Designers were aware of previous experiences that took place in other European port cities and of critical theoretical approaches by different authors. In fact several international conferences brought a certain number of experts to Portugal, such as Brian Hoyle (1997, 50), a co-founder of the Waterfront Centre based in Washington D.C., who explained that ‘waterfront redevelopment has the effect of removing barriers between city and the sea, bringing people back to the waterfront once again – as individuals, groups, organizations, observers and participants in sporting events, customers, residents, and people who just enjoy being near or on the water.’

After the failure to implement Pozor, an active public discussion followed, and decision makers, politicians, investors, planners, architects and who else was involved in the process became aware of the potential as well as the difficulties of a future transformation. As it was pointed out by Matias Ferreira (1999, 31) ‘through the centuries waterfronts, particularly port areas, were important town sites. Their actual centrality allows us to recognize those sites as active spaces where a great deal of interaction occurs.’ Ferreira interprets these centres as a ‘geographic space that concentrates several activities’, easily accessible, and also as ‘the result of a social process that reorganizes the urban space, i. e., it is a creation of society, the expression of its values, thus assuming also a symbolic importance.’

At the site where the Expo’98 was held, later on it was created the Parque Expo. About six years after the world Expo some qualities and problems of the urban development project are now apparent. The completion of important accessibilities to the site, such as a railway and the underground, the new bridge and freeways, was fundamental to materialize the concept of a new centrality. A couple of authors are pointing out the major problems of the operation. Chaline (1997, 26) establishes a comparison: ‘It is clear that the Lisbon case has a lot in common with the London case, and that both national and international conjuncture define the perspectives of relations between old and new centrality poles.’


However each case is unique – the Dockland’s extend over 5 000 acres, and the Expo’98 is much smaller and deals with specific Portuguese constraints and potential. The analysis of Parque Expo development is useful for the future transformation of the port area, including the study of geographic conditions, of the strategy used for development, and of the urban connection between the Expo area and the surrounding neighbourhoods. The analysis will compare the relation of the previously settled communities with the newcomers. Such analysis is particularly helpful to understand the potential problems involved in the Lisbon historic centre conquest of its riverfront.

3. Marketing material produced by Parque Expo office in 2003. Containers are selected to graphically explain the concept of ‘terrain vague’ that conducted the process of transformation. The publicity text announces how their office ‘started the greatest challenge of environment and urban development in Portugal, from a deteriorated area to a world expo’.

According to the Parque Expo their projects have achieved good results at – social, environment and financial levels, and they are currently exporting their ‘formula’ to other expo organizations and are also being consulted to other waterfornt urban development in various countries. It is an international recognition for their successful achievement. What would be the strenghts and the weakeness if the same formula was to be used at the port area are the main purpose of this analysis. So the discussion about Parque Expo should focus on four main aspects, as follows: 1-

the access to the waterfront from the city;


the financial investment procedures and social integration;


the importance of large public spaces and their use;


the cultural significance of actively relating the city to the river. 146

4. View from the north side of the harbor; before and after the urban development at the expo

1. Access to the waterfront

Previously to the creation of Parque Expo the relation between waterfront and city was contemplative, and citizens had no physical access to the river except for the Praça do Comércio and the adjacent area where the industrial port of Lisbon was never built. Through the initiative of the Port Authority, Doca de Santo Amaro became also a place for people to ‘flirt’ with the river. The Expo’98 brought the most expected opportunity for the city to re-establish an interrupted relationship with the estuary (see plate 4). The site of The World Exhibit was located at the northern limit of the city of Lisbon and it stretched over the next municipality. It quickly expanded from a 50 acres development to a 330 acres one with approximately 4 km of riverfront.1 Cabral and Rato (2001, 506) explain that

‘As a process, the Expo’98 project had a discretionary nature in regard to the decision making, and it excluded the local communities interests, which have not been listened to. The same thing is happening with the new national urban program known as POLIS. Such a process represents a step backwards in the progress made relating to the legislation and the planning system which declare the rights for the public to participate, to be informed and to present their views, and they also promoted innovation regarding the plan execution which is carried out under permanent evaluation and follow up.’


Expo’98 is similar in size to other waterfront redevelopments, such as Rotterdam, Kop van Zuid project – 308 acres; Yokohama, Minato Mirai 21 project – 460 acres; Sidney, Darling Harbour – 148 acres.


It was a kind of authoritarian response to the way the city is regenerated nowadays, as we live in a period when it is not possible to have absolute control over the process of making the city.

The complexity caused by private and public entities acting at the same time on the waterfront is such that in Minneapolis, for instance, the Mayor created a non-profitable organization to lead the process of urban regeneration. This organization, called the Saint Paul Riverfront Corporation, has a large and diverse board of directors that represents all sectors of the community, including city, county and state authorities, community and neighbourhood associations, foundations, businesses, companies, the Saint Paul Port Authority, the Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce and the Capital City Partnership. Through the active committee participation, board members assess key opportunities, set priorities and channel their passion and expertise into initiatives that are central to the rebirth of the city as a whole. ‘The mayor led an effort to develop strong organizational relationships between interest groups, because he believed relationships are better than rules’(Seeb, 2003). The mayor tapped into the community interest and enthusiasm for riverfront development, called a group of civic leaders to participate, and gained financial support from cultural foundations, corporations and individual donations. 2

2 The Saint Paul Riverfront Corporation Board of Directors includes: Minnesota Historical Society, City of Saint Paul, Unity Avenue Associates, Metropolitan Council, Ramsey County, Minnesota Life, University of Minnesota, Port Authority, Minnesota Wild, MN Legislature, City of Saint Paul, Independent Business Owner, Writer, Hotel and Restaurant Employees International Union, Civic Leader, Trust for Public Land, Saint Paul Pioneer Press, Johnson & Morrison, Xcel Energy, 3M, The Lander Group, Inc., U.S. Bancorp,Warland Singers, Bain Companies, Strategic Management Resources Inc., McKennesey Management Company, Jefferson Lines, Mairs & Power, Inc. In addition to the above partners other are listed below to show the extent of the community’s participation: Bicycle Advisory Board, Capitol River Council, Capitol Area Architectural and Planning Board Dayton's Bluff District Four Community Council, District Energy, East Side Neighbourhood, Development Corporation, Friends of the Mississippi, Friends of the Parks and Trails of St. Paul and Ramsey County, Great River Greening, Lowertown Redevelopment Corporation, Metropolitan Council, Metro East Development Partnership, National Park Service - Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, Neighbourhood Development Alliance, North End Area Revitalization, Phalen Corridor Initiative, Public Art St. Paul, Riverview Economic Development Association, Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce, Saint Paul Convention & Visitors Bureau, Saint Paul Heritage Preservation Commission, Science Museum of Minnesota, Swede Hollow Neighbourhood, Trust for Public Land, West Seventh / Fort Road Federation, West Side Citizens Organization.


In Lisbon several public entities controlled, owned or had legal rights over the Expo territory, although most of it was port area. In other Mediterranean Port Cities the problem was though differently. In fact, Bruttomesso explains that the Italian law regulating ports was profoundly altered in 1994. The new law introduced a clear distinction between the competences of public authorities and private sector. The Port Authority kept the programming and control scopes, held financial autonomy and remained under the Government responsibility. The commercial operation of the port activity was transferred to private companies. The legal instrument that separated powers allowed the execution of plans under the joint coordination of the municipalities and Port Authorities for the redevelopment of waterfront areas in Italy. In Lisbon, some argue that the Port Authority acts as an institution that restrains municipalities greed for land located at the waterfront, because some municipal authorities aim to obtain fast revenues from land and building taxes.

For a century citizens were denied access to the riverfront to the point they have forgotten it. Lynch (1960, p. 62) says the ‘The harbour front, was also generally known, and remembered for its special activity. But the sense of water was less clear, since it was obscured by many structures, and since the life has gone out of the old harbour activities.’ Kevin Lynch description could have been applied to the site where later Expo’98 was held, and is still valid for the remaining port area along the old town.

2. Financing and social integration

Expo’98 started with political decisions that created unique conditions for the event of the World Fair. The political conjuncture influenced the pre-requisites defined for the future development of the Expo area. The whole operation was expected to be self-paid, and this financial strategy oriented the process. Anyway, the project was mainly financed by selling the land to developers (see plate 5). Almost half of the Expo area was property of the Port Authority who sold the land to Expo’98 for a fairly low price. The agreement was possible because seller and buyer were both public institutions and somehow controlled by the central government. However the payment was never done, and this is just a hint of the complexity that involves the whole Expo’98 case, and reveals some contradictions. 149

5. Plate aerial view of site before the demolition of the industrial facilities, during the construction for the Expo’98 and the urban design project in plan view.

Lisbon had no precedents in such matters. The experience of ‘the “free-hand” given to an administration that is in itself a public company and a political compromise, while acting as a de facto private developer, emphasizes the conflicting role of the capitalist state in urban planning’ (Cabral and Rato, 2002, 217) Parque Expo is a stock company that seeks profability. Urban land became a major source of income for public institutions involved in the process, which for the most cases had no financial means to deal with large investments. Waterfront development became very profitable, and six years after the event the price of the square meter in the area was the highest in town. In fact this could be expected in the 90s since it had been true in most waterfront developments throughout the world. However, in the 70s potential investors and developers were not so confident in similar situations. – ‘Given the financial risk associated with waterfront development, many lending institutions and investors are hesitant to participate in waterfront projects. Furthermore, the cost of regulatory delays encourages developers to follow the path of least resistance – in other words, to sacrifice project innovation and creativity by duplicating what has been approved in the past. More often than not, it is just too costly to pass a new idea through the permitting and review process’ (Wren, 1983, 46) After the Parque Expo experience any potential


developer or investor can be certain of obtaining financial profit from waterfront developments.

Developers face great difficulties with Portuguese municipalities, which have in most cases contradictory planning regulations, and consequently are permeable to corruption. In fact municipalities are ranked as the most corruptible governmental institutions. To attract investors, Parque Expo was given administrative independence from Lisbon and Loures Municipalities, in order to create exceptional procedures for the approval of urban plans and construction permits without the usual delay. Cabral e Rato (2002, 215) describe that ‘These conditions contrasted with the normal running of a municipal department for the submission of planning applications. Of course, for developers and builders the speeding up of the process meant significant financial savings.’ It was a quick way to skip a major problem for a particular case without solving it nationwide. In fact the efficient proccess leading to the approval to construct new buildings attracted major investors who actually made their business in a short term. This is one of the reasons why the Expo urban development exceeded all the previous economic forecasts. In the proccess of attracting investors and at their request, the Expo granted the licence of 65 000 m2 for a shopping center concentrating two thirds of retail shops and restaurants in the very central part of the site. Thus street life is restrained in its commercial nature.

The improvement of the procedure proved to be economically successful, but the flow of investment is not necessarily directed to minimize social differences. On the contrary, as João Cabral (2002, 221) points out ‘Parque Expo did not take the social characteristics of the surrounding districts into consideration. They were more concerned with the development of the riverfront than with the economic and social history of the eastern zone.’ […]‘Another argument points to the limited level of the development of social infrastructure such as buildings and facilities, these are low in relation not only to the needs of the new housing development, but also to those of the large, poor, surrounding communities.’ The financial investment oriented by profitability in the short term imposes specific behaviours which clash with the way of living of economically less favoured groups dwelling around the Expo area. The Parque Expo residents, whose majority belongs to the upper middle class, have other social expectations which are very different from the surrounding communities ones. 151

It was neither written nor determined to isolate the area, but the idea gradually took shape, and the decisions that were taken have been quietly ‘misguided’ by the will to separate the Expo area from the surrounding neighbourhoods. And the actual situation is a physical representation of social segregation. As Duarte Cabral de Mello (2002, 63) points out that ‘To achieve this not only the barrier formed by the railway line separating the Parque Expo from the western quarters was not removed, but also the links between the existing urban fabric and the new area were reduced to the minimum, and additionally the road traffic network was designed in a way that messes the transversal traffic. […]So, instead of the expected continuity of the city, an urban insularity curiously installed itself becoming a standard acting at several levels, and it finally imposed the third world model of a private condominium where only the electrified fences are missing.’ Public spaces that were design from the beginning to be unusually generous and well equipped became dysfunctional and depreciated.

Mello, who was the architect responsible for three-dimensional development plan of the northern part of Parque Expo, first proposed to divert the railway line 60 meters towards the river. This railway line, which previously bordered the western side of the area creating a barrier, would be on a lower level. Therefore the planned area would integrate a continuous urban grid, with no barriers on either side of it and uninterrupted linked to the surrounding neighbourhoods. Such a solution represented an enlightened strategy to prevent the exclusion of the populations dwelling in the adjoining urban areas. But the plan was not approved. On the other hand, one bridge proposed in the approved plan was never built and thus the cut effect of the existing barrier prevailed. Mello (2002, 62) comments that ‘Since the beginning, Expo’98 operation followed urban game rules that severely hindered the proclaimed intent to improve the city. […]Although it was unthinkable to carry out the operation at no cost at all (there is no notice of a town to have paid itself in one generation), it immediately became handicapped by the wish to isolate the new modernised area, thus benefiting the richer strata of the population and protecting them from the bad neighbourhood of the surrounding quarters.’

Near Parque Expo, the Olivais neighbourhood is an urban successful experience in terms of social integration of different groups. The urban plan for Olivais followed a strategy that discarded the logic of fast return of the financial investment in favour of the logic for a democratic city. 152

3. The role of public spaces

The city of Lisbon had never created so many public spaces all at once. Manuel Salgado was the architect who coordinated the design of public spaces at the Expo’98. The generosity of the space was a requirement for the visiting crowds attending the exhibition, and Salgado argues that the public spaces had to be that way. This formula proved to be successful, revealing that an urban design based on a concept of environmental quality, and making use of creative interventions in the public sphere is well accepted. Somehow the urban design strategy for the Expo site brought an addedvalue consisting of large public spaces that are now availabre for the users. In a detailed analysis about such a strategy, Brandão (2002, 131) argues that ‘public space is an eloquent manifestation of urban life, life of people in the space between buildings, translated in the infinity and diversity of contacts in which city is manifested as a part in our lives. Public space is not only the biggest attraction of the city but also the place of the other.’ Artists intervention in the public space emerged as a key factor for the creative use of the urban habitat by the public.

Expo attracted millions of visitors during the exhibition period, and keeps receiving a large number of visitors who come to the site to enjoy wide and safe public spaces, which unlike any others in the city of Lisbon are unusually vast, well equipped and constantly maintained. Harvey (1990, 91-92) considers that ‘Cities and spaces now, it seems, take much more care to create a positive and high quality image of place, and have sought an architecture and forms of urban design that respond to such need. That they should be so pressed, and that the result should be a serial repetition of successful models (such as Baltimore’s Harbour Place), is understandable, given the grim history of deindustrialization and restructuring that left most major cities in the advanced capitalist world with few option except to compete with each other, mainly as financial, consumption, and entertainment centres. Imaging a city through the organization of spectacular urban spaces becomes a means to attract capital and people’[…]. The importance of urban quality became a global trend under the pressure of the mundane realities of capitalism, but nevertheless the clues so offered may be turned to 153

advantage if seen in a creative way for possible functions and fictions to reproduce social life. The pedestrian traffic in the city centre of smaller Portuguese towns is gradually taking over, but the same is not happening in Lisbon. Pedestrians and drivers fight a long term battle, and for peace to be restored strict regulations are required. The offer of the public space could be described as Jan Gehl (2000, 12) puts it when speaking about his own town ‘On a summer weekday thousands of local people take advantage of the many opportunities the city offers for recreational urban activities. Children play, young people skate by on roller blades and skateboards, while street musicians, artists and agitators of many kinds attract crowds. (…)The city’s new car-free space is used for a special form of social recreation, urban recreation, in which the opportunity to see, meet and interact with other people is a significant attraction.’ The importance of protecting urban life from the invasion of automobile became more present throughout the process involving the Parque Expo. As shown in the map below (see plate 6), the road network obeys to a grading criterium: the further way the roads get from the river the larger they are and thus carry more traffic. The street along the water is exclusively for pedestrian use; paralel to this one, the Expo main road (Alameda dos Oceanos) has four lanes; the busiest street (Ave. D. João II) has 8 lanes; past the railway station, there is the freeway. Six years after the Expo’ 98 event, and against all odds in a city where the use of the automobile is still a priority, the central avenue (Alameda dos Oceanos) remains closed to road traffic. The reasons for such an unusual situation derive from a series of circumstances, and there are different opinions about the matter. In this case pedestrians were given priority over automobiles due to factors that surpassed the urban design itself. It seems, however, that marketing interests had a word to say once the agents involved have received evidence from ‘consumers’ that a traffic free environment was more attractive to users envisaged as ‘active members’ of a consumer society.

Contemporary urban culture which tries to use public space in a creative way (see plate7) creates different levels of circulation and blur the ‘cut off effect’ produced by the contemporary means of transportation, together with the capitalist logic and clever marketing aimed to profitable exploration have brought the waterfront developments to a successful stage in the financial realm. 154

6. General plan of the urban scheme at Parque Expo and the location of parking areas. It is relevant that only one parking area is located at the waterfront, the others are located further inland and are underground parking. This organization eliminates the presence of cars thus previliges the presence of pedestrians at the river front.

7. Cross section of Ave. D. João II at the train station and the shopping mall ilustrates schemeticly separation of cars at the street level and pedestrains that can go across at three different levels. Such spacially complex solution is successful in exploring the three dimension quality of public space, in which ‘urban barriers at the ground level’ are integrated in urban life.

The traditional uses of public space were till recently, and still are in many places, the following ones: meeting place, marketplace and traffic place (for people and vehicles). In almost all Mediterranean water cities ‘downtown is related directly to the waterfront, and that represents the most ancient part of the town. […]The square facing the water was one of the favourite places for citizens to meet, to discuss and walk together’ (Brutomesso, 1997, 121). The Parque Expo waterfront is a space of transition that hosts a number of social and cultural events, created to attract new people, mainly visitors. Its open spaces generate a new centrality for the city, rich in functions, that tries to reinterpret the ancient image of the port area as an urban heart, centre of activity open to all. Nevertheless, the Expo site can not fulfil the function of a true meeting place which is still alive at the waterfront areas connected to the historic centres of cities.


The marketplace is now replaced by the mall, shifting what used to be public space to commercial space, (Crawford, 1992, 18) whose artificiality and consumerist purposes constitute an hostile environment to the interaction of the different strata of the population that, in spite of everything, flows to it in a kind of leisure peregrination. There is no alternative – the local commerce (street shops) is almost absent from Parque Expo. By contrast, in San Francisco the waterfront development has a marketplace for farmers to bring their produce and trade them without the costs of a rented space.

4. Cultural significance

Currently a high value is placed on heritage which became the means to define cultural identity. Heritage may reveal individual and collective urban experiences, however each social group selects them and reinterprets them in different ways. Charles Jencks (1994) argues that we all ‘carry around with us a musée imaginaire in our minds’, which becomes increasingly larger as individuals travel more and virtual spaces are part of our daily experience through film and media. What kind of heritage is to be preserved in industrial sites and how to deal with it are some of the questions discussed by Hewison. In his book The Heritage Industry the author states that ‘the past is the foundation of individual and collective identity, objects from the past are the source of significance as cultural symbols. Continuity between past and present creates a sense of sequence out of aleatory chaos’ (Hewison, 1987).

The physical space that we inhabit has the capacity to influence and determine one’s perception of the environment, while ‘structures as piers, cranes and barns are testimonies of an industrial era. This heritage, now useless for the ports, may increase the cities wealth, if those structures are reused for other purposes’ (Brutomesso, 1997, p. 123). As we have seen in the Japanese case, architecture is intimately related to cultural issues that lead to the preservation of formers presences and to the reinvention of their use. Heritage is seen within an evolutionary process that transforms and reinterprets. On the other hand, nostalgia tends to freeze evolution. Conservative and protectionist positions do not welcome change that is, nevertheless, inevitable. Some authors compare cities to living organisms in permanent evolution, that have an unpredictable behaviour which nobody really controls. 156

It is a common idea that the cultural significance of the waterfront is intimately related to the identity of port cities, but according to Ariane Wilson (2001, 34) this remains an illusion. ‘Projects are more likely to reflect fantasies related to the sea or to ships than the reality of port activities. Worse still, intentions of this kind often caricature the port in an attempt to link it to the city.’ Wilson is one of the authors who agree that the urban design applied to waterfront renovation became a standard model importing ready made urban solutions. A model which is widely repeated with minor adjustments becoming a reflex of blind globalisation. Alternatives to the standard model are formulated based on critical reasoning. Remesar, for instance, says that this ‘is only possible if we surpass the physical regeneration of the urban fabric. Symbolic and negotiated contributions to the city are crucial, so the importance of trying to think public art and urban design projects and policies from a new perspective’. Such new perspectives are only possible through another way of thinking, with the active contribution of a larger number of participants in the process of transformation. It is not a new plan that should be produced, but a new frame of thinking instead. Each section of the port area raises different problems related to the pre-existing conditions that are specific to each site and that have unique potential. In that sense Matias Ferreira concludes that ‘there isn’t yet a convincing project for the city. Lisbon as a water city is still an utopia, a no place, a paradox to the large and original urban sea.’

The Expo experience had a considerable cultural impact. It became a reference to copy in new coming projects. Although the attempt to actively relate the city with the river was well succeed, all ‘previous lives’ of the territory have been erased (see plate 8), and the transformation wiped out testimonies from the past that have given the site its identity. ‘One of geography’s main subjects, as it tries to explain the man-made landscape (physical, economical, cultural) is to develop a kind of a “landscape memory” – stratified, and by that way “historical” and “economical”, through the identification of resources, whether they be vineyards, pinewoods, mines or the means of communication. The final perception of the “humanized landscape”, is the urban construction.’ The process at Expo’98 started from the concept of ‘terrain vague’ which requires the elimination of past traces, and this will originate a sort of blank in the minds of the future generations. Rehabilitation that mixes former and new presences not only maintains the ties between past and present generations but it also contributes to preserve signs of identity carrying them into the future. 157

8. Aerial view of Villa Expo, Zona Norte, PP4, by Cabral de Mello and M.M. Godinho de Almeida. Landscape project is designed by João Nunes + Hargreaves Associates who also design the Crissy Park in San Francisco.

9. View of Jardim Garcia de Orta by J. Gomes da Silva, L. Cheis, R. Salema, J. Adrião e I. Norton (1998) five rectangles represent the ecossystems of Macau; Goa; S. Tomé; Azores and Africa.



Section II – Other Case Studies

Chapter 6 –Urban case studies


Chapter 7 –Case studies of smaller dimension




Chapter 6 –Urban Case Studies

Relocation of port facilities


San Francisco






Relocation of port facilities

Regarding the city-port relations there are two cities in particularly that bear strong resemblances with Lisbon. The criterion we applied to the selection of the two large case studies presented, Barcelona and San Francisco, was the successful process of transformation of their waterfronts. In both cases the city-port relationship has been deeply changed over the last three decades. They are both considered reference cases in the contemporary debate on waterfront development in historical context which is related to the port area of Lisbon. Both cities have been involved over long periods of time in the transformation of their historical port areas, and have been engaged on a public debate that has been rich and fruitful. They include urban operations similar to the ones that may occur in Lisbon.

San Francisco waterfront renovation started much earlier, in the late 50s, and it is referred to as a successful transition carried out in North America. The similar geographic features of the San Francisco Bay and the Lisbon Estuary make this analysis particularly relevant because both industrial ports were created around the same time, and have the shape of extended strips of landfill placed between the city centre and the water. The industrial ports had specific technical necessities that needed to be adapted to the new system of container terminals, and in both cases Port Authorities had to struggle with this transformation. The geography, the topography, and the features of the Bay Area are very similar to the ones existing in the Estuary: the physical conditions limited the access of container vessels as these require deeper waters, and consequently the port activity became restricted. Ports for container terminals depend directly of intermodal platforms located next to it. The Port of San Francisco did not have the means neither the necessary surface available to be adapted to the new requisites. The intensive use of containers modified the maritime activity, and as a result the Port of Oakland on the other side of the Bay is increasingly growing while the port of S. Francisco decays. Large areas of land have been reclaimed in the Port of Oakland to place container terminals and large intermodal platforms next to several railway lines and a direct freeway access for trucks transporting containers.

Barcelona is different. It was selected due to the cultural resemblances with Lisbon in the context of Iberian port cities. The Port of Barcelona is expanding to double its 164

capacity, and is in the process of constructing new landfill for more container terminals. The map (plate 1) shows the relation between the old port, Port Vell that was very active during the industrial period, the operating new port that has expanded, and the future port that will have new terminals and intermodal platforms in order to meet the growing containerization activity. Initially, ports were adjacent to the city centres – the industrial port workers lived in the surrounding neighbourhoods. But larger surfaces needed by container terminals had to be found away from the cities, which also allows for the operators to profit from areas of low urban density. These new ports also need flexible hinterland connections. The map of Lisbon estuary shows the plan of the new container terminal at the mouth of the river, which presents good conditions for mooring and loading for deep sea vessels, although investments in the railway/freeway accessibility were needed. Map 2 shows the container terminal that APL intended to construct and that was included in the 1º Plano EstratÊgico 1990-1992, but its construction seems most unlikely to be carried out.


2 – Map indicates the industrial port (red), the linear port along the city of Lisbon. Container terminals in operation (white) are located along 28 acres at Alcântara and Santa Apolónia. The new Trafaria container terminal (gray) was never been built (APL published a drawing in which the terminal may be extended up to 500 acres). The new terminal would be constructed over landfill in the same site where sand was removed 100 years before and used for the construction of the industrial landfill. The Trafaria terminal would reshape the mouth of the river to its original morphological shape.


3 – Map indicates the industrial port (red) along the city of San Francisco. On the other side of the Bay, new container terminals (white) were constructed on landfill. The Port of Oakland with its previous 665 acres expanded over former naval property with another 520 acres. These terminals use large surfaces and are connected to intermodal platforms of rail and road networks.


4 – Map shows the old port (red) transformed for public use. New container terminals (light gray) are under construction. The port area (white) occupies 786 acres and will double its surface towards south. Additionally, new intermodal platforms for railway and roadway transport systems are being built there.


Comparing Lisbon and Barcelona

Lisbon and Barcelona are like twin sisters in several aspects: they are both capitals located on the coast, and port cities. In the Iberian Peninsula only few cities have so much in common, and emanate such a similar vibration. Getting a breeze from a calm sea, they both face south. Walking through a city, passing by its facades, experiencing it is to feel its “soul”. The urban design and public spaces are influenced by the territory topography, geometry and regulations. There is an overlapping of plans that created a fragmented urban fabric conditioned by restrictive laws. Such territories have memories of unfinished plans that influence decisions. Cities grow like a living organism with a surprising behavior. The analysis and report of their development are carried out in order to structure and if possible to control the city behavior, but its movements remain unpredictable. A city being such a complex reality it is difficult to clearly detect “cause and effect”. Nevertheless there are known strategies that influence a part of their evolution and make it more predictable. Lisbon and Barcelona have grown around the peripheral areas during the last decades, but it is in the historical center, which includes the port, that both towns evolution took a different direction in the last couple of decades. Remesar (2001, 9) comments the similitude between Lisbon and Barcelona: “Anyway, the parallelism between the two cities was and is alive. In 1905, León Jaussely, a French Beaux Arts architect, proposed in his ‘connections plan’ for Barcelona the creation of a promenade endowed with monumental elements. Although with other expectations, the plan Le Corbusier - GATPCPAC 1934, well-known as Pla Macià, outlined the need to build up a modern “city” in the port front of Barcelona, by means of the displacement of the port toward the western sector of the city. In Lisbon, the PGUEL (General Plan of Urbanization and Expansion of Lisbon) in 1938 launched the idea that the tendency of the past years, those of tracing the city in opposed direction to the river must be corrected. As much in the Lisbon as in the Barcelona of the thirties it starts to be configured the ‘idea’ of opening again the city to the water.” Further on his writings Remesar argues that in both cities the original relationship between the port and the city broke down because of industrialization, which started at the end of the 19th Century. A new territory was created through landfill for the port operation. And the main effect of this together with the related industry and transport system was a physical segregation between water/port activity and city/urban life. 169

Comparing Lisbon and San Francisco San Francisco has geographical and topographical conditions very similar to Lisbon. Both are water cities that had extraordinary natural conditions for mooring and the shipping industry. Following the decline in their port activities, the Bay area and the Tagus estuary became central voids surrounded by urban areas. The process of transformation started long ago for the Port of San Francisco. Regarding the waterfront revitalization, Boston, Baltimore and San Francisco were the first main cities that saw the dawn of such renovation process in North America (Hoyle, 1997, 151). In view of the close physical characteristics of the Californian city and the Portuguese capital, San Francisco stands as an important reference for Lisbon waterfront future transformation. Besides, in San Francisco the transformation started as early as 1961 (plate 5), so there is an accumulated experience, a maturity revealed in the implementation of the renovation process that makes it almost a role model worldwide. San Francisco waterfront is also thought to be by some authors, the most sophisticated form of urban design in America.

Authors, such as Raymond Gastil (2002) and Hans Meyer (1999), have different but complementary approaches about the San Francisco waterfront redevelopment. Meyer explains that the City Planning Department created a framework in 1971 for designing guidelines that included ‘scenic elements and transparency of the cityscape’. Even before, in the report dating from 1969 presented by the City Planning Department, areas for ‘overlooking’ and major views at the water level were indicated. Nevertheless the cityscape has changed with the construction of several skyscrapers during the 1970’s and 80’s. On the other hand, Gastil (2002, 96) defends the importance of the community political battle throughout the process, and explains that “San Francisco has heavy public involvement in waterfront planning and design decision making, usually more confrontational than the polder model of the Dutch(…) San Francisco has laid down the armature for future architecture and urban experience that is unquestionably pleasurable and could be culturally exhilarating.” In San Francisco the dialogue between Municipality and Port Authority promoted change, and a good one at that. This started at a political level, and contributed greatly to alter and reorganize mechanisms of power and planning policies of town management as the port joined the Bay Conservation and Development Commission. 170

5. First plan for San Francisco waterfront renovation in 1961.


6. Aerial view of the city of San Francisco and the industrial port area in the 1980s.

San Francisco



The barrier


Decline of the port and alternative plans


Recent strategies


Ferry Building

186 172

Jurisdiction The city of San Francisco, like other port cities throughout the world, had to rethink the role of the port authority that controls the activities of the industrial port. The territory was artificially created over the Bay through land reclamation. The interconnectivity between two different geometries – piers/city greed – is made by the Embarcadero which is the main road along the port area. The frontier line between city and port is determined by the city blocks not by the road. The red line represented in the map on the right shows the limit between city and Port Authority territory.

6 - Map showing the city and the port of San Francisco legal division of the land.

7 - Map of the city and the port of Lisbon.


The PASF has control over the land that is located between water and city. This land separates San Francisco from its bay. There are two jurisdictions, therefore different regulations apply on each side of the red line. The administrative power is divided on the map and creates enormous difficulties in the conciliation of interests.

6. (cont.)

7. (cont.)


The red line in the image on the right separates the area under the jurisdiction of the port authority from the city of Lisbon. It traces the ancient territory before the creation of the industrial port. It circles the city perimeter. The land between water and the red line is landfill dating from the 1900s. Since then the city lost access to the water. The railway line took advantage of this new city edge and came all the way to a very central area of the city. The main road parallel to the railway line did not circle the city until the 1940s when another landfill (Av. Arsenal) came to link the western side of the port to the eastern side. In Lisbon waterfront the geometry of the urban fabric does not relate with the geometry of the port. In fact these neighboring territories did not maintain a continuous urban relation. Due to the functional procedure, the port has a longitudinal distribution of activities, not a transversal one. The sense of gated city was brought about by the modern means of transportation. The nearest pedestrian passage at the ground level is 2.9 km away from the railway terminal station.

8 - Evolution of City and Port through gradual landfill that transform the features of the waterfront.


The analysis of the port-city transformation in San Francisco followed a similar criterion. The legal division of the jurisdiction over the territory, the inevitable barrier and how it evolved were taken in consideration. Once the city experienced a decline in the port activity, plans for an alternative use of the port area were proposed by the San Francisco Port Authority. Those plans evolved from proposals of high urban density to ideas favoring public space and industrial heritage. The implementation of these more recent strategies had good results, such as the Ferry Terminal renovation that was completed in 2003.

San Francisco waterfront renovation, being a pioneer case that experiences many alternatives, the understanding of its struggles and successes is crucial to elaborate better strategies. It has been a long process in which the image of the final result is less important than the process itself. The difficulties for PASF started with the geographical conditions, such as the network connection (the railway was on the other side of the Bay), lack of space (the port squeezed between water and city) and low tide (since the ships size increased enormously). In San Francisco, as Wilson (1986, 57) points out, “the waterfront was progressively reconstructed with land reclamation and with the six mile waterfront of finger piers (mainly supported platforms, except for pier 45) and wharves.”

The Barrier

Referring to waterfronts as a urban priority, Joan Busquets says that the recent relation between Port/City has been disrupted by the presence of the modern massive infrastructures, mainly highways and railways. The infrastructures for the contemporary means of transport were frequently constructed at the city edge. In most cases it is not a physical edge but a jurisdictional limit where the administration and political control of the city end and the port authority starts. For the local community, such subtlety is not clear. The power over the territory is marked by an invisible line. In 1956 a decision to build an overhead two-level Freeway along the Embarcadero, between city and the port, created a great impact (plate 9). “In San Francisco, public recognition of the impact of a waterfront expressway resulted in a strong political movement.(…) In a well organized campaign, voters forced the Board of Supervisors to veto all further freeway plans. The 176

Embarcadero Freeway was left unfinished, with stub ends at mid-waterfront, and was never extended all the way along the waterfront to the Golden Gate Bridge as has been originally planned.” (Wrenn, 1983, 46)

The Freeway favored movement to other parts of the city, while local access to the waterfront was compromised. Both pedestrians and vehicles passing around the columns and crossing below the elevated structures. The Freeway ‘although halted from completion by community protests, introduced a new era to the San Francisco waterfront, exemplifying the attitude that the waterfront was a service area rather than a focal point of activities’ (Dramoy & Fisher, 1997, 41). In the sixties, the city was involved with strong political activism. However protest was controversial and therefore did not accomplish to tear the double deck barrier down. There was no alternative and it was useful for drivers and necessary for the city. It was only in the eighties that clear alternatives were defined and submitted for public discussion.

10 – Above: Section of elevated Embarcadero freeway. The new construction on the water had the same height of the freeway. Below: Plan shows urban (residential, offices and mixed-use) development on the waterfront next to the Ferry Building, by Bolles Associates,1967


Anthony Wilson (1986, 57) argued that “elevated freeways and desolate parking lots divided the public spaces from the waterfront which was also obscured by the Embarcadero façade. Public concern at the effect of the elevated highway was expressed so strongly in Freeway Revolt that the new plans for the environmental improvement to the Embarcadero include the removal of the elevated roads.” In fact, the waterfront had been the most lively area of the city. In the beginning of the 20th century, it was the city guest room, with all the ships carrying people and goods from distant worlds. A truly cosmopolitan environment where travelers and locals exchange information. An open air street market with busy traffic all year long.

It quickly evolved to an empty space where (Gehl & Gemzoe, 2001, 13)“heavy car traffic does not coexist peacefully alongside the uses of the city as meeting place and marketplace. Uses that had been in balance for centuries were now in open conflict.” The removal of the barrier only happened following the Loma Prieta earthquake that “signaled for San Francisco a new opportunity to achieve multiple objectives related to transportation, urban design and open space.”(Dramoy & Fisher, 1997, 41) The earthquake that happened in 1989 damaged the freeway, but at that time city and port were already together searching for common goals. This collaboration has favored the argument against the whole process of reparation of the freeway structure, which apparently was not so damaged as some claimed.

At time is was announced that major investment was required to recover the double deck concrete structure, it was presented as an expensive work and city representatives argued that it was not worthy it. All the pressure that had build up throughout decades by the community and by the local administration together with the Port Authority achieved its goal and the idea to rebuild the freeway structure was abandon. The city representatives dropped it, and choose to remove the physical barrier. When the city faced the waterfront without the barrier the whole area started a new period. People got the perception that the site had changed and this would influence the coming projects for the waterfront.


Decline of the Port and alternative plans

As the PASF kept losing every year an increasing percentage of the activity to the Port of Oakland, new plans were developed to challenge the future of the port activity and make use of the territory. Such plans shifted from highly profitable high rise to privilege public use of the waterfront. ‘The existing functions would be encouraged in a way that aims to improve the environmental qualities. This would allow a promenade to extend from Piers 7 to 24, with the visual interest […] and moored pleasure craft’ (Wylson, 1986, 58). San Francisco has been dealing with waterfront renovation for forty years, some options were carefully conducted, others were not. It is not a linear process and it is not finished. The development is environmentally concerned and socially oriented. The city relationship with water is regarded as a main opportunity for the citizens and the visitors. In the 1990’s citizens of the city voted Proposition H, which decline the possibilities to build hotels on piers and later voted Proposition R against the plans the port authority had submitted and instead choosing the centre for education about the Bay.

11. Northern Waterfront Plan (1969) Landscape and Uses


Although San Francisco is known for its political activism such demonstrations of public involvement on the future of their waterfronts are not exclusive to northern Californians.

The first major project for San Francisco waterfront describes the replacement of existing structures “with modern high rise apartments” and the transformation of the segment ceased to work as a “fragment within the city framework.” The project also proposed International Pavilion, World Conference & Exposition Centre, International Science Centre & Arts Centre. The whole strategy was based on specific projects. In 1961, a plan for fisherman’s wharf was submitted by John Bolles who argued that “zoning, always negative, is not even possibly a solution. The area awaits creative and imaginative treatment on the design level.” The proposal is one from a series of plans. Some were quite controversial, as they presented a new face for the city, towards the bay!

11. (cont.)


Then in 1969, a preliminary report by the Department of City Planning published a series of existing plans and policies that included the waterfront. The proposed downtown design plan had two high rise buildings on the waterfront. The final report addressed the Northern Waterfront area relating port and city. Established several “points of major views at water level”, more important, it presented city and port area in the same drawing. The waterfront was designed as part of the city, zoning was extended from the port authority land to the city.

Three years later another project was conceived, and it was described as follows: “the project is centered around the reuse of three piers. Pier 39 was reconstructed and contains restaurants and shops surrounded by a 24-foot-wide pedestrian walkway. Pier 41 was destroyed and replaced with a fixed breakwater and public fishing pier, and in the place of Pier 37 (destroyed by fire in 1976) a floating breakwater was constructed. Two marinas flank the main pier, one for a sport fishing fleet of 50 to 60 boats, and the other for about 250 private pleasure craft. The project also includes a five-acre public park and a thousand car parking garage located directly inland from Pier 39. The settlement of the sea lion community was unexpected. No one could have predict they would start using the area next to pier 39. Their arrival influenced widely the removal of private boats. The process of transformation, that involve cleaning and removing industrial infrastructures allowed the animals to move in and progressively use the site as their new ‘home’. Environmentalists became enthusiastic of it and actively supported ‘nature’ coming back to industrial areas. Consequently, there was a shift in the public opinion that influenced the whole process of transformation.

An elevated walkway connects the parking garage with the pier area. According to Farrell, (1980, 25) ‘The developer estimates that the planning and permit approval process for the project required five years (from 1972-77). This was a sizeable risk considering the investment had to be made before the developer actually knew whether or not the project would be granted approved.’ Fisherman’s Wharf at Pier 39 is an experience that became very popular among visitors but not really used by locals. Unlike recent projects, developed after the ‘sea lion conquest’ that are proving to be quite successful and popular among residents.


10. Deck and pier were removed to free the view

11. Balcony at the Maritime Museum to gaze at the water.

Recent Strategies

A great variety of uses are described by Wylson (1986, 61) which “include aims to diversify and expand the period of use of each sub-area, to preserve the waterfront character by prohibiting activities that preclude possible future maritime development, to capitalize on the area’s potential as a desirable living environment, to strengthen and expand the recreational character, and to facilitate the movement of people and goods but to minimize the adverse effect of traffic. The waterfront is to be made visually and physically accessible to the landward part of the city’(see plate 10 and 11). Ten years after the removal of the freeway, the San Francisco Port Authority is conducting a permanent dialogue with the city to transform the previous use of industrial warehouses into urban activities. In the site survey, we have registered that:

pier 1 – Ferry building, farmer’s market, shops and restaurants all with street access, pier 1-14 – Lawyer’s office, tennis courts across the street, pier 15-17 – transportation company, sailing program, pier 20-23 – Port of San Francisco, café and deck, pier 25-28 – Port of San Francisco Insurance, pier 29 – Zimzanne theatre, electric car rental, pier 31 – cable car charters, pier 32 – cruises, pier 33 – architect’s office, pier 34-38 – public garden and deck, pier 39 – tourism/marina, two level bridge over the road to four stories parking lot (free 2 hours) next to Academy of Art College, street theatre, pier 41 (demolished) – cruises, bike rental, pier 43 – private recreational boats, pier 45 –


Museum of the city of San Francisco, chapel, Marina – for sport fishing boats. To the west is the Aquatic park with the Maritime Museum and the Wave Organ at the end1. The leading policy includes removal of some piers, construction of a pier for public access and fishing with a promenade offering views over the bay and the city. Each section has different requirements and is dedicated for specific purposes. The projects are not generally done through zoning policies but follow architects projects or detailed design strategy to be reviewed and commented by the public. The draft of Waterfront Land Use Plan includes the following discussions: New developments to focus on and further enhance the Pier 7 public access and fishing pier. Design new seawall lot developments in a manner that respects the rich architecture in the Northeast Waterfront Historic District. Include design features in any new commercial or residential development on Seawall Lots 323 and 324 that highlight the intersection of Broadway and the Embarcadero as an entrance to Chinatown and North Beach, and as an orientation point along the waterfront. Encourage publicly-oriented recreation and entertainment activities on Pier 9 which are compatible with the San Francisco Bar Pilots Association administrative headquarters, water taxi operations, and berthing of pilot, tug and tow, and ferry and excursion boat vessels. Maintain and enhance views of the waterfront from Broadway. Design transportation access to seawall lot developments so as to minimize congestion on Broadway and the Embarcadero.” In fact, the Bay Area transportation policy has encouraged more investments on private vehicles and the use of automobile rather than other means of transport. Reversing that sense the BART (Bay Area Railway Transportation) is the exception, although Dramoy & Fisher, (1997, 41) explain that ‘the necessity for a multi-modal transportation system within our cities and regions has become increasingly apparent. The single-purpose highway facilities of the past have failed to fulfill regional mobility needs and have contributed in many cases to a deterioration in the quality of life and the urban environment.” An articulation of alternative environment friendly transport by water, 1

Though visually breathtaking, the wave organ was built not for the eye but for the ear. Created by the same people who brought the Exploratorium the organ was constructed to capture and amplify the undersea sounds of the Bay.


may connect all the settlements around the bay. The waterfront will recover its gateway character.

After all the plans and ideas have been discussed, it was with great maturity that city and port agreed to diversify uses on the waterfront which included housing. The 11 acre Pier 45, half of which is constructed on land fill contained by concrete bulkhead walls. To balance the existing uses (which generate activities during the summer, weekends and evenings) residential and office accommodation would be provided to promote activity all the year around. A high-quality environment is to be provided by public access for views of the bay (…).The proposed Hyde Street pier would have off-loading and fish-handling facilities, relocated uses currently on Pier 45, and provide for birthing along its entire length. (Wilson, 1986, 60)

13 – a. Pier 7 – fishing pier and public access/recreation.

13 – c. Electric rental car.

13 – b. Commercial fishing boats at Inner Lagoon.

13 – d. Live collection of tramways at Embarcadero.


It is clearly no longer a financial operation directed to obtain profitability from deterioration in urban quality. It is a small scale project that comes to the conclusion that permanent presence will improve waterfront life (plate 13, 14). San Francisco waterfront renovation is neither spectacular nor its projects present a surprising urban image. Nevertheless it is a thoughtful approach that was able to privilege the city access, and the user, privileging people that will beneficiate of the financial investment, instead of privileging the investment over people. The land on the water is highly valuable and developers know it. The city policy is described by Wilson as a good combination or mixture of private investment, public funding and the application of planning regulatory measures. They search for aesthetic qualities of water, topography, view of the urban landscape, by maintaining low structure near the water, establishing view corridors, retaining significant historic buildings, controlling advertising and parking, removing undesirable piers. The land, piers and wharves are not seen as immutable features but as part of an evolutionary territory that supports new needs for the city. Artificial land was constructed for specific purposes in the same way it is now being transformed for new uses.

14. Drawing produced by the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission


Ferry Building Opened to the public in 2003 the Ferry Building, which once was the city gateway, has experienced an extraordinary rehabilitation process. The project is a symbolic rediscovering of the waterfront by the city and vice versa. A couple of major goals were in view: “be a signature project which achieves a high level of public use and support; enhance the Port’s ability to undertake other projects.” A great acceptance from the public is an important aspect of the project that offers a great variety of retail shops, offices, art galleries, in an attempt to create public use throughout the day and along the week. A farmer’s market also takes place recreating the idea of urban marketplace where producers come from the countryside bringing their goods to be sold. The program has chosen activities that have meaning to the site and not solely commercially driven.

14. (cont.) defines future areas for the public to access the water, location of marinas and public squares. (1975)


15. parking lots and the number of places available.

California has a car oriented culture and San Francisco is no exception. There was available space for parking at the site. However the port authority in the ‘Draft for Public Review and Comment’ (1996) decided that would “be the responsibility of the developer selected for this effort to secure any parking necessary for the project, including securing agreements for such use. The Port after discussions with the San Francisco Planning Department anticipates that zoning requirements for parking can be reduced quite significantly based upon the City’s General Plan and ‘transit first’ policies, the concentration of transit service in the area and the extensive pedestrian use of the waterfront.”

City and port know how damaging the invasion of cars can be to the city (see plate 15) and refer to the fragile balance between drivers and pedestrians. (Gehl and Gemzoe, 2001, 13). ‘In the past, when most movement was conducted on foot, there was often a good balance between the three uses of the city. Pedestrians were able to walk where they needed to go, meeting, trading, talking and taking in the sights all in the same trip through town. The uses of the city were conducted simultaneously in the same public space.’In the 1980s Wilson argued that the ferry town area would be developed as an open waterfront, to contrast with the dense downtown development. The Ferry Building would be re-established as a major transit centre, an access point to the city, to recapture the lost identity. The land no longer needed for maritime purposes would be (Wylson, 1986, 58) ’converted to open space and water-oriented public recreation. The waterfront is to be reintegrated with the fabric of the city. It is proposed that the Embarcadero 187

should become a landscaped waterfront boulevard, with a rail transit system to reduce the need for cars and parking spaces.’ Various trams were brought from most Europeans Cities, carefully restored, and are now in use. The longitudinal movement along the edge is a smoke free, noise free and a live collection of public transportation. It privileges a transversal movement improving public access where the main road connects the waterfront using the extension of the streets into urban squares, promoting pedestrian access from the city to the water. It took forty years since the first development projects were submitted to understand the importance of the void. If it is true that the waterfront is a territory whose open spaces are often more stable and more important than buildings (Boeri, 2000, 69) one can also identify major trends related with the waterfront development extensively reproduced as described by Sieber (1999,76-77) “The major guidelines of the development programs for North-American waterfronts reflect the taste and cultures of the new and more actively involved bourgeois user groups of these sites. The flux of these users to the present day city centers shows a tendency to grow. The aim is to recreate a genuine historic ambient. This would allow people to go back to a less complex life style amidst healthy and natural environments where they could have pleasant and democratic group experiences. This type of social life based on the human factor became gradually absent from cities during industrialization. Thus, the contemporary development solutions that were found match the users cultural interests rooted in the past. Those solutions engage all contemporary tools, technologies and forms of representation in order to provide new ways to rebuild physical records or landmarks that speak of the past. This is an alternative to the North-American cultural obsession with modernity that permanently erases memories. Such cultural formulae have proven to be successful in practice, in the fields of both economic feasibility and popularity of waterfronts.� In short, San Francisco has developed an alternative to this mainstream process, here city port relations started from an urban design development for major residential, cultural, commercial but found short support. Through events, art and recreation the city connected back to the water and succeed to remove the existing barriers. There, the public have learned to enjoy the landscape and meet at the waterfront in this privileged public space. 188


16. Aerial view over the site of ‘Forum of Cultures 2004’ the year before. After the old port, the Olympic city, Barcelona continues to expand along the waterfront, through projects that create new centralities in the city.


Public spaces renovation at the waterfront


Repopulation policy


Public space as cultural reference

204 190


Public space renovation at the waterfront

In Barcelona a major urban transformation occurred under the guidance of Oriol Bohigas and that strategy was further developed by others architects, like Juan Busquets and Sola-Morales. Multidisciplinary teams designed new public spaces and redesigned existing ones involving public art. This became known as the Barcelona Model. Bohigas developed a strategy that emphasized specific projects rather than general urban planning. The traditional long-term planning considering function and area gave place to a very precise series of projects through which a kind of ‘author vision’ could be built in a given place. The projects and construction were paid by public sector bodies. This policy allowed for a rapid execution of those projects and the transformation of the city did not take very long to complete, since they were not dependent of private developers for the implementation of planning decisions. Such an active city policy aimed to bring back quality to urban life, by designing dozens of new public spaces, parks and squares. ‘Barcelona’s architects have been nothing short of pioneers in elevating public space to the level of an independent architectural field, after this discipline had all but disappear under the influence of modernism.’ (Gehl & Gemzoe, 2000, 29)

For twenty years the execution of a considerable number of projects changed the city and the waterfront. Much can be said about the Barcelona Model, but the main focus of this chapter consists in the process of transformation that took place in the old town and the old port in Barcelona. And how the evolution of the relation between city and port boosted the urban social and cultural environment and reinvented a past dignity of a degraded cityscape.

The street is of great value to downtown Lisbon because it structures public space. In Barcelona, La Rambla is the heart of the historic city. Le Meridien and the Monte Carlo hotels face one another in La Rambla, while in the nearby areas there is numerous cheap accommodation. Those two luxury hotels are located next to two important Catalan theatre houses: the Palau de La Musica and Teatro Liceu. And a few meters from there we find the big market La Boqueria. Entertainment, retail shops and accommodation are one step away from each other among offices and housing, all forming a close set sufficiently diversified to offer a live atmosphere to this historic centre. Lisbon had 192

these same characteristics: S. Carlos e D. Luis theatres are side by side, and down below we find the market. However the central historic zone of Lisbon has gradually lost its breath. The number of abandoned buildings grows every year and at the present hotel investors look for the new Avenues built in the 1900s.

During the last two decades the Catalonian capital made a series of outstanding projects that led to the renovation of public spaces. The revitalization of the waterfront was another target. To ensure an equal use of the waterfronts by their citizens, besides the construction of new housing, sport, culture and recreational precincts, the city invested on public space as the main structural element of the new areas.2 Projects such as F. Correa, A. Mila intervention in the Plaza Real in 1983 and the M. de Sola Morales in 1987 created enormous expectations in what concerns the Port Vell, the oldest port area. The city sprang up from the water edge, but in the 80s Catalan culture dealt with this contradiction: what used to be the urban core was now separating the sea from the city; during the last century the port blocked the relationship with the water, but now the area became obsolete and potentially available for new use.3 Public space investment and valorization of emptiness were the new strategies to follow.

The problems cities are facing today have nothing to do with urban growth. In fact it became important for cities to grasp the opportunity for urban renovation and restructure from old industrial obsolete infrastructures. Referring to Barcelona, the Architect Busquets (1999, 89) argues that the new opportunities are ‘where previously, urban restructuring and renewal were not applied until after the occurrence of dramatic events. (Wren in London after the Great Fire, Hebrard in Salonika, Pombal in Lisbon, Rotterdam after the second World War II).’


For further information see A transformação da frente de mar de Barcelona by Nel.lo Oriol, in A cidade da Expo’98, Lisboa 1999 3

The city of Barcelona received 54 hectares of land. This was possible due to an agreement organized by the Colegio de los Arquitectos, the Municipality, the local government Generalitat., and the Port Authority. That area was transformed through vast demolitions and the subsequent construction of important public spaces.


17. Old Port during the renovation process in 1991

18. The industrial port operating during the 1920’s

19. World trade Center restricted the public space.


Ideas take decades to be fully understood and for people to get used to them. In Barcelona, many projects elaborated in the eighties were finished in 1992, when the Olympic games took place. Others were built in the following decade. These plans required the introduction of public art programs and an active cooperation between architects and artists. The planning for the city coast called international attention. An investment in public space without precedent was made in the historic center and the old port. The resulting works are: - the pedestrian ways (portal de l`Angel, Drassanes, Conde Barcelona e Ferran), sea waterfront sidewalk ; - five more Ramblas (Catalan, Raval, Espane del Mar and Barcelona), some of which are sidewalks over the sea; - improvements in plazas (Catedral, Reial Merce, Angels, Universitat) with underground parking and automobile control. These were strategic interventions that reinvented the public space and its use. It became more alive, more dynamic, improved street life, attracting new residents and more commerce.

The strategic investment in public area started in 1979, after the first democratic elections when Oriol Bohigas4 developed a policy by which Architects were invited to participate in a process of city renaissance – a pioneering movement in contemporary urban design. His reaction towards the city policy is described by Michael Hebbert as “an excoriating attack on town planning” and he argues that “In his four years as a city functionary Bohigas aimed to desplanificar Barcelona.” At that time, there was an important political shift: the City Council’s Urban Projects Service (Servei de Projectes Urbans) initiated renewal by designing several new public spaces. During the next twenty years, twenty three projects for construction or valorization of public space were implemented in both, the La Rambla and Port Vell - the historic city and the old port area.


BOHIGAS, Oriol was the Head of the School of Architecture and was appointed new city

counsellor for Urban Design of Barcelona by the Mayor elected in 1979, in the first free elections since the Spanish civil war.


20 - Detail of the Port Vell Plan by Solà-Morales, proposed the transformation of the existing wharf (Moll d’Espanya) into an island, and the access to the mainland through a bridge.

21 - Plan of the Port Vell as approved in 1991, presents a pedestrian walkway Rambla del Mar by A. Viaplana, H. Pinõn, that is an extension of the main Rambla towards the Moll d’Espanya, and moves to give passage to the sailing boats.


The interest of these projects comes from their ability to transcend their own limits and become important elements of transformation of each neighborhood. In the process of recovering a tradition that had been forgotten for a large part of the 20th century since the invasion of public space by the automobile. The local residents were not driven out from their neighborhoods while new groups came to dwell in those same areas, and thus gentrification was avoided and part of the old character of the sites could be preserved. Manuel de Sola Morales 1987 project, whose execution was the sparkle that initiated the restitution of the waterfront to the use of the pedestrian in the area near the historic center of Barcelona. In this project local and regional traffic are separated, thus longitudinal heavy traffic moving between the port and the city is partially hidden underground, which recreates an urban balcony. Morales (1999) claimed that “culture is based on two important aspects: a cartographic culture of the territory, which is a condition for seeing and knowing the territorial characteristics of the region; and an urban planning culture, or culture of working the territory, which considers specific territorial features and uses them in the design of urban space.”(see plate 22, 23) The citizens sensorial experience of his own city is mainly based in local characteristics which they learn to appreciate and simultaneously fulfill their aspirations for the place they inhabit.

Morales was the author of one of the initial interventions of the process of transformation, introducing winds from the sea, in a city that insisted on turning its back to the sea. “Architecture was made one of the main instruments of urban policy, and numerous public spaces were created. Every quarter was to have its own “living room” and park where people could meet and talk and children could play. Characteristic of Urban policy is that public spaces spring from the need for room for people to gather in true democratic tradition.” (Gehl & Gemzoe, 2000, 28) In order to reverse the situation created since the implementation of the industrial port, Sola Morales argued that the waterfront was the city’s most explicit territorial feature and the hub of major works of urban engineering.

Given the complexity of the waterfront transformation, the Barcelona model was only made possible through an unconditional political support for the architects to coordinate the several public works to carry out their projects.


The Moll de la Fusta project was the first resulting from a process that involved several entities simultaneously. Olympic Holding (AOMSA, IMPUSA, and VOSA), The Port Administration of Barcelona, the city urban planning services, residents associations, others institutions and Urban Design and Architecture offices. The waterfront development became an allegory, representing a shift, revealing possibilities, offering a vision for the future of the city. The dreamy vision of Morales showed the port as a central open area with emphasis on visual openness, (see plate 20) and a perceptible connection between the city and the port. It started a social and cultural movement towards the sea and changed the orientation of urban development.

The territorial artificiality of the waterfront was the base of Sola-Morales proposal for Barcelona Port Vell. The pier was to be demolished in part and the remaining island, ‘floating’ in front of the city, would provide better views and a more complete understanding of its artificial condition. The island would centralize maritime activities, but such plan was never concluded. Real estate developer Enterprise Development Corporation (EDC) proposed the creation of a complete fun city on this pier, the Moll d’Espanya. A grateful Port Authority approved the construction of such a profitable investment and kept the whole pier for the creation of a new urban ‘fragment’ at the port, creating density where the dream was to create public space with strong cultural significance.

Barcelona and Spain piers, Rambla del Mar and Conde de Barcelona Avenue, and maritime side walk were built. The thorough transformation was prepared together with the Port of Barcelona Administration. They began by converting the old port into large public areas, (see plate 21) making deep modifications that recreated the boundaries between the city and the waterfront. From 1995 to 1999, with the construction of the World Trade Center (see plate 19), there was a ‘concentration of private investment consigning new business and recreational activities oriented towards consumption. In the tradition of North American Models this project clearly drives away from the experimental processes about urban planning’ (Portas, 1998, 34) developed under orientation of the Barcelona Urban Projects Services, in the eighties.

The next significant urban development is being carried out at the Besòs river, it is an urban regeneration project that involves 50 hectares occupying 2.5 kilometres of 198

coastline north of the city centre. It is a new area away from the city. This project will rehabilitate the waterfront at Besòs for the Universal Forum of Cultures to be held in 2004. It is the most important urban and architectural intervention in the city since the 1992 Olympic Games. The intervention, Forum 2004, has been planned in detail by Mayor Joan Clos and it is criticized because ‘whereas many of the 1992 projects sought continuity with Barcelona’s urban traditions, the emphasis in Forum 2004 is on a rupture with the urban grid, with signature projects by ‘star’ architects […].’ There is an exceptional concentration of architects that are known for the production of exceptional buildings. The new development does not seek to integrate but rather to create a new urban centrality. The relations between city and port are not to be considered in such developments because it is an urban expansion. The city previous experiences are not repeated, also because the new development is located far away from the city pre existent neighbourhoods. (see plate 25)

22. Axonometric of the project by Sola-Morales at the old port

23 - Harbour-front sections, from the 18th century to the 21st century.


24. General plan of the Olympic Vila designed by Oriol Bohigas. It was implemented over former industrial facilities on the outskirts of the central hub of the city.

25. At the Forum 2004 the urban flows of traffic – pedestrian, vehicles and maritime – cross at different levels so that each one continues without barriers.


The 1992 Olympic games took place in Barcelona and preparations required a lot of effort and patience of the city inhabitants. There was dust, street works, screens and more dust. Main constructions were underway and ready to transform the Ciudad de los Prodigios which became again a contemporaneous international reference (plate 24). Creating a strategy of evolution, the Barcelona Model introduced avant garde urban design ideas and has influenced the transformation of all port cities. As it is argued by Gehl and Gemzoe (2000, 29) ‘Experimentation made Barcelona an undisputed leading laboratory in the design of city spaces in terms of imagination, variation and volume of solutions. In no other city is it possible to see such a large number of innovative designs for public space.’

In Lisbon the waterfront development at the Expo’98 has similarities with the Olympic Vila in the conversion of industrial polluted areas into urban environments. The strategy used by the promoters was to built a new financial and business center with new accessibilities, a marina, hotels and other tourist facilities, an oceanarium, a thematic park, a leisure area, residential buildings: it was described as (Portas, 1998, 11)‘An image of cosmopolitism and modernity , combining references, local contexts and international styles and repeated solutions – how many times proposed by the same creators and constructed by the same builders until its becomes banal.’

Repopulation policy

To attract to and settle the population in the historic area and adjoining waterfront, two parallel strategies were followed to improve public space: pedestrian mobility and social gathering. The new urban projects brought great dynamics to previously degraded areas. This successful formula promoted investments in new buildings as well as more flexibility in reusing existing buildings. The site became the stage of a peaceful and healthy community of lower income families that already lived there, although in bad conditions, and new social groups attracted by good conditions offered by geographic centrality – all sharing the same space.

The flexibility in the regulations applied for recovering and reconstructing old buildings attracted new residents that wanted to live and invest in the city center. Special financial 201

conditions were also applied. The improvement of public transportation and the creation of parking areas for residents liberated some streets from vehicles. This policy allowed more people to move around without being dependant on private cars. Streets and squares were free for pedestrians, both residents and visitors. The reconstruction boom in the historic city center brought many building yards, therefore the Municipality regulated scaffolding should not occupy the public area, and had to end one level above ground – the pedestrian came first!

In the cultural Iberian context both cities, Barcelona and Lisbon, inherited heavy administrative procedures in the eighties, any project for the city and its urban space would face major difficulties to be developed because of such bureaucratic complexity. The Municipality of Barcelona, (Ajuntament) managed to conciliate different sectors making these services much more efficient. ‘Traffic, illumination, swage or green areas are no longer seen as separate elements but part of whole, that is bigger than the sum of those parts.’ In a ten years period mayor Pasqual Maragall relocated about 76% reducing the Municipality employees. Partnerships were made with other institutions and city agents, overcoming administrative difficulties.

Previously the Town Hall services would overwhelm landlords and tenants with bureaucracy. Discouraged, the potential investor would look for alternatives in the periphery. Large economic groups would rather invest on large surfaces, which were rarely available in the historic zones. This increased the number of abandoned buildings, as well as a visible degradation of the neighborhood and the public space around. Ironically the Municipality itself was a big obstacle to the investment in and consequently to the maintenance of the historic areas.

This procedure was reversed with a policy change. President Maragall policy introduced new simple procedures and more flexible regulations to attract small investors interested in renovating the central areas. This shows Barcelona’s authorities were aware that a large number of small investors generates bigger investment than a few developers with more money driven only by profit. The program “Barcelona get pretty” – created in 1986 and extended for many years – attracted a continuous flux of investments for the buildings and areas in urgent need of restoration. «In Ciutat Vella there has been a large amount of rehabilitation by private owners.(…) which made it possible to obtain loans 202

for restoration work, at rates of interest considerably lower than market rates.(‌) 80% of the investment in private restoration has been carried out on the basis of agreements (‌)Private rehabilitation work between 1988 and 1997 accounted for a total private investment of more than 14,000 million pesetas and subsidies in the form of grants of 3,150 million pesetas, affecting 14,800 commercial premises and dwellings, a figure that represents more than 20% of the private buildings in the district Investments in public security and improvement in accessibilities were equally relevant for the historical waterfront neighborhood, reversing the loss of residents registered in the eighties. Local commerce was at risk and also benefited from the waves of change.

During the same period (1980-2000), Lisbon lost about 200.000 inhabitants, and continued to loose population while new neighborhoods grew in other directions away from the river. There was not a beneficial dialogue between the Port Authority and the Municipality. During periods of economic growth big private investments are made in private condominiums and shopping centers. These constructions occupy dense urban areas near the historic center. Shopping centers duplicated the space for retail commerce. Four shopping centers, Colombo, Vasco da Gama, Alvalade and Chelas, include underground stations, connect services, commerce, entertainment and attract crowds. Flocks of people who get caught in the illusion of enjoying public space, although it is a much private one. Margaret Crawford argues that the phenomenon fulfills three important needs of our society, consumption, voyeurism, and show. The window shops define space, corridors just like streets, car free, and the show is complete with the sparking lights of a world without garbage or poverty. This is the victory of consumption as spectacle. Most public spaces either do not exist or are frequently an ambush serving commercial purposeswhich characterize nowadays situation. The worst part of form follows capitalism becomes apparent in many private condominiums as they are designed according to the developer financial interests.


26. View of the Av 24 de Julho at the aterro da Boavista area and the estuary in 2004.

Public Space as Cultural Reference Barcelona Vs. Lisbon

Up to the 1960s, in Lisbon most streets were the public space by excellence. Today they are loaded with cars. Architects, urban planners and activist citizens complain against a growing loss of public space, with parks and squares surrounded by heavy traffic ways. The investment on public space at the historic center of Lisbon has been criticized by architects like Alvaro Siza (1998, 47). ‘Nowadays there is an obsession to bring the city lively, through the creation of pedestrian ways, urban furniture, decorative pavements and all sort of other things. It seems that the city needs to be supported to be able to live. These ideas have invaded the historic centers. There are interventions in which lots of money is invested, however they are useless as well as damaging.’

Public transportation either using roadways or railways have less users, while the number of private cars increases5. Lisbon Municipality has invested more in road structures privileging the use of private cars, namely tunnels, flyovers, ring roads and avenues, for fast traffic located along the river (Ave. 24 de Julho, Ave. Infante D.


According to Inquérito à mobilidade na AML - Área Metropolitana de Lisboa (1998) individual transportation using private car(80%) register a dominant position among other means of transportation available at the AML, to access the city of Lisbon.


Henrique). The land under the Port Authority jurisdiction is currently used for port and leisure activities as ruled by Plano Director Municipal - PDM (Municipality Master Plan) which also establishes the port area can not be used for traffic network functions. APL intended to prevent that future projects included road traffic in the port area because their aim was to value their land, either for the port activity, rental spaces or the implementation of urban plans. Through this isolated measure APL was not improving the relationship between port and city and defending the city from an increasing ‘cut off effect’ barrier, but was taking care of their own interests as a future urban developer. The only transversal walk-way that was built out of the six whose construction had been projected (see the map below) is located at Infante Santo, but is not more than a sidewalk which is part of road flyover where traffic is increasing the ‘cut off effect’.

The project that was warded the first prize of the competition for the Alcântara junction redesign presents a solution focused on road and railway traffic thus driving the city further away from the river (images were shown in the introduction - plate 3, 4). The second prize was won by the team of Manuel Salgado (who was responsible for the public space design at the Expo’98) presented a project where pedestrian connections and accessibility were valued which involves a bigger investment on public space. However the policy followed in the latter proposal was rejected by APL whose preference went to the project guided by a strategy to increase traffic fluidity.

27. Section of the industrial port landfill constructed during the 1890s in Lisbon, Alcântara and Santos.


Railways and highways are elements of big modern structures which aggravate the separation between the city and the waterfront, creating a ‘cut off effect’. However in the beginning they were not meant to do so, on the contrary they were supposed to be an improvement on the city life (plate 27). The current challenge for Mediterranean cities is to eliminate the linear barriers that grew between the city and the waterfront. As argued by Busquets (1997, 39)‘The urban project should give meaning to new functions solving the conflict between a linear use of the waterfronts and the transversal accessibility from the residential neighborhoods, and to do this the crossing traffic system should lose some protagonist or should be reorganized through other solutions to avoid the longitudinal barrier.” In this sense the historic center of Lisbon, which is being freed from cars and returned to pedestrians, is gradually more distant from the river. The actions undertaken are timid, the transversal accesses to the waterfront were not built, (plate 28) the rail/road traffic increases, so the present situation is very aggressive between the industrial port and the historic city next to it.

28. Map of Lisbon Waterfront – flyovers, tunnels and walkways proposal by the Municipality and APL, 1995.


In the last twenty years a number of accidents were registered in the public space of Lisbon. There are several obstacles to achieve quality in urban space. Shopping centers create the illusion of public space. Cars took over the streets, and modern structures for the automobile deteriorate urban life. The lack of public space is such that many Lisbon citizens use Expo’98 area where they feel comfortable and safe: senior citizens can walk easily, children do not run the risk of being run over by cars and young people find space to gather. In Barcelona, many things went differently for the past twenty years, as the various strategies we have discussed were implemented and are now visible and usable. Tim Marshall, who edited «Transforming Barcelona» starts by arguing that «Barcelona has in the past 10 to 15 years become the outstanding example of a certain way of improving cities, within both this Mediterranean world and in Europe» and ends by stating that «whatever the direction taken, the action will play out in a city which was comprehensively transformed in the last quarter of the twentieth century, in one of the most sustained bursts of planning and conscious governance seen anywhere at the urban level. Probably that burst will not be forgotten for a long while. It may then generate its own legacy»

The so-called ‘Barcelona Model’ that has been a reference to other cities worldwide, was particularly successful at the old port connecting it to the historic city, but this does not mean the ‘Model’ can be borrowed elsewhere because it is a burst based on a set of circumstances that values the investment of public space in central areas of historic neighbourhoods, promote pedestrian mobility and mixture of social groups but that can not be endlessly repeated either in time or space. (plate 29).


29. Map of Central Barcelona, includes Barceloneta, Old Town and Ensanche; the large public spaces (red) created during the last twenty years; previously existing public spaces (green).



Chapter 7 – Case studies of smaller dimension

Projects of urban-port regeneration


Non-built projects


Toyo Ito – Manuel Vicente – Melnikov Foreign Office Architects – Zaha Hadid


Built projects Yokohama,



Australia Oakland, California – Bristol, England 210


Projects of urban-port regeneration

One hundred years ago the transformation of the riverfront due to the construction of industrial ports influenced new imaginative possibilities about the site. Nowadays another kind of transformation is occurring in the territory. Waterfront renovation as a global phenomena has been producing a great variety of solutions, which have a dreamy component. In this chapter an handful of selected projects are analyzed, in an attempt to extract some of the ideas that come across waterfront projects.

The selection of these particular projects (all for waterfronts) followed specific criteria which consider cultural context. In all the presented projects the fusion of a strong conceptual idea and its formal transcription is emphasized, all underline the human powerful imagination capable of transforming the territory. In spite of each of the chosen examples belongs to a different time and space, they all present clear and intense views that are challenging for the future of the city. All of these powerful proposals generate new ideas, influence future solutions and raise important issues for the present discussion about waterfront development. In this chapter we will approach some issues that may include the cultural context. The fragmentary condition of waterfronts may be improved through the creation of relations between each of the existing or former elements, thus avoiding the terrain vague strategy that is quite popular among modernists. Harvey (1990, 66) argues that the postmodernism breaks with

“the modernist idea that planning and development should focus on large-scale, metropolitan-wide, technologically rational and efficient urban plans, backed by absolutely no-frills architecture […]. Postmodernism cultivates, instead, a conception of the urban fabric as necessarily fragmented, a ‘palimpsest’ of past forms superimposed upon each other, and a ‘collage’ of current uses, many of which may be ephemeral. Since the metropolis is impossible to command except in bits and pieces, urban design (and note that postmodernists design rather than plan) simply aims to be sensitive to vernacular traditions, local histories, particular wants, needs, and fancies, thus generating specialized, even highly


customized architectural forms that may range from intimate, personalized spaces, through traditional monumentality, to the gaiety of spectacle.”

The selected projects presented in this chapter are in the domains of urban design, architecture, landscape architecture, and even of the arts. Some urban design solutions make use of the industrial legacy or of the symbolic character of the waterfront, or emphasize its historic value. The Modernists’ perception that one good plan or one strong concept would bring unity to the whole is inappropriate for the waterfront as shown by the first couple of projects presented in the chapter. The projects approach waterfronts as the core of the city, as ‘entities’ containing juxtaposed layers that reveal the fragmented character of the site and its complexity.

In his recent book Beyond the Edge, Gastil (2002) introduces the theme of waterfront with the analysis of the iconographic presence of the objects at the riverfront probably because architecture is a strong expression of individual and collective will and physical needs; architecture is one of the narrators of the city and bring art to the urban design. Being smaller, the mentioned projects require less investment and are implemented over short term periods of time, and in many cases ‘Art and Science pioneer the waterfront’ as they can be used as a basis of conceptual ideas meant for waterfront redevelopment. Gastil collects a series of examples of waterfront redevelopments that have taken place around the world to illustrate one of his statements that a new culture of waterfront design is emerging in several cities around the world. In the book the extensive references to other examples contributes to identify a set of projects that are relevant to be commented. Questions related to the philosophy of the projects in terms of art, history, social or cultural concerns are discussed individually. The same methodology is used in this chapter – all together the projects that are discussed form a gallery of examples that illustrate what we found to be the best philosophical approach regarding waterfront projects. None of them presents a complete or accurate philosophy but together they complement each other.

Some of the selected projects were never built, others are under construction, and some have been built some time ago. They all serve as short references that are a valuable contribution for the construction of the larger argument about what a contemporary project should include when dealing with the urban claim of the water. In order to 213

construct the argument of the urban expansion over industrial port landfill several case studies are mentioned because each of them deals with similar problems in different ways.

Some projects make use of the imprints on the landfill as testimonies of an industrial life that disappeared but left traces, something similar to a ‘low relief’ carved on the territory. Others develop current concepts to promote public space and value urban voids where people can meet, exchange or simply wonder to bring urban life back to that area. This concept produces buildings that ‘flow’ between city and water using the land of the industrial port. Several waterfront urban developments produced an architecture that explores the quality of urban façade. Others do not have a clearly defined façade as their aim is the creation of new morphologies on the landfill to integrate the existing barriers. The discussion is not centered on the appearance of buildings – these type of issues are not included in this work. The discussion is mainly centered on the cultural context and the formal, spatial and aesthetic implications of the building, and its contribution to the landscape, as well as on the importance of the public space. That includes a variety of indicators of artistic and cultural value but also sustainable strategies to implement a relation between city and port. Another couple of projects make use of the industrial legacy, the atmosphere of machinery, their cultural significance to trace memories of the modern period of which industrial ports are an important inherited asset. Another couple of projects use the strength of water – the primordial element in the birth of the city itself – to characterize the cultural landscape through some ‘markers’ (that a lot of times narrate the ‘past lives of the city’). The cultural influence upon the new uses that are in line for the port area are a common challenge that all waterfront developments go through.

The selected projects of architecture and landscape show the possibilities that are offered when the urban life is extended over the industrial port and reach the water. In order to formulate an hypothesis, to test whether these projects implemented or to be implemented at the waterfront are capable of improving the relation between citizens and their river, of favouring not just a claim for the water but the centrality of this site in the city.


The projects presented ahead show that the presence of designers is of main importance to bring new ideas and give physical form in a creative way, but designers do not hold the exclusivity over the transformation process. It is the community that recovers a lost relationship with the river; it is the user that has the chance to contribute to new forms of urbanity. For most cities the waterfront development is usually a long term process in which a significant number of participants are engaged. The selected projects allow the discussion of previous solutions as we are in a creative cultural moment that knows heritage is not just legacy but what we create today. Behind all the process of change, each example gives its contribution to a new physical, symbolical and visual dimension. Designers are aware of problems related to the tabula rasa model implemented at the Expo site, of the lost of references caused in a process of rupture with the port area previous memories. Most successful projects dealt with pre existing conditions and explore the potential of the site as an evolutionary process that produced new forms of occupancy. The first three urban design projects are designed by Toyo Ito (Antwerp), by Manuel Vicente (Expo’98) and the last one by Foreign Office Architects (Tenerife), respectively. The other couple of projects of buildings over the water are by Zaha Hadid (London) and by K. Melnikov (Paris). These projects were never built. Yet based upon the premise that any built project is usually limited and constrained by regulations, contractors, budget cuts, etc. In the realm of pure conceptual projects of architecture and urban design, ideas remain closer to the author’s vision, and allow a more direct reading of the intentions. Nevertheless all of them address the problems and potentialities inherent in the water edge – accessibility, frontier role, public access, construction methods, urban memories, the expressive potential of architectural objects. In the second part for projects actually built are presented and discussed. Built projects have the quality of being already tested and can contribute significantly to the present discussion on the waterfront transformation.


Non-built projects

Toyo Ito – Competition for Antwerp


Manuel Vicente – Competition for the Expo’98


Foreign Office Architects – Cruise terminal competition for Tenerife


Zaha Hadid – Habitable bridge over river Thames in London


Melnikov – Garage project over river Seine in Paris



Toyo Ito – Competition for Antwerp

Toyo Ito plan for Antwerp from 1992 is a competition entry that did not win first prize. Some important concepts are exposed in this project, Ito proposed to dig the reclaimed ground level again down to the original depth (about 8 meters) and create a subsurface park, where the docks were similar to an archaeological excavation. Many of the structures appear to be floating in the air, because the ground level is ideal for the pedestrians (see plate 1 - section). Although the proposal submitted a program indicating a precise location for specific buildings, the author says that ‘the overall concept of our plan can accommodate any type of architectural planning’ which reveals great flexibility in use and possibilities for long term solutions. The proposed rows of buildings are transversal to the river, and have different geometries and size (see plate 2 - model). Each row explores spatial qualities according to the scale of the courtyard and the relation to the green area in a multiplicity of ground levels.

1. Transversal sections show the rehabilitation of the industrial infrastructures carved in the territory the ground floor is continuous and the buildings do not create physical barriers as the space remains permeable to pedestrian movement.


2. Photography of the model submitted for the competition entry. Walkways, curved geometries and green surface - the public space, is structural to the design proposal, the program is flexible.

3. Drawing representing Ito’s design concept - privileges free access at the ground floor, creates a subsurface where the docks become archaeological excavation and are used to characterize the industrial landfill


Manuel Vicente – Competition for the Expo’98

One of discussions about waterfront development is centered on the landfill. The creation of the industrial port over landfill reshaped the city geographic limit. And now? Should the city conquer the new land? Or should we let the water come again into direct contact with the city?

The proposal for the Expo’98 site presented by Manuel Vicente challenges a couple of issues related to waterfront development. Firstly, it raises questions about the shape of the territory. The site is a recently created land, the area of the landfill was never meant to be used for urban expansion. By moving the limit between land and water the project proposes to change the shape of the territory. It is an opportunity to reinvent a spatial, cultural and social reconnection with the river (see plate 8), and thus to reunite the constructed human element with the natural one. The plan contributes for the contemporary debate about the problem of the landfill artificiality, and challenges the raison d’être of this territory to find better solutions.

Secondly, former ships are recovered and used in some of the new buildings in this project. The shipping industry is constantly evolving, consequently ships that became obsolete are disassembled and thrown into a junkyard. The re-use of ‘ready-made’ structures and existing materials dates from long ago simply because it is rather convenient. Manuel Vicente’s suggests to recycle parts of ships and use them at the world Expo site. The structure and materials of these objects carry an industrial quality, and the new inhabitable spaces explore the aesthetic of industrial machinery (see plate 7). This is a provocative proposal. Society faces a problem of over production, and to bring industrial waste to the realm of public discussion is a contemporary necessity because there is so much waste that can be reused (plate 6).

Thirdly, the project includes a critical review of the imposing presence of modern architecture and the rational urban design strategy. Vicente formulates consistent architectural ideas that are not associated to a of particular trend or intellectual movement,


4. Lisnave shipyard in the 1970s

5. Assemblage of parts

6. Boats under reparation are dismantled and put into pieces.


instead it emerges from a profound and original reflection about architecture. The proposal attempts to reinvent the human presence in the territory. A presence that is often diffuse and associated with conflicting ideas. Between chaos and order the territory shows the complexity of the landscape. – Is it a result of human needs, engineering infrastructures or financial mechanisms? There is a powerful philosophical statement in Vicente’s design proposal that questions contemporary architecture and the importance of image that are influenced by consumerist culture. Upton (1998, 288) argues that ‘the psychological meanings of consumerist images are affected by their contexts. To put it another way, consumerism works to the extend that is not rational, systematic, or transparent, that it does not make explicit promises of personal transformation, but to the extend that it offers fragmented, indirect, allusive, connections between hard goods and intangible desires.’ Vicente’s project questions the meaning of urban design at the end of the 20th century and gently deals with the Genius loci, it reinvents a relationship between land and water, mixing the industrial and the urban atmosphere.

7. Manuel Vicente’s large scale model of project submitted at Expo’98 international competition.


8. Above: three details of the study model using obsolete ships structures.


Foreign Office Architects – Cruise terminal competition for Tenerife

Alejandro Zaera-Polo and Farshid Moussavi run the Foreign Office Architects (FOA) that in several of their projects have given emphasis to the analysis of urban flows. Cars, trains, local pedestrians, tourists arriving on cruises, all merge in a scheme of an architectural program that is inscribe in a literal manner in the form of their design proposal. The project for Tenerife searches to solve the present problem between port and city relation (plates 9, 10). Instead of eliminating the barrier effect the project includes it as an extra flow and extends the city over the port area. ‘This has been fundamentally based on the manipulation of topographic conditions and infrastructural systems, rather than making a proposal of urban design interventions (…) a tectonic and topographic system capable of lending coherence to the entire port frontage.’ Urban barriers are particularly relevant when the topography is flat, to cross it the user must find another level, either a tunnel or a bridge. When the city has a dynamic topographic feature, flows tend to be three-dimensional and the urban barriers lose their impact. The city is settled on top of ‘natural’ topography while the port area is artificially created on top of landfill, flat landfill. The introduction of changes in the topography allow to include all the urban flows that cross at different levels, and extend an urban continuity for mainly two necessities:

1. The need to connect the port precinct with the urban structure, which involved resolution of the differences in alignment between the city at the lowest level and the pier platforms.

2. the need to solve the conflict between pedestrian traffic and the roadway infrastructure that passes along the length of the port required the prolongation of the urban fabric onto the port precinct.

The topographic structures extends the city over the port area at the ‘lower level of the urban façade’ but is not affecting the ‘city face’ as many waterfront projects.


9. Plan view of the port area, the Quay with Cruise Terminal and the town of Santa Cruz

10. Axonometric scheme of the platforms from the Quay bridging across to the town


This competition project is from 2003 eight years after the submission of the winning scheme for Yokohama International Port Terminal (1995) was already built. About the Yokohama project, Gastil (2002, 78) describes it in this way ‘it was not a matter of throwing out the design ideas and building a conventional structure. As Zaera-Polo puts it, Japan allows architects to evoke design throughout the construction process’. The main achievement of Yokohama project was to be constructed as the initial scheme was immaterial and challenged the common references of form including structural solution and systems of circulation. When the same team presented the proposal for Tenerife it is a more mature design that includes the previous experience and adapt the scheme to a more complex urban situation of urban frontier in which the city has a difficult access to the water. The strategy to design a continuous flow contrasts with a conventional constructive solution of pillars and slabs but as it is described by F.O.A., (2004, 126)

‘Minimal variations in the structures will make multiple conditions possible. The sectional variations in the height of these bands allow for the ventilation and sentinel illumination of spaces situated below the structure, as well as permanent physical and visual connections between the new urban spaces and the programs set below the surface.’

The project bridging across to the waterfront merges architecture and landscape architecture as one and not as separate disciplines. The mixture of infrastructure, urban flows and topographic variations brings a new solution to the waterfront common ‘cut effect’ phenomena. At the waterfront there are not just a conflict of infrastructures but also a conflict of administrative power over the land. The conflict here is emphasized by the contrast between the natural topography and the artificial flat land of the port. F.O.A proposes to solve this divorce through architectural design with an inspiring solution where new forms emerge from contemporary challenges of city and port relations. Such building design has an urban design component, becoming difficult to separate them as it integrates urban infrastructures and urban flows reorganize them and elevate them to the importance of public space. (plate 11, 12) The integration of those flows in the form of the building is a sustainable approach in the sense that a large amount of energy and urban resources are coordinated and integrated. It is a process of design that includes flows of transport, energy, traffic, visitors, and integrates public services, cruise terminal, spaces for public events, a truly urban conquest of the port area. 225

11. render image shows the interconnection between the port area and the city

12. render image with a view from the sea of the pier and the city in the back


Zaha Hadid – Habitable bridge over river Thames in London

13. Plan and model photographs, based on Zaha Hadid’s Habitable Bridge project

Zaha Hadid’s bridge over the river Thames in London present a complex scheme that results from a set of several conditioning factors; the existing flows of people, vehicles, underground, and the visual orientation presented in the urban surrounding area. All this information is registered and compressed in a bundle, revealing all the complexity and fragmentation of the data. This process is straightforward, inclusive of urban signs organized without the support of a rational synthesis, but accepting the lack of a controlled judgment about the compiled information. The gathering of different urban data is translated into an abstract form of representation, joining accurate information in a purely geometrical way. Such geometric representations become physical entities assembled through a system that superimposes and creates several layers, including the urban complexity in which the waterfront is particularly rich. The project (plate 13) emerges from a process of combining fragments existing in the site - urban features, intuitive gestures, functional requirements and memories. The proposal is rooted in the landscape, and challenges the limit between water and land extending the buildings over the water. The connection between the fragments constructs a narrative, although a metaphorical one, of the site evolution throughout the times. The project explores the site richness, and organizes objects and geometric forms, revealing the site complexity in time and space, exploring the expressive potential of architecture based on the idea of the habitable bridge.


Melnikov – Garage project over river Seine in Paris

Melnikov came up with an original idea proposing that the garage should be constructed atop a bridge over the Seine (plate 14). It would offer a monumental image to the cityscape. In 1925 modernity had made its way into people’s mind and the automobile became one of the icons of a promising future. Cars were admired and seen with a feeling of hope as the means to set people movements free. The project submitted by Melnikov included two alternatives: a minimal program and a maximal one. The patrons were left with the responsibility to choose between the two. The maximal program, shown here, consisted of two large volumes fixed at only one end to four piers soaring into the air from the middle of the river. The initial proposal did not have the extra structural elements: the Atlantids that were added by Melnikov in response to the strong criticism concerning the submitted structure. ‘If they are ignored, as they should be, it can readily be seen that in this structure Melnikov was creating not merely a functional garage but a great sculptural monument to industrial France.’ The futuristic proposition made use of cutting edge technology. The challenge of this provocative project goes beyond the theme of automobiles and garages, it mainly focus on the presence of exceptional architectural objects that characterize the cityscape. In this case Melnikov chose the river, with the water or natural element, to construct over it and emphasize the human presence in the territory.

14 – a. Section of parking garage for 1000 vehicles, Constantin Melnikov (1925)


14 – b. Perspective drawing by Constantin Melnikov (1925) of the second variant of Parking Garage for 1000 vehicles.


Built projects



Kishamichi promenade


Sidney, Promenart program


Turpin & Crawford


Robin Backen


Oakland – Artship Foundation


From vessel to building


Bristol – SS Great Britain


Progressive heritage



15. Plan view of Dry Dock #2 - Dockyards Garden.



Yokohama is an industrial city that grew quickly. It is an exception to the slow evolution of Japanese cities. This city has uncharacteristic working class buildings mixed with industrial zones. The port of Yokohama is the largest one in Japan and it serves Tokyo. The city of Yokohama is shifting from an industrial to a more competitive eclectic city. The major new waterfront development in Yokohama is Minato Mirai 21 (MM21). It consists of buildings for the 21st century financed by both private and public sector investors. Its transformation began in 1983. MM21 is built on former industrial sites, as well as new landfill. The port area was created by artificial land and recent transformations continue the process of conquering land to the sea. Minato Mirai includes, cultural and recreational facilities as well as commercial and residential because it is clearly a new centrality. The population for the whole area is expected to be 190,000 people working there and 10,000 living there. It is conceptually and physically a distinct site from the rest of the city. The conversion of the largest industrial port of Japan into an accessible area contributes to the worldwide debate among scholars about waterfront development.

The most relevant and prominent aspect of the Yokohama waterfront renovation is the preservation of dry docks that inevitably connect the visitor to the genius loci, that is to say to the soul of the site. The port built by the end of the 19th century has developed a powerful presence infusing an industrial atmosphere into the city in a way without precedents. Some authors captured this atmosphere, and speak about the physical marks it left in the city and are now obsolete saying that (Fowler & Boniface, 1993)‘A preserved structure can be viewed as a sculptural object or a functional container. It can be approached and examined in detail or stepped back from and seen in a larger context. This physical artifact from earlier times may only hint at the rich history behind it.’ Large ships required big docks and piers. Trains and ships met at these crossroads of industrial storage, transformation and transportation, reinventing the relationship of the city with waterways. Such areas were closed to the general public but influenced our way of understanding the relationship between the water and the city. Water is a structural and structuring condition for the city. Cities use water, and maintain a certain relationship with it.


16. Photograph illustrates music rehearsal in the Dry Dock #2 - Dockyards Garden.


In most cities the original relationship between the port and the city broke down because of the industrialization started at the end of the 19th Century. Since then and throughout the 20th century city and port relation evolved, constructing a new reality. The continuity of this narrative becomes a theme for future interventions.

Dry Dock #2 (plate 15, 16) has been preserved and is described by Berman (2001, 69) as a site now ‘devoid of water creating a dramatic space with its huge rough-hewn stones.’ It stands as an open air museum that reports what the site used to be, informs about the scale of mechanisms required by ships and gives a strong sense of its uniqueness.

Functionally it provides one way to access a shopping center built beneath a tower, as well as serving as a gathering space for large events throughout the year. Equally important it also acts as a visual and historical counterpoint to the tower above. It provides a dramatic hint of the area’s earlier life and gives the visitor an enriching sense of the culture and history that marked the place. Opposing the mainstream process of waterfront renovation stigmatized by an ‘efficient disneyfication’, the Japanese policy offers an alternative. As Berman (2001,65) puts it ‘Preservation also corresponds to site art in how it can emotionally and intellectually stimulate people. At one level, a historically preserved site can add beauty to the environment. At another it can make people think about an area’s past and their own connections with that history.’ The mentioned case studies unveil a relationship between the community and its culture and landscape (plate 17).

The artificiality of the landfill, or the land created by man, is emphasized with the intervention which preserves a witness and simultaneously silently expresses the people’s desire who long to be given the opportunity to get to the water edge. This transformation process reinvents the human presence in the territory because it is not just a place frozen in time but a progressive industrial element used today (plate 18) for a variety of cultural and commercial activities (such as ‘ethnic music performances, basketball games, local bands shows, classical music concerts, school exhibitions, car shows, corporate business receptions, military music festivals and others’).


17. Photographs taken before and after the intervention. Several windows, a transversal bridge, staircases, are some of the elements that were used to transform the original Dry Dock #2

18. Some of the events that take place at Dry Dock #2.


The preservation of Dry Dock #1 was different. Not as visually noticeable from the outside as Dock #2, it has an old sailing ship floating in it, the Nippon Maru which is permanently moored there. Dry Dock #1 and its ship integrate the Maritime Museum. The museum house is partially buried underground. The museum is signaled by the ship masts that stick out as a landmark for the site.

In the city of Kobe the most impressive site at the waterfront is a fragment of a pavement half destroyed by the last big earthquake that shook the area in 1995. The ‘ruins’ of a small part of that pavement have been preserved as one of the reminders that constitute the more extensive Earthquake Memorial. This represents a will against oblivion of a terrible event, since human beings tend to forget negative experiences, and probably also because the Japanese people are frequently at odds with earthquakes. The Memorial also keeps trace of the works carried out to rebuild the place since 1995. But the preserved part of the pavement has a more direct role: it condensates the might of the earthquake, transmitting to us the sense of impotence that the people caught in the middle of it surely felt. In this particular case, the sense of togetherness of old and new catapults the visitor’s perception to experience a broader universe.

These interventions in the Japanese waterfront cities are an attempt to emphasize their character. Instead of a general global strategy, the focus here was to explore the qualities that already existed in each site making each of them different from one another. The philosophy is to preserve structures for public use, to developed their artistic potential whether by adapting and transforming them for new uses.

Kishamichi Promenade

In Japan too modern man is living in an age which in so many spheres of life has lost its center, yet whose inhabitants still bear within themselves a longing for tranquility. Contemplation is one of the ways to reach that half lost tranquility. In fact, ‘the concept way stands at the very heart of the cultural and intellectual life of Japan.’ It could be said that the Kishamich Promenade assumes the material form of a traditional Japanese way: becoming a path through which may practice the art of contemplation and experience serenity even amid the hasty urban life around them. The proximity of the 236

water that the Promenade seems to hold placidly apart, only fosters a contemplative frame of mind, one that is beautifully exemplified in the following haiku: The long night;/The sound of the water/Tells what I think.

In the end, the experience of craftsmanship, either through manual, mechanical means or state-of-the-art technology, has often followed a path deeply rooted in the fundamental human nature, for ‘it is not conscious composition that makes a picture; far from it. The picture must come from within, from the heart.’ Japanese art, be it painting, architecture or any other craft, is frameless, i. e., ‘the picture is not limited by a frame, either in the physical or in the mental sense. It places a high premium on the active participation of the observer’ – just like the Promenade might do to the meditative landscape observer that walks across it.

Kishamichi Promenade at Yokohama was an old railroad bridge originally built in the beginning of the last century to serve the port (plate 19). It was used for the transportation of goods and for freight trains to carry materials to and from warehouses and ships in the port area. In fact it was a merely functional facility. After the renovation process was concluded there is a promenade consisting of a wharf and two bridges linking the opposite banks. The new promenade for public use, flanked by water, offers a possibility to gaze at nature in a contemplative manner. Those walking through it may look back and read the well crafted historical heritage. The project carefully preserves the railway tracks that allow the visitor to keep trace of a narrative produced throughout the times. It is now a very different preserved site, as no longer needed for trains, and offers to pedestrians a new experience of urbanity. It became a ‘path’ for the contemplation of nature, one that proved to be very popular among local people and discretely connects past and present.

In Kishamichi Promenade old and new are harmoniously combined without sharp contrasts. It is much less impressive than the two dry docks, but much more in accordance with the


19. Kishamichi Promenade after restoration, above: aerial view, below: pictures at the present.

20. Landscape project of the bridge.


zen spirit that, in spite of the country’s modernization, is still embedded in the Japanese contemporary culture, and this is probably what makes the promenade a favorite place among the local people who flock into it. Not only a structure was preserved, but also a whole location was spared to an unstable period of slow death. The site propitiates a feeling of solitude and quietness in relation to the other more imposing and busy elements of MM21 (plate 20). ‘The wood walkway helps give it a more informal and less ‘master planned’ feel than much of the development.’ According to Berman (2001, 69) the Japanese waterfront sites ‘try to emphasize their uniqueness and capitalize on the qualities and physical forms that set them apart from other locations. The goals are often to attract visitors and businesses, as well as to satisfy local residents. Preserved structures, whether kept intact or adapted to new uses, have the potential to strengthen an area’s unique identity.’ The respect for the tastes and needs of local residents and the posture to value culture identity confer to the Japanese waterfront developments their uniqueness. An unusual realm where other countries may individually travel to.

Usually cities are represented by ‘picture postcards’, still images capturing precise moments of the cityscape. Photography provides us with extraordinary records of their evolution phases. From the historical point of view, those visual documents about the built heritage are of an unprecedented precision. Photography was a means to spread the interest in architecture and city landscape. Cities rely on the culture of images and their ex-libris to assert their identity. ‘Curiously cities are not photographable...because to take a picture is to frame, to select by excluding, and the city is just the opposite. What is not inside the frame is the smell and the sound and the move of life.’ (Brandão, 2001, 115) Cities are in permanent evolution, they are not standstill organisms, but they go through a continuous crescendo like in a motion picture. They undergo transformations which have an extraordinary capacity to surprise and provide unexpected experiences.

Industrial port architecture and its physical experience may lead one step forward, because it adds to our previous knowledge of the world. Japanese architectural heritage is acted upon following an ‘evolving heritage’ philosophy, and it is not seen as a frozen artifact in an open-air museum.


Sidney, Promenart Program

21. Sidney Opera House seen from the city


Sidney’s ‘Promenart’ series was a programme started in October 1999 to which over twenty different artists were invited to present ideas and projects for the waterfront. This initiative appears within a worldwide debate on waterfronts and their unpredictable future. The proposed interventions in the Promenart series were expected to deal with the complexity of the transformation of Sidney’s harbour. Given the cultural importance of the site, the challenge made to the artists was aimed to obtain a more holistic approach. ‘The relation between nature and city demands a scientific-artistic relationship. Water is an indispensable artistic material and has a vital function in the balance of eco-systems. Health, art, culture, eco-technique and sustainability are therefore part of this developing perspective. ‘Renewable energies, non-polluting means of transport, ecological buildings, leisure and amusement parks, pollution free places and land spots for agriculture are the basic elements for the innovation of new cities.’(Rodrigues, 1999, 15) Some of the Promenart proposals do not follow an urban design or financial investment logics, since the artists were free to use their creativity. So they could interpret the meaning of the site, and established links with the objects, memories and mechanisms placed along the waterfront.

Turpin e Crawford

Australian scholar Catherine De Lorenzo (2001, 75) describes one of the works, called Tied to tide (plate 22) as follows: ‘Using white and vermilion crane-like forms that evidentially constitute the visual language of adjacent maritime industry, the work then shifts register to respond to the tides, waves and wakes of passing vessels, and to sea breezes and at times gale-force winds that carry the salt spray up the nostrils of the onlooker! From a distance Tied jauntily asserts its presence on the waterfront; close up, the never-still work invites a kind of stillness as we connect with the wind and water around us.’

Metal structures drift and lower in response to the tidal flows and winds. Responding to the forces of natural phenomena, the red ladders lift, drift and lower and symbolically subvert the common idea that man must always control nature through machinery. The movement of machines are controlled by man; in this case they are controlled by nature.


Victoria Lynn (2001, 43) describes Tied to tide as ‘A floating, kinetic, tidal, wave-andwind activated installation in Pyrmont Point Park, Sidney, is like an aquatic dance. […]In the context of large cranes that often feature on the Sydney skyline, the optical density of Pyrmont Bridge and the wooden ladders at the edge of the old worn pier, Turpin and Crawford have created a maverick, performing sculpture. The planks host a choreography of lost ladders that seem to be at odds with their new found freedom. […]It takes a special conceptual ability to visualize a work before this interdisciplinary process is undertaken.’

This work was not a one person production, such art work requires the engagement of an extended team of experts, and at the same time demands a great deal of energy and personal strength to lead the process and coordinate them all. Their idea was very clear and strong from the beginning, and it also fulfilled the program orientation, therefore it was capable of convincing client, consultants, and builder. The team included the artists themselves who engaged structural engineers, mechanical engineers, physicists, landscape architects, fluvial geomorphologists, developers, sub-contractors, biologists, hydraulic engineers, metallurgists, and sanitation and water treatment specialists in their work to accomplish its execution.

It was awarded the 2000 ARUP award for Art in the Built Environment (ARUP is the most prestigious world engineer firm). In the Judges’ comments we can read that ‘this extraordinarily innovative art work more than fulfilled the judging criteria. Its bold elegant forms resonate with industrial maritime setting at the same time as they respond to the energies of water and wind. Tied to tide is alive to the natural and historical forces in a way that speaks to the site without at the same time being enslaved to the context. The work is boldly imaginative, thoughtfully executed and subtlety transformative of the experience of the place. Rich in cultural memory, it also importantly provokes new thoughts and insights and as such becomes itself memorable.’


22. Artists Turpin/Crawford work Tied to tide is composed of eight units, each ten meters long, made of hardwood timber, stainless steel, fibreglass and aluminium.


Robin Backen

Archaeology of Bathing by Robin Backen is another piece of art work on the water edge (plate 23). It was commissioned by The Office of Sydney Harbour Manager (OSHM), which acted for three years as a kind of agent provocateur into new research on Sydney Harbour and was sympathetic to possible collaborations between artists and scientists. Sculpture Walk was to have comprised 20 commissioned permanent place-specific public art works in and around Sydney, and the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority developed ‘Promenart’ series and accomplished to install 10 of those works between 1999-2000. This specific work suggests two important and yet subtle questions: who accesses the waterfront and when?

Accessibility has been an important issue about which Boeri (2000), Busquets (1999), de Lorenzo (2001), Ferreira (1999), Gastil (2002) and Remesar (2001) have written extensively. Ferreira (1999,23) argues that ‘it has always been a difficult marriage’ between port and city, precisely during the industrial busy period when port cities developed inland and turned their back to the water. It is only when the harbor infrastructures become obsolete that ‘a new and real proximity works again.’ The role of art in the process of waterfront transition opens new possibilities because much of the art offers the viewer an alternative perception to the existing tar and cement scenery, not through rejection of the urban condition, but enhancing and rehabilitating the urban life experience. Through Backen’s work the user is projected to another dimension, out of time, as the present metaphorically evokes a past that has never been, like a ruin that allows multiple readings of a place.

This kind of initiatives promotes a broader understanding of the waterfront transition, one that challenges the public use of those sites and originates a reflection about alternatives to their transformation process anchored in local culture and not in the financial investment culture. Sculpture by the Sea project, for example, uses the temporary installation of art works along a kilometer or so of rugged ocean coastline from the popular Bondi Beach and in so doing attracts record crowds of sightseers who enjoy the art as much as the scenic walk. The image projected on the waterfront acts as the “face” of the town for those coming from the sea. It’s a sailor’s vision of the


construction between the land and the water edge, and such constructions become a cultural reference to a wider public. They are pieces of civilization placed on nature.

Such artistic interventions contribute to make apparent that art can be provocative, amusing and intriguing. They play with the general perception that an increasingly mechanized society searches for a closer, simpler and perhaps more human contact with the water both for what it actually is and for all it symbolizes or evokes. The Promenart brought artists to the spotlight of the transformation process in an intimate and intuitive manner that allowed them to feel the ties with the site re-inventing its cultural marks instead of applying the general grand gesture that dominates various waterfront developments around the world.

As it is sharply announced by Sydney’s City Hall brochures, these programs are ‘an impulse to reconnect city and landscape, and to affirm non-functionalist art within and around the hub of economic rationalism, may seem quaintly yet the suggestion of nostalgia in some of the new public art, the invocation of memory, history [and] identity, that underpins so much of the work, has been effectively countered by a culture of dissent that makes us look and think afresh about the city and perhaps the world in which we live.’

Architecture is always dream and function, expression of utopia and instrument of convenience. Objects on the waterfront have the power to enhance artistic expression, and to communicate with people. Kandinsky dreamed of ‘a great city built according to all the rules of architecture and then suddenly shaken by a force that defies all calculation.’ The city is currently planned by many, processed through decisions of ‘common sense’, and thus becoming anonymous and monotonous. Public art brings the exception. Art in urban life should be free of any theoretical reflection. Artists, in which architects are included, are expected to add personal contributions and ‘emphasise the fusion of the physical with the imaginative structures, as the human environment is the product of powerful and yet diffuse imaginations’.


23. Backen, The Archaeology of Bathing, Wooloomooloo Bay, Domain 2000


Oakland – Artship Foundation

24. Drawing and photograph of the Artship Foundation moored at 9th Ave


The Artship Foundation, a non-profit organization, was given a vessel built in 1939. She was formerly a cargo and passenger ship, that later became a maritime training vessel, and recently was transformed into a facility for artistic and educational ventures (plate 24). The vessel, originally called the Del Orleans, was first launched as a merchant liner before being acquired by the Navy in 1941. Under the name U.S.S. Crescent City, she was used for the transport of troops during WWII. The Crescent City saw significant action in the Pacific War Theatre before being decommissioned in 1948. She was lent to the State of California in 1971, renamed the name Golden Bear, and acted as a maritime school vessel until 1995. Four years later, she became property of the Artship Foundation and is now serving as a cultural and educational centre at the East Bay. The artists draw inspiration from the stories, design, structures and the mechanisms of the ship herself. The redevelopment plan for Oakland Estuary in its early stages involved the City, the Port and private partners. Port and developer representatives said it was unclear what role Artship, which is struggling to build its artistic and financial status, would have in the Specific Plan.. The Artship is a long-term project for the permanent mooring of the vessel, that will create an unique setting for innovative, community-oriented programs run by the Artship Foundation and other interested community groups. The Artship is an alternative solution within the wider waterfront renovation process that dominates the Port of Oakland. At the historic cargo barn known as the Ninth Avenue Terminal there are about 60 acres in the neighbourhood running up to Oak Street where the port is exploring a mixed-use project that would make the Ninth Avenue the Bay Area's ultimate waterfront neighbourhood. It will be equipped with a market inside a section of the old terminal, housing, recreation facilities and workplaces in a setting for historic preservation (Del Vecchio, 2002). Artship's executive director, Slobodan Dan Paich, said the vessel's restoration and environmental review are progressing towards a bid for permits to allow the public to go aboard for classes, shows and other events. For Artship, Paich is interested in stories that deal with emotions like longing and separation. The immigrant experience, the experience of going to sea, the experience of being part of a city's industrial expansion 248

or decline are rich veins for artists and historians to explore through storytelling of events anchored in a particular moment and geography. Project will establish a new kind of community center with job training programs such as Ship Works (a maritime apprenticeship program), Galley Works (a culinary and hospitality training program), and venues for the performing and visual arts and for the memory of the maritime history, and free public waterfront access. It is already an art gallery and studio. It's used for children's shows, dancing, music, rehearsals, study, writing, filmmaking, etc. (Rockstroh, 2001) The vessel, a product of the end of the machine era that produced the Golden Bear and the Ninth Avenue Terminal, is splendidly tough, yet curved like the nearly indestructible but concise maritime tool its designers meant it to be. Thanks to 18 000 hours of labour – 16 000 of them accounting for free voluntary work – the ship looks as good as it did when it was first launched from Maine more than 50 years ago as one may judge by old photographs.1 The collective memory of the city is rediscovering the serene presence of artefacts that once characterized the urban life. As D’Agostino (2001, 43) said about the Arsenale in Venice, the port area in Oakland was ‘the place where the fortune of the city was determined; it was the heart of the wide network of material and immaterial relationships of economic and political character. It was a large production site, the first modern factory, generating material culture. It was the place where decision making […] was evaluated, challenged and measured. Gertrude Stein was from Oakland and defined her hometown using the expression “there is no there, there”. Stein was not referring to the port area, which was mainly used by sailors and stevedores. The industrial port took over the waterfront with hangars, machines, warehouses, dust, and low income men ready to work on the ships. At the present the waterfront is undergoing an ambitious intervention that is expected to last 10 years. The plan will transform it into one of the Bay Area's prime venues for art, music and the performing arts. Its three giant cargo holds will become seven-story theatres. The Artship Foundation it is at the core of such transformation. Its old liner is evolving with a new role as a floating performing arts centre and a symbol of the new Oakland.


Photographs shown at


25. Site plan and cross section of the Artship


From Vessel to building To allow the disabled access to the ship, new devices were required. Artist Ben Trautman2 combined integration of art and accessible design in his work for the creation of sculptures inhabiting an accessible pathway for the disabled. Another art installation is simple enough, but if we look through the floor steel grate we see a metal contraption that moves like outspreading fingers, as it is described by Del Vecchio (2002) ‘Entry to the ramp triggers the sculpture's movement, its brass-rod fingers squeakily unfolding like a machine from the bowels of the ship – a machine whose utility is art, and the other way around. The piece is modelled after the locking mechanism for the ship's watertight doors.’ Dan Paich, executive director of the Artship Foundation, is enthusiastic about the mechanical and architectural qualities of the ship. ‘You need something that is as big as a cathedral to make the city come together’’, says Paich. In Oakland you can't miss the giant ship tied to the Ninth Avenue pier, and that became part of the waterscape. The view of the bay from the top of the ship is outstanding. The ship offers a new reading of the waterfront in which the strongest theme is the new use given to an existing obsolete mechanism, and transform its primary function converting a former war artefact into a social benefit. It is an emblematic achievement. In 1995, the ship was chosen as the site of the future United States campus of the International Peace University (IPU). Currently based in Berlin, IPU is sponsored by a board of directors and advisors which includes thirteen Nobel Peace Prize laureates. The Artship Foundation was chosen from a wide field of non-profit organizations across the USA because of its similar philosophies to IPU’s. The classes of IPU will take place in the refurbished Artship. The ship stands in the centre of the 19 miles of Oakland waterfront currently undergoing renovation. Most of the waterfront used to be inaccessible to the general public, once it was mainly occupied by military bases. Nowadays the size of the Port of Oakland has doubled, since 520 acres of former naval property were added to its previous 665 acres. 2

A lead artist in residence at Artship, Oakland, 2001-2002 produced ‘sculptures inhabiting accessible pathway’, ‘water crane’, ‘motion activated sculpture’ and ‘clamping mechanisms’ the projects were made possible by a grant from - The Creative Work Fund.


Construction of new piers, container ports, parks, parking lots, railway lines and apartment buildings is underway. Simultaneously, Oakland's city government and local artists have been working to combine together what critics have called offbeat arts, button-down government. As it is explained by Rockstroh (2001) ‘The arts have been injected into recreation programs, parks and community centres, and downtown Oakland is an art gallery buff's dream. The Artship Foundation has been instrumental in getting local art into storefront windows throughout the city.’ Among other waterfront development strategies the Artship stands out as a project of reference. It provides a public space for artistic events at the water edge. Using an obsolete vessel, the Artship Foundation is the engine that reinvents the site’s urban life.


Bristol – SS Great Britain

26. Above: constructive detail, below:.Rendered image of the project to preserve ship and dry dock in Bristol: proposition to close off the hull underneath a sealed glass covered with water.


SS Great Britain, a passenger steamer built in 1843, will be preserved in one of the dry docks at Bristol harbor. She was the largest ship in the world at the time, 98 meter long and weighting 1 950 tones, and it will be carefully restored to her initial condition. Three questions were raised concerning the future of the dry dock. What new functions are suitable in connection with the history of the area as the heart of the city of Bristol’s maritime industry? The dry dock is part of an architectural constructed set at the port area. How will each object evolve or adapt to the new functions? How can a large ship be kept ashore for preservation purposes? Or is possible to preserve such a ship at the sea? To find answers one must start looking at the site history and geography, since Bristol once represented the innovative maritime industry of Great Britain.

The preservation of the site to be transformed and used for other activities gives rise to many controversial opinions. At the root of the disagreements is the considerable importance of the port in the past, but the main reason for discussion concerns the future role of the port. For some the architecture could not be representative and fixed forever, as if the buildings had definitely achieved its status. Instead they had to be in conformity with the characteristics of the site, and the needs of the present and next generations. Bristol’s dry dock is an object of industrial archaeology, and at the same time typifies the landscape and has its own architectural individuality. The dock is permanently wet, with ground water leaching through the stones and random rubble walls, since public use was never expected. On a dry dock it becomes possible to moor the ship. The proposed project will enable the rare experience of being under the ship’s hull. The space between the dry dock and the ship situates the visitor in a position to have an unique perception – the water above his head, a huge mass of sharp iron abnormally out of water just next to him and the roughness of a strange oblique wall at his back.

Traveling back through history, one can see that ports played three main roles linking land and sea, serving primarily as navigator, defender and controller. Navigator to transport people and goods by sea, reaching long distances. Defender of invasions from hostile groups. Controller of commercial activities and economic transactions. The main physical presence on the territory are Piers and Docks. They transform the 254

borderline between two worlds. Dry dock is a good mixture of both worlds; it is filled up with water or kept dry, depending on the circumstances. It works through an ingenious mechanism, using natural variations of tides and man rigorous understanding of them. The dry dock works with natural forces, and yet it has a precise control of those very same forces. It has a sustainable relationship with the water.

Many port cities throughout the world have kept large ancient ships on the waterfront. Visitors may experience being inside and look at them. Large ships are visible from the outside, their interior can be visited, but they are never seen from below. The alternative to create a visitor’s centre around the world’s first iron-hulled, screw-propeller driven and steam-powered liner, is clearly an attempt to inform about the machine and bring it to a new stage. Today many machines updated by contemporary technology have lost the quality that relates to human values, and we have lost the mechanical understanding of the machines we use. Machines represent the most emblematic element of the modern period when they embodied the ideal of control over nature.

Industrial archaeology is related with questions of identity which are generally dealt with considering the built heritage and ‘by the evocation of bygone activities and maritime presence. Operations of this type aim at presenting industrial archaeology by refurbishing warehouses and installations, has been done at Bristol.’ (Wilson, 2001, 34) The city waterfront renovation has been a very active and eclectic process. Promoting competitions for projects that unveil the potential of the waterfront, the meaning of the site and its qualities. The winning competition project for Bristol’s waterfront concert hall, designed by German architect Stefan Behnisch, was part of the reinvention of the site. Blundell Jones (1998, 45) argued about this project that ‘the kind of building was new to these shores and belonged to an architectural tradition from which much could be learned.’ This project did not value an industrial archaeology perspective, but presented a building that pushes out the frontier of the territory, and its architectural language was new to the site.


27. Dry dock at Bristol before conversion

28. Marissa Mainiquiz (2001, 118) drawing of Naval Museum for the Arsenale.

Progressive Heritage

There is among some designers and planners an idea that waterfront opens up a variety of possibilities for urban renewal. ‘They should remain places where architecture is still capable of generating real surprises, changes in scale, with resonance between different spaces distant from one another.’ Boeri (2001, 71) argues that harbor areas are spaces in constant mutation, changing their shape to cater to diverse uses and transportation requirements. In Bristol’s case, as happened in many other European port cities, one could not elude the necessity to think about what kind of alternatives could be developed to the American model based on Festival markets and commercial/leisure activities wide spread among waterfront cities. If European cities claim a strong historic presence at their port areas, then Bristol managed to re-establish the relation between the city and its port preserving features of both and entangling them. And this is being done without erasing the narrative of times readable in the footprints of the territory. Furthermore, the project does not exile the water to the background, but it calls the water to lively participate as a natural ceiling for the visitor’s centre.

‘Shipyard repair is too utilitarian. Conservators merely conserve. Any treasured artifact requires detailed analysis to attribute cultural and engineering significance to alterations and repairs so that debate about risk to the structure or public safety can be conducted within a climate, which fully endorses the cultural contest. The architect can mediate 256

between the structural engineer and the naval architect [. . .] the dynamic ship structure, exposed to the ceaseless battle with the ocean, has to be translated into a totally static artifact within the dry dock’,says Julian Harrap (2002, 40), the architect who has pulled together a strategic plan of refurbishment, repair and transformation of both the ship and the dry dock. Harrap quotes Ananda Coomaraswamy, an Indian art historian: ‘The shipbuilder builds not for aesthetic reasons, but in order [ . . .] to sail on water; it is a matter of fact that the well-built ship will be beautiful, but it is not for the sake of making something beautiful that the shipbuilder goes to work.’

Retaining the ship in its current location in the dry dock, Harrap proposes to save one obsolete machine. Machines are constantly evolving replacing previous versions. The machinery when outdated is dismantled, and we face an important question about what can we do with them. To recycle them is a challenge. In this case, Harrap developed a high technology solution to close off the hull below a sealed glass waterline plate, by which the old dock ‘instead of being a cool, dank space [. . .] will be transformed into a temperature, dry controlled space,’ but in so doing, the essential authenticity of the dock walls will be retained.

Technology here is used to provide a new architectural experience narrates the site historical background not as place frozen in time, but as a progressive and evolutionary industrial heritage.



General considerations


According to the order of the structure


Complexity and Flexibility


Final considerations – how to conceive change




General Considerations

When we embarked on this research we came to realize that the upgrading of the port of Lisbon presented particularly complex problems, as the Port Authority had failed to relocate the container terminal away from the urban centre. They had developed a plan for this new terminal to be situated on the other side of the river, the south bank, at Trafaria, with logistic platforms providing efficient rail/road connections integrated into a global transportation system, but this project was never implemented. The facilities were not upgraded and the container terminal remained in close proximity to the historic centre of the city, compromising the future development of the port, being detrimental to the container operators and to the urban environment. Some important questions were formulated in the beginning of this work in order to investigate the complexity inherent to the object of study and to the problem it presents. We are now ready to present some conclusions about the port area of Lisbon.

The transformations made during the last twenty years in most port cities have reshaped cities and ports through the implementation of waterfront urban development plans. We have argued that the port activity reconfigures and relocates the port. We have shown that the activity of the Port of San Francisco in the Bay Area moved to the other side – the Port of Oakland. We have given evidence that port facilities of both metropolis Barcelona and San Francisco are continuously expanding unlike the Port of Lisbon. The Port of Lisbon postponed this transformation and therefore now have the privilege of benefiting from experiments occurring elsewhere and learning from their successes and failures.

It has been seen that although both city and port have been working together to pursue common goals, the prevailing administrative procedure, and the relation between these institutions have been such as to stop these projects. In the near future the Municipality of Lisbon and the Port Authority will hopefully have the opportunity to engage in the process of reinvention of the port area. They have different objectives – the port seeks to update and upgrade efficiency and the city seeks the improvement of urban life, but they can both win if they agree to engage in a long term process based on a real dialogue between representatives of the port, the city and the citizens. Waterfront plans have been attracting the attention of public opinion, which in some cases has led to 260

demonstrations actually preventing their implementation, that has happen in Lisbon in 1994. Public protest have been particularly common towards projects that exclude the citizens participation in a true democratic tradition. Which brings the debate to another level – the necessity to find new models of planning, urban design and architecture that will succeed in transforming the present divorce between port and city. In this way the port, once constructed solely as an efficient platform located on a geographically strategic point, now becomes available for urban activities.

We have shown that some of the previous plans and ideas have failed to be carried out in the area. Pozor failed, for two main reasons; there was a lack of understanding of the present challenges, and there was an incapacity to come to terms with the complexity of the relationship between the city and the port of Lisbon. In order to find an alternative model a methodology was developed based on a deeper analysis of the object of study and on comparative case studies. To define the contours of the discussion, this study has placed the present situation within the process of evolution that city and port have been engaged in. What we see at the present is the historical progression of the port, reshaped by generations of various structures and the space of the industrial landfill. Since the problem has been discussed during several generations, this study aims to present a possible framework where specific information is assembled and critically reviewed in order to identify separate questions. This allows a clearer definition of the content of the discussion.

The information assembled about the creation and the evolution of the port area has given a broader understanding that goes beyond the surface of the present reality. The analyses of what was there, and how it was designed and built have necessarily shifted our perception regarding the port area. It constitutes a body of knowledge to be included in future debate. As Monclús (2004, 24) has pointed out:

‘It is not a question of pointing towards positive, systematic and final knowledge. Neither history nor urbanism is susceptible to knowledge by means of laws and rules. It is a question, in both cases, of an assembly of knowledge that is built in a swaying of inferences arising from a mixture of data and experiences (…) as Roberto Segre proposes, the mutual visions as an


irreplaceable heuristic instrument that enriches our perception, our capacity of analysis and of interpretation. They permit, for the same reason, to promote and to enrich the debate’.

Considering that the data will enrich the debate this study includes the analyses of some projects and visions for similar areas that were never built but give information of past discussions regarding the future that only existed in the drawings. Such information illustrates the debate that previous authors engaged in regarding their own future, which contains clues for our future. The analyses of present waterfront development plans were oriented towards the Parque das Nações since it is the present reference for new urban waterfront development at the port area. In summary, the creation of the territory of the industrial port (past) the Expo’98 waterfront development (present) and the comparative analyses of former projects and visions for the port area (future) have structured the chronology of the research.

As for the territory, the site has physical spaces created for functional or operational reasons that influence the area at various scales – macro, urban and detail. The separation into these three parts allowed a deeper analyses oriented specifically to each scale. Planning a new container terminal is an economical and technical decision to be taken at a national level, while the urban regeneration plans are produced by architects and planners to be discussed at a regional level involving the Municipality, the Port Authority and the Rail Company. The discussion regarding a specific building or a specific public space has been dealt with locally. Given the complexity of the object of study, the fragmentation of the whole and the identification of specific questions has given this research the opportunity to define more precise limits for separate discussion according to each scale and consequently to develop a clearer understanding of the questions. Since the present debate includes contributions from experts in different areas of study the separation into smaller fragments enabled the definition of independent ‘sections of discussion’.


1. View of the Santos Terminal in its present layout.

2. The landfill transformed for alternative uses for urban and maritime related activities.


1. (cont.) former industrial warehouses are rented by the port authority to restaurants.

2. (cont.) the implementation of urban facilities at the port area


The conclusions presented ahead follow the same criteria, and the division in three scales, also organizes the information about the debates confronting different author’s opinions. Besides the spatial organization of the site, it seemed crucial to understand the ‘mutation’ or the evolution in time of the port and its impact on the city. From the beginning we realize that there were multiple readings of the historical evolution of the site. Each author has emphasized specific events to support his own opinions. We have registered how the information was manipulated in attempts to construct specific arguments – one author even transforming ancient drawings to give his ideas more credibility. This however did not prevent the project of the industrial port from being aborted, which is a fact that seems to be acknowledged by most authors.

Conclusions According to the Order of the Structure

Starting with the analysis of the maritime transportation system that has been affected by major transformations and will continue to evolve one can conclude that the port area will continue to adapt while large surfaces will be free for new uses. If the creation of the industrial port was a national issue, the creation of a container terminal was not, and the Port Authority of Lisbon alone was not capable of constructing a new terminal. The necessity to invest elsewhere and update the port facilities was never put into effect and the activity involving container cargo, which only represented 16% in 2000 – a low percentage when compared to other ports in the Iberian Peninsula. Container activity continues to expand because it is the fastest growing sector for other ports, but slowly for Lisbon.

Container operators are efficiency-oriented when making their decisions, efficiency in the port of Lisbon has been deteriorating, confined as it is between a highly congested city and the river. Without capital to invest the port of Lisbon did not succeed in finding a partner, as they previously had with Hersent, which is what the APS, Port Authority of Sines has recently done by attracting a foreign investor – PSA, Port of Singapore Authority– to construct a container terminal of deep sea water, providing a type of project finance similar to that negotiated with the French company – Hersent – which built the industrial port of Lisbon. Sines is now the fastest growing port in the country. There is no urban pressure, on the contrary there is flexibility to expand and no relevant 265

environmental limitations all of which is crucial for the future growth and development of port facilities and inter-modal infrastructures and logistic platforms. According to Nunes da Silva the APS and PSA exploitation of the Terminal XXI will get a significant percentage of container traffic currently operated through Lisbon. The container terminal at Sines is expected to compete not only in serving the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon, but also a vast hinterland that reaches Spain. Ports either grow and live or they shrink and die, but the activity does not vanish it springs elsewhere, and Sines is taking advantage of Lisbon difficulties.

On the urban scale and in the context of the current discussion about the port area of Lisbon, one of the first questions formulated in this study analysed the failure in 1994 to implement the waterfront development plan (Pozor). Ten years later and armed with a more mature understanding of the subject both Municipality and Port Authority realize that the railway line and the road are the main physical barriers preventing the city from relating with the river; working as an obstacle that prevents urban life from entering the port area. The APL strategy that proclaims the need to integrate the port area into the city remains physically separate by the ‘cut off effect’.

We have argued that re-establishing the city back to the water required mutual effort but the plan Pozor was commissioned independently by APL. We have shown how the Port Authority has been acting as a developer, effectively ruling the land in the public domain that can not be privatized, but they do not know how to handle the great complexity in the context of the city-port relation. On their own the presentation of the plan (Pozor) for public discussion was a breakthrough in Portuguese urban planning tradition, considering that most of the country’s urban plans usually attract criticism only when the construction is already underway. The plan did not contain ideas for the long term urban improvement of the port-city relation – the needs of the neighborhoods that are located along the port area were not considered. The multidisciplinary strategy did not achieve positive results and the Port Authority has acted independently to bring about the gradual changes it has decided on for the future. We have argued that a future plan (or plans) should instead launch the base for a new frame of thinking, joining city and port representatives with the population represented by associations and individuals. As it is pointed out by Rabinovitch and Leitman (1996, 53) ‘Any plan should involve 266

partnerships among private sector entrepreneurs, nongovernmental organizations, municipal agencies, utilities, neighborhood associations, community groups and individuals’. In the process of making the city in the Iberian cultural context, Monclús (2004, 22) argues that ‘the cultural dimension of the city returns to be prominent, now taking into account that the “culture of cities” refers as much the preservation of a “cultural inheritance” as to the use of culture as a strategic resource in which has come to be called “cultural economy”. The cultural dimension of each city, should be able to imprint specific qualities that reflect the uniqueness and the local traditions. In Lisbon, the triangle between municipality – port – citizens should be able to conceive an alternative to the standard ideas, embraced by narrow-minded investors and politicians who wish to play safe by copying solutions used globally.

Some authors have recently express their position, also based on public surveys, on how the city wishes to re-gain the river and preserve the port, integrating in its present day heritage some remembrances of the port activity Craveiro (1997, 50). Soutinho (1999, 99) refers to the importance of the city’s connection to the water, re-establishing the broken link. The port area should remain a public space; and the whole project should blend in with the natural landscape and the urban environment.

Some of the projects analyzed in this study have presented the city as one entity, searching for the return of its traditional relationship with the water, trying to reconstruct this balance with a new morphology. It is the lack of real dialogue and coordination between each entity that causes the waste of energy, time and the constant misunderstanding which characterizes the painful relationship between the city and the port. The lack of coordination and exchange of information between institutions has prevented the efficient organization of the process. As Rodrigues (1999, 12) puts it ‘this logic is intended to solve the symptoms of an unlinked framework that inherently creates problems.” The port area balances between “Speculative land and property development…continues that practice of building monuments that soared ever higher as symbols of corporate power” (Harvey 1990, 71) and the context of maritime activity playing a central role.


When we look in detail at specific buildings placed next to the port area we find universities and museums that are willing to expand their facilities, several structures with potential for new urban activities and with great economic importance for the city. Cruise terminals are to be included they are simultaneously a port infrastructure and un urban facility. As the latest generation of these terminals incorporate commercial and cultural areas to serve both city and port. Cruise passengers are increasing at an unusual rate and they are becoming valuable to local economies. The flow of passengers has a significant impact as dozens of tourist buses are loaded in short periods of time. Some cities have been investing in good means of public transportation, as well as in direct pedestrian connections to the city. However, the present state of the relations between the city and port are so difficult that the project of the future cruise terminal is uncertain. The same applies to the European Maritime Agency – when the team wanted to construct their new building on the port area near the Ancient Art Museum they faced such obstruction that at last they decided to go to Cais do Sodré area, where there is no ‘cut off effect’ because the industrial port was never completed thus the railway line was never finished.

We made use of the historic research to have a deeper understanding of the site cultural significance and the importance of public spaces, the conflict opposing AGPL (Port Authority) and Marinha (Navy) ended up aborting the project in the area between Cais do Sodré and Terreiro do Paço. This small waterfront area remained the only gap in the barrier created by the industrial port. Hersent, who was paid according to the amount of reclaimed land needed to extend the landfill because the interruption of the project, had to be compensated with more profitable land surface to sell. We have suggested that the construction of the landfill was oriented towards efficiency and profitability, and reinvented a connection to the water by designing mechanical systems of transportation. It did finish with a careful construction of spaces conforming to the human scale, and also erased centuries of a rich series of buildings and open spaces along the river. The last record of the urban features becomes relevant for the present debate as urban life returns to the site. The Tramway line project by Louis de Lennen in 1862, was designed just before the construction of the industrial landfill, and it remains the most accurate record of the city’s relationship with the river, revealing rich details of urban spaces and a diversity of urban features constructed throughout generations. It could be seen as a lost heritage banned from the site. The scene presented in the drawings does not only 268

evoke nostalgia but also provides a visual record of a lost reality, one that combined a quality and diversity of urban spaces that should be taken in consideration when redesigning future public spaces for the site.

The design and the popularity of the waterfront public spaces at the Expo’98 are relevant to the discussion as they are the most similar event both in time and space. At the Expo’98 public spaces and green areas are carefully designed, and the organization received evidence from the public that a traffic free environment was more attractive to them. According to Jan Gehl (2000, 12) the city’s new car-free space is used for a special form of social recreation, urban recreation, in which the opportunity to see, meet and interact with other people is a significant attraction.’ And that the spatially complex solution is successful in exploiting the three dimensional quality of public space, in which ‘urban barriers at the ground level’ are integrated into urban life and new topographies blur the existing ‘cut off effect’ created by the flow of modern means of transportation.

We have argued that the Expo’98 model presents problems as a private corporation1 (S.A.) with public participation – being driven by motives of profit meant compromising with specific demands and pressures from investors. As a result instead of the expected continuity of the city, an urban insularity imposed the third world model of a private condominium (Cabral de Mello, 2002, 63) benefiting the richer strata of the population and cutting them off from the surrounding lower class areas.’ On the contrary, Brian Hoyle (1997, 50) argues that ‘waterfront redevelopment has the effect of removing barriers between city and the sea’. To conclude that attracting the private sector should not mean opposition to invest widely in the removal of the existing barriers.

At the present municipalities depend on tax payers, municipal authorities aim to obtain fast revenues from real estate taxes and developers from sales. Expo’98 has given evidence to local investors of the high value of prices per square meter in and around


The initial investment of Expo’98 was 561 millions euros, and total revenues when 95% of the land was sold in 2003, have registered revenues of 4800 millions.


the area. They are aware that urban regeneration continues to attract large investments around the Parque das Nações. This does not apply only to Lisbon – some other cities involved in waterfront developments attract large investments, and consequently real estate taxes provide attractive income. We live in a period where it is not possible to have absolute control over the process of making the city, if that moment ever existed. However as Harvey (1990, 91-92) explains ‘major cities compete with each other, mainly as financial, consumption, and entertainment centers. Imaging a city through the organization of spectacular urban spaces’. The solution for economic success is increasingly dependant on the creativity of the investors and less on the number of square meters.

As we have seen in other port cities the participation of the population in the process of city and port urban regeneration has resulted in improvements for all three. Although using different methods there is a common tendency for the port area to provide creative public spaces, related to memory, art, culture and historical context, ‘downtown is related directly to the waterfront, and that represents the most ancient part of the town. […] The square facing the water was one of the favorite places for citizens to meet, to discuss and walk together’(Brutomesso, 1997, 121). The intervention of artists in the public space emerged as a key factor for the creative use of the urban habitat by the public, leading to possible functions and fictions to reproduce social life.

3. Three dimensional diagram representing new topographies and urban flows at the waterfront


We have analyzed and discussed projects on the waterfront that change the morphology of the territory in order to link city and water through the artificial land of the port. To discuss that possibility for the port area of Lisbon we have researched the construction and the evolution of the industrial port. According to Baldaque the new landfill of the industrial port would sever the relationship established throughout the centuries between city and river, backing his argument with scientific data based on regular measurements of the river bottom revealing a disruptive ecologic and natural balance of the riverfront. At the time Baldaque’s holistic approach was not well received by dominant decision makers, therefore the landfill was constructed with underground pipes to collect the rain waters to the river. The necessity to link the hill and the river has been present since the Mardel project which envisions, transversal canals from the natural topography of the hills through the artificial landfill to the river. Nowadays landscape architects believe that sustainable solutions should make use of the natural forces of nature rather than permanently try to control them, and therefore future intervention at the landfill of the port area should include transversal open-air canals. The previous studies have been commissioned either by the port or by the city and reflect their own visions or future interests. This research from an independent assessment will hopefully contribute to a wider discussion including different standpoints. The physical aspect of the territory, artificially constructed on landfill sets the basis for further discussions.

Concepts such as the cartographic culture of the territory or the culture of working the territory were developed at Barcelona by Sola Morales, and have influenced other scholars perception’s. To trace the culture of the territory of Lisbon we discussed some projects that never came to be built. Together they construct a parallel narrative of the site. A quite different history, where only projects that were not successful and not implemented, are presented and discussed in order to investigate why each of them failed. The analyses of different projects for the site elaborated in different centuries reveal the ideas and influences that emerge in the discussion about the port area. Juvara’s drawings, the 1727 plan commissioned by D. João V and Mardel’s plan, ordered by Pombal, celebrated the idea of squares, large spaces for public activities at the waterfront. Belo’s plan (1936) for the Marginal avenue was designated for a ‘reception dock’ for cruise passengers and the square, Corpo Santo, would be extended to












4. Aerial photograph of the Aterro da Boavista and Santos area with the juxtaposition (at the same scale) of the plan of Lisbon surveyed and drawn by J.N. Tinoco in 1650 prior to the 1755 earthquake when the medieval fabric vanished.

In 1988, the competition organized by the Architects for the waterfront of Lisbon, was set up to confront current ideas and discuss the future of the city as a whole and not fragmented and separated by different landlords. The proposal awarded with the FLAD prize, has presented the city as one entity, one body that searches to re-establish its relationship with the water by making use of the land at the port area, and in our view this illustrates a possible direction for future projects.

Looking at the evolution of previous projects helps to evaluate the problems and the possibilities of the site. In doing so, designers may engage in this architecture and city planning spectrum, to ‘attain a new freedom and develop new creative possibilities, such as those that have begun to be felt in the last decades in the fields of painting, sculpture, music, and poetry’. At present some architects like Elia Zenghelis argue that architects are expected to declare a very strong view and develop concepts that they could defend in projecting a future for the city. ‘On the waterfront there is an ‘opportunity to discuss architecture and the iconography of architecture as a kind of theoretical, symbolic aspect (…) of architecture not being contextual, but always 272

generating context.’ Design proposals form the base for establishing a dialogue between the Port Authority and city. Drawings usually presented as preliminary sketches have forced both entities to work together to reach converging visions and continue the culture of working the territory.

Within the contemporary debate on waterfront we have seen how some cities promoted workshops and public discussion on their waterfronts. At Le Havre where AIVP sets its headquarters, the public debate resulted in approximately fifty meetings with the opposing parties to change the project. In search of creative and artistic initiatives, the city of Santander (Spain), included 183 exhibits since 1990 and scholarships were granted for graduate students to develop research projects. At the waterfront of Dundee (Scotland) nine different strategies where analysed by the population, before they elected the winning plan to be developed with the approval of the government. In these processes that also includes the participation of the public, design proposals are the driving force for the public and private sectors to develop research groups and form the partnerships needed for each particular case.

We made use of the strategies of San Francisco and Barcelona waterfronts which both reinforce one of the main arguments of this study. Both emphasized specific projects rather than general urban planning - active city policy aimed to bring back the quality of urban life, by providing dozens of projects for new public spaces, parks and squares, elevating public space to the level of an independent architectural field. On the waterfront open spaces are more stable and more important than buildings. There, the people have learned to enjoy the privileges of the waterfront as a public space and the cultural facilities are proving to be both economically feasible and popular. Michael Hebbert states that Oriol Bohigas’s general proposition for Barcelona was ‘that urbanism should be based on projects rather than plans’ a theoretical proposition he started to develop when working for the Municipality of Barcelona in the early 1980s.

‘First: urban planning should not only be a law to limit, a survey of the private investment, but an effective, immediate, achievable, proposition. That is to say, it was necessary to go from systematic future visions, but abstract, to precise propositions and sharp realizations. This implied a second criteria: these sharp realizations should be projects of the collective space. Not just urban space – 273

squares, streets, gardens, etc. – but also of large infrastructures and social equipments. As a consequence, more then «urban spaces» we should talk about «public spaces». Public spaces that are, equipments as well as road structures, squares, gardens or monuments, they are places to meet, the scenery and the signs of the collective identity.’ (Bohigas, 1996, 210)

At this time when the projects were commissioned, the one by Sola Morales was the first to transform the relations between city and port. This shift was not produced through the signature of protocols between institutions or the production of a new master plan, but instead through a new type of thinking, where design projects are analyzed and discussed individually. In his analysis Hebbert (2004, 95) argues that ‘Barcelona’s most precious contribution to urbanism is less the primacy of projects over plans than the dialogue between urbanism and contemporary architecture’. The administrative structures Bohigas found operating in the city were disorganized and inefficient, each was concerned with its own problems. In reordering the procedures of the existing administration, models were turned upside down – ‘the general policy framework was left on the shelf.’ (Hebbert, 2004, 94) In the new framework each department of the municipality was participating in the future projects together, making an effort to develop strong relationships between interest groups, because relationships are better than rules. In the new procedure architects and urban designers were asked to bring forward proposals to be discussed. From these preliminary sketches various entities involved collaborated in a common project, so that together they could start the transformation. The relationship between city and port improved through the implementation of the chosen project, containing buildings and space for public use.

We have argued that cities rely on public spaces more than they do on buildings to claim their urban identity. Cities are the main physical source of identity for their residents who use common spaces to gather, to wonder, to share and exchange, and simply to stare at the landscape. The San Francisco waterfront renovation is giving us that evidence. It is a pioneer case study which has experienced a long process of many stages in which the final product is, in our opinion less important than the process itself. The first plans shifted from the highly profitable high rise solutions to making public use of the waterfront the priority. The city voted against the idea of building hotels on


piers and also against the plans the Port Authority had submitted, choosing instead to create a centre for education of the Bay. Thus it evolved from a financial operation aimed at profitability and detrimental to urban quality, to a series of small scale projects that accepting the premise that waterfront renovation is neither necessarily spectacular nor dependant on projects presenting a surprising new urban image.

The land, piers and wharves were not accepted as immutable features but as part of an evolving territory supporting new needs for the city. Artificial land was built up for specific purposes in the same way that it is now being transformed for new uses. In San Francisco the city and port areas were represented in the same drawing, together establishing “points of major views at water level� pointing from and towards the city. Also in this drawing park and plaza areas are extended from the city to the area of the industrial port, and include pedestrian promenades. San Francisco has enhanced relations between city and port through events, art and recreation, brought the city back to the water and succeeded in removing the existing barriers. The freeway located between city and port was removed and at present the longitudinal movement along the edge is a smoke-free, noise-free with a lively collection of trams brought from other cities. Some of the buildings located at the port area have recapture their lost identity readapting to urban life, giving prominence to activities related to culture, sports, tourism, art, education shopping and markets. Public surveys to determine the necessities of the population are an efficient tool to test new programs and formulate ideas.

At Barcelona the relationship between city and port boosted the urban social and cultural environment and reinvented the past dignity of a degraded cityscape, during a unique political situation that empowered the architects, working in a true democratic tradition, to grasp the opportunity to build spaces for people to gather and showed the port as a central space with emphasis on visual openness. Local residents were not driven out from their neighborhoods while new groups came to live and work in the area, reducing gentrification. Public art programs and an active cooperation between architects and artists were created to improve a previously decadent area that now became more alive, more dynamic, with improved street life, attracting new residents and more commerce. Making pedestrian mobility and social interaction the priority, transformed streets and squares into traffic free zones for both residents and visitors, 275

and provided transversal accessibility from the residential neighborhoods to the waterfront

We have argued the cultural significance of public spaces at the waterfront which at the present face the threat of privatization. In Barcelona, instead of attracting large investors whose commercial demands usually lead to decide against the use of the urban space for the benefit of the public, preferring instead the privatization of the public space, the municipality and port authority have considered the priorities of each body and only then invited developers to invest. They realize that the city and port transformation is not the concern of the investor but a collective responsibility. Through the creation of flexible regulations small investors found interest in renovating their own properties in the central areas, proving that several small investors generate more development that can be achieved by few investors with large sums of money.

Several authors through their communications at International Conferences such as AIVP (Association International des Villes et Ports) and Waterfronts of Art, and through publications are examining the present day transformations occurring between the city and the port, claim that the key concept is imagination, therefore the analyses of imaginative projects becomes fundamental for future debate. The small case studies raise different ideas about the possible topics for debate. In all the presented projects the fusion of a strong conceptual idea and its representation was emphasized, and all demonstrated how powerful imagination was capable of transforming the territory. The projects of architecture and landscape which have been selected are intended to show the possibilities offered when urban life is extended over the industrial port and reaches the water.


5 a. Alexandre Noel, 1789


5 b. The composition shows a fragment of the painting representing the Rocha de Conde de Ă“bidos area, juxtaposed by a photograph of the of the modern means of transportation at present.

6. Composition with two aerial photographs of the Alcântara dock taken in the 1920s when the industrial port was concluded and in the 1990s with the addition of the container terminal.


7 a. View from Jardins do Palรกcio Marques de Abrantes, 1800s (unknown author)

7 b. Composition presents the juxtaposition of two images of the city of Lisbon. Both seen from the same site, the painting and the photograph are two hundred years apart.


Architecture is one of the narrators of the city, bringing art to urban design, and constituting a gallery of examples that illustrate what we found to demonstrate the philosophical approach regarding waterfront projects which best supports that argument. We have used these examples to formulate an hypothesis to test whether these projects implemented or to be implemented at the waterfront are capable of improving the relation between citizens and their river, of favoring not just a claim for the water but also the symbolic centrality of this site in the city. These projects allow for the discussion of previous solutions as we adopt the standpoint that awareness of our cultural heritage is not merely a legacy but what we create today. It has been argued that “the control of an historical vision of the city – in a certain way as ‘frozen in time’ – would complicate its perception as a changing and dynamic entity” (Monclús & Guàrdia, 2004, 22) Such a perception becomes stronger when there is no evidence of alternatives to specific problems.

One of the projects discussed, the Tenerife Cruise Terminal International competition brought forward the idea of organizing and taking advantage of conflicting urban flows. In their design proposal Foreign Office Architects, find that cities with dynamic topographic features tend to have three-dimensional flows and they have addressed the usual ‘cut off effect’ located between port and city. In their proposal the barrier would lose impact by creating new topographic features and by the manipulation of infrastructural systems, FOA thus emphasizing the importance of connecting the port area to the city behind it. The conflict between pedestrian traffic and the roadway was solved in a sustainable manner because their flows were integrated in the forms of the buildings. Consequently the building become a truly urban conquest of the port area and new forms of architecture emerge from the contemporary challenges of city and port relations. The concept of the a new landscape that covers modern means of transportation and its necessary infrastructures was also present at the Olympic Sculpture Park in Seatlle (Weiss and Manfredi, 2001) but FOA here, extended the concept to the form of the building.

The most relevant and prominent aspect of the Yokohama waterfront renovation is the preservation of dry docks and that should be considered in Lisbon. It connects the user to the genius loci, that is to say to the soul of the site, opposing the mainstream process of waterfront renovation stigmatized by an ‘efficient disneyfication’. As Berman 280

(2001,65) puts it ‘Preservation also corresponds to site art in how it can emotionally and intellectually stimulate people. At one level, a historically preserved site can add beauty to the environment. At another it can make people think about an area’s past and their own connections with that history.’ This happens successfully at the Kishamich Promenade where the user may indulge in the art of contemplation and experience serenity even amid the hasty urban life around them. It became a ‘path’ for the contemplation of nature, and discretely connects past and present. The dry docks are an industrial element that can be reused today for a variety of cultural and educational activities that add value to the citizens quality of life. Industrial architecture of the port is able to push one step forward, because it adds to our previous knowledge of the world. Japanese architectural heritage is acted upon by following an ‘evolving heritage’ philosophy, not seen as a frozen element in an open-air museum, but an icon that stimulates people’s perception of the culture of the site.

It has been argued that projects for the new infrastructures are including the participation of artists and scientists and that artistic events and artists interventions play a significant role in the design of symbolic common spaces for each community. The art program promenart at Sydney had the initiative to invite artist to produce art work related to the balance of eco-systems at the waterfront. The event was useful in establishing whether scientific-artistic relationships are needed between nature and the city. The art work we have selected responds to the natural forces and symbolically subverts the common idea that man must always control nature through machinery. The movement of machines is controlled by man; in this case it is controlled by nature. Tied to tide and Archeology of Bathing are rich in cultural memory, and provoke new thoughts and insights becoming memorable themselves as the present metaphorically evokes a past that has never been.

They are pieces of civilization placed amongst nature. The event brought artists to the forefront of the transformation process in an intimate and intuitive manner that allowed them to feel the ties with the site and re-inventing its cultural marks. Their work has contributed to the public debate about the future of the relation between port and city at the Sidney harbor. Groups of artists, including architects, are expected to add personal contributions and ‘emphasize the fusion of the physical with the imaginative structures, as the human environment is the product of powerful and yet diffuse imaginations’. 281

At present, we have lost the understanding of the mechanisms operating the machines and they are constantly evolving, replacing previous versions. «The machinery when outdated is dismantled, and we face an important question about what to do with it. Should we erase the narrative of times in which the port and maritime activity played a relevant role in the identity of port cities? Or can we use them to provide a new architectural experience, one that narrates the site historical background, not as place frozen in time, but as a progressive and evolutionary industrial heritage» (Garcia, 2001, 267), as presented at the Master’s Thesis where the re-use of one container crane at the Port of Oakland became the centre of the research (see plate 8). Through the various case studies we have given evidence that industrial heritage could evolve into new forms of use, primarily oriented for public use reshaping concepts of public space.

8. Model of the proposal to transform one container crane at the port of Oakland – Pedro R. Garcia Master’s Thesis (1996)


One of the purposes of this study is to develop a methodology to discuss the problems existing between city and port as they are presented today. This thesis does not have the answer, but since the previous answers for the object of this study presented by means of urban design, architecture and planning policies have failed, we will try to formulate the question differently in order to find a possible way to achieve answers for the present situation. On one hand we did in depth research to establish the objects of this study through historic research and on the other hand we compare similar case studies of port-city transformation. However, the examples presented and discussed in this study should establish a parallel for the object of study (see plate 9, 10 and 11). According to the methodology adopted we merge some of the case studies to specific sites at the port area of Lisbon. The juxtaposition of other cases sharing similar features and resembling its city port relations, have the same value as a design project. They have the quality to shift our perception about a site (see plate 12 to 18). If one can shift one’s perception by looking at a visual composition, then more people can be engaged in the process of transformation in which the city and port of Lisbon are involved. To quote Crosby’s (1970, 10) analyses of this process, In the maturely grown city, with a vast accumulation of structures, however, the problem is quite different, and the economics, like everything else, are no longer simple. A vast number of complicating factors have arisen, owing to the human activity in the years since the building was built; a million individual decisions have affected the building, the site and the neighborhood. Values have risen or dropped, and above all, the community itself has become involved in decisions once left to the individual developer.

It is our understanding that the use of cross reference and referred shift of perception has been in some of the case studies presented the engine for a valuable process of transformation that had not been imagine before. According to this line of thought, the elaboration of competition of ideas, and the consequent public discussion of the proposals presented by architects are of main value for the community to imagine change beyond their initial perception of the situation. We have presented the analysis of the extension of Rua do Alecrim (see page 135 chapter 4), the 18th century solution to eliminate the barrier created by the existing topography. The design of the street and square linked the lower level of the port to the town on the hill (see plate 19 – p. 290).


9. Aerial view of Museu de Arte Antiga facing Jardim 9 de Abril and the Port of Lisbon at Rocha C. Ă“bidos

10. View of the Santos Quay at the area of Jardim de Santos and Av. 24 de Julho

11. Aerial view of Alcântara Container Terminal


12. Aerial photo with montage showing an extension of Jardim 9 de Abril over the Port of Lisbon 13. Scheme shows a composition with section of the industrial port and the extension of Jardim 9 de Abril borrowed from the project of the Olympic Sculpture Park at Seattle.


14. Perspective of virtual model of the neighborhood in the city and the port area. Black – plans of the Ancient Art Museum and the red Cross Headquarters; Green – volumetric concept that proposes the extension of the surface of the Jardim 9 de Abril to the level of the industrial port landfill.

15. Section: collage ilustrates the volumetric concept built over the existing road and railway line.




16. Above: View of Santos Quay with photomontage of Cruise Terminal project that FOA submitted for Tenerife Competition.

17. Page 287: Aerial view of the Santos Quay, the Jardim de Santos and Av. 24 de Julho juxtaposed with plan of the project for the Cruise Terminal.

18. Page 288: Aerial view of Alcântara Container Terminal juxtaposed with Manuel Vicente project for the Expo’98


19. Transversal section along Rua do Alecrim according to the analyses presented in chapter 4 (p. 135) Legend of colors: Gray – initial shape of land / Dark gray –landfill / brick – flyover and Pombal’s landfill extension / Light gray – existing buildings

Complexity and Flexibility

The idea of complexity on the waterfront is shared by several authors who do not defend a new model but advocate a new way of addressing the city and port relations, seeing this approach becoming a new laboratory of urban quality and focusing the current discussions on the new opportunities for both citizens and port activities. Bruttomesso, (2001, 44) dealing with the environmental and urban features of the waterfront highlights some general concepts about the necessity to open up the waterfront to the public, the development of accessibility with limitations for private vehicles and the upgrading of waterborne transport, and improving of the quality of water. It is the relationship established between the city, the port and the citizens that determines the success of the process. Relationships are based on people who may have the ability of leadership. When they achieve high levels of mutual trust and cooperation the projects manage to re-establish the urban relationship, with the river that has been gradually eroded.

At present the laws relating to the land under APL jurisdiction do not encourage a diversity of small private investors or ventures by real estate developers. Several European cities have been changing regulations to overcome specific problems. In the Portuguese legal system and its various institutions there is an endemic inertia that offers a great deal of resistance to the necessary changes in the legal framework which may narrow new possibilities. The Expo’98 should be considered an exception, for it was mainly controlled and directed by the central governmen


20. Transversal sections, above – Santos next to Largo da Igreja de Santos, middle: Rocha C. Óbidos through jardim 9 de Abril, below: Alcântara through the Museu do Oriente.


20. (cont.) Legend of colors: Gray – initial shape of land / Dark gray – port landfill / brick – new topographies / Light gray – existing buildings


Some projects for the transformation of the Lisbon waterfront areas have been criticized for their fragmented urban policy, in the sense that connections between new areas and existing neighborhoods are not considered nor proposed, and because the urban ‘showcase’ nature of such projects dominates the waterfront development. (Crosby, 1970, 91) In the future city we will need monuments, places to visit, to look and wonder at, for this is the purpose of our hard won mobility. In the coming years of mass international transportation, when whole populations will move every year each summer, the pressure on the older, established monuments will be unbelievable. APL took this idea into consideration when it decided to built the new (Vessel Control Traffic) VTC tower and chose architect Gonçalo Byrne to produce an ‘exceptional building with a monumental presence’ that has given a new prominent feature to the image of the city. Considering the importance of public spaces, from which the tower is excluded apparently for security reasons, APL has invested extensively in the reconfiguration of a strip of former port facilities into public spaces along the area of Junqueira. This process is commented by Busquets (1999, pp.97-98) who argues that on the waterfront, “the public space should be seen in terms of the new cultural role being stimulated by contemporary use. Originally, the park was an aesthetic or moral facility introduced by hygienists as a counterbalance to the heavily industrialized city. Later, in the modern city, new dimensions were added to the open space: sports and other facilities. Now, once again, new demands are being made on open space: in addition to their traditional possibilities for use, the public is now asking for a new circuit and the introduction of art and culture. They want something that is very special to their city, but they also want space for leisure activities.” Most of the artists invited to participate in waterfront projects deal with the future role of the water and the fragile equilibrium of nature, helping to bring these issues into public discussions that, in turn, contributes for new options and better solutions. A considerable amount of public art of the city and a number of significant buildings are located along the waterfront. Therefore it makes sense to reflect upon Sophie Trelcat’s (2000, p. 52) words “Growth is based on tension that opens directions and integrates a considerable degree of liberty for spatial and functional alternatives, yet keeps as close


as possible to the real needs of the city.” One the arguments structuring this study is that the participation of the present generation should be in the construction of the city as part of a pattern of various generations, in a way that does not hold the solution to all problems but instead provides a number of suggestions to improve the present situation at the port area. That necessarily requires time, effort and research to bring flexible uses of maritime and urban activities without compromising the future of the port area after facing a process of transformation for the last couple of decades that will continue to change and evolve in unpredictable ways. As Boeri (2001, 407) puts it, ‘Designing a port area means learning to deal with the issue of uncertainty and the unforeseeable nature of the future of an urban coastal area’

Final Considerations – How to Imagine Transformation

At present several authors remark on the increasing number of possibilities for cities to reinvent their waterfronts. While ports specialized their services and relocated their activities further away from congested urban centres, there was a shift towards recreational and tourism related activities, and the citizens evident enjoyment of the new public spaces at the waterfront have proved this move to be successful. The spaces newly available have a strong cultural significance and are highly valuable in enabling port cities to redefine their quality of urban life, leisure and maritime activity to create a new urban image at the port area. The cities of Barcelona, Rotterdam, Marseille, Genoa are setting up international competitions and requesting suggestions from other cities about what to do and how to do it. Other cities with a narrower vision have been developing plans in order to sell former port areas to the private sector and collect income. Developers, when not oriented, tend to privatize the public spaces around the new developments and adopt conceptual solutions, of architecture and urban design which result in private condominiums.


21. The image illustrates the relation of scale between the port area and the blocks typology

Some of the international competitions are developing partnerships between the public

and the private sector to redesign their waterfronts, with more or less public participation. In many cases the process of transformation, is requiring major investments to reshape large surfaces. This becomes particularly relevant because contemporary society has developed powerful means to transform and shape the territory, based on technological expertise and the ‘over accumulation of capital’, which requires a permanent economic growth. The public protests against the urban development on former port areas in places like Bilbau, Barcelona, Lisbon, Rio de Janeiro and San Francisco, reveal that when the surroundings of industrial ports become an area for developers to discuss in terms of prices per square meter, citizens manifest against these developments as they realize they will not increase the quality of their urban life.

At the beginning of this work we formulated questions regarding not just the process of waterfront transformation but also the uses the cities were putting to the port area to reestablish their relations with the water. We question who could best develop a new


21. (cont.) implemented at Av. RĂŠpublica.

research project for the port area. Since the Port Authority is conditioned by maritime transportation efficiency and not by urban design concerns, who could lead the process, considering that the port should participate in it? The Port Authority should define their present needs and what future development should be undertaken in this or that location. By doing so APL defines which land should be designated either as a whole or in smaller sections, for transformation. Part of the argument of this study was centred on the difficulty of successfully implementing waterfront redevelopment plans next to historical urban areas because of the complicated and impoverished relationship between the administrative bodies. Two examples that bore out this thesis are the successful transformations, of Port Vell in Barcelona and the San Francisco industrial port, where new models were found based on city and port relations rather than upon waterfront development plans. To include the participation of the municipality, port authority and the population Barcelona invested in projects of architecture rather than planning policies, in San Francisco, the city and port representatives produced drawings together, in St. Paul the Mayor created a non-profit corporation to coordinate all the


process, to mention just a few. Three cities that found new models to imagine transformation from which both the port and the city of Lisbon should benefit from their previous experiments.

This study could not be reduced to a discussion exclusively concerned with ports, or maritime traffic, or city planning, or urban design or with the industrial heritage legacy of the port area. All of these are involved. Any transformation must come from a fruitful dialogue between Municipality and Port Authority, but they alone will not be able to overcome the existence of major physical barriers creating a ‘cut off effect’ between city and port. The examples of San Francisco and Barcelona are different in that respect, but both cities have been able to eliminate the physical barrier that created a ‘cut off effect’. Both gave priority to transversal pedestrian traffic from the city to the port area by crossing over these large modern infrastructures that are vital for the urban flow of traffic.

In the case of Lisbon – the Municipality, the Railway Company, and the Port Authority are the most dominant actors. New programs to be implement at the industrial landfill should value both the urban life and the port activity. Cities envision improving the lives of their citizens and the ports search for efficiency and economic benefits. New activities emerging in this context will bring urban features towards the water and maritime activities; recreational, cultural, tourism, cruise terminals, etc towards the historic city. If the city’s ‘raison d’être’ is the port, they have grown together and depend on each other. One of the challenges is to find the necessary new activities and programmes that have been waiting to find a place and give a positive contribution to the relation between urban life and port activity. To do this the Municipality and the Port Authority should find other partners to update port facilities like the cruise terminal or the European Maritime Agency, but should not shut down existing facilities prior to having a common agreement between them, as happened with ‘doca pesca’ which was active and brought an added value for both city and port. The closure in 2003 was contrary to the strategies followed by Barcelona and San Francisco that have kept their facilities and expanded adapting to new necessities.

Applying the criteria established in this research work, we conclude by compiling the historic and geographic information about Lisbon. The research presents the area of the 297

industrial port as a landfill constructed over the water, a prosthesis along the city which is a new territory that changed the limits of both city and river, affecting the natural balance between land and water. We have made comparisons, between the port area of Lisbon and the other case studies mentioned to present ‘mutual visions, transverse visions’ as Monclús and Guàrdia have pointed out.

Significant results can be obtained by studying examples of port cities that have commissioned research projects from other cities. In Rotterdam, at the heart of the historic city - De Boompjes, while organizing the event European Capital of Culture, in 2001 the city asked experts from a number of foreign cities to draw up new design for De Boompjes. The organizers felt that inspiration could be drawn and lessons learnt from strategies adopted elsewhere. Designers from other cities contributed with a specific project for the historical central area of the city and proposed solutions to reestablish a relationship with the river. The city of Rotterdam provided them with rigorous historic and geographic information and asked the participants to developed their own visions. In the case of «Marseille – Making the City by the Sea» in 2001, the method used was also similar. Scholars gave an extensive historic and geographic background to foreign designers who were asked to present creative projects on the improvement of city and port relations. There the Port Authority, the Municipality and the population are working together as they need to expand their understanding of the subject. It is a process of public debate where ‘borrowing’ creative visions, produced by architectural drawings contribute to the discussion about the sites future urban design. Showing evidence that new design work can shift the common perception to one that conceives transformation not as a final product but more as a process of thinking.





1. Site plan of Lisbon / Pedro R. Garcia 2. L’architecture d’aujourd’hui, based on Wilson, Ariane drawings – five periods of time on the waterfront. 3. Zoning of the Port of Lisbon – Unidade de Intervenção 2, from Santo Amaro to Alcântara, p. 52. 4. Zoning of the Port of Lisbon – Unidade de Intervenção 3, from Rocha Conde d’Óbidos to Santos, p.60. 5 and 6. Port of lisbon: Constrói as vias do futuro – Nova Alcântara. 7. View of Santos, A Wagner, 1808 Museu da Cidade. 8. Valis: Valorização de Lisboa – View of Terreiro do Paço / Praça do Comércio. 9. Phylogenesis –conceptual scheme of the proposal for the competition to Tenerife 2003.

Chapter 1

1. The New Waterfront / photo. Grupo de Des. Urbano 1993. 2. Beyond the Edge: London as it could be – Exhibition London 1986 / Photo. of the model New Architecture: Foster, Rogers, Stirling. 3. Architecture and Water vol 65 nº 1,2. 4, 5 e 6. Beyond the Edge – Olympic Sculpture Park, concept / photo. transversal section Weiss e Manfredi. 7. Valis: Valorização de Lisboa – Photo. and drawing / Vista Necessidades, Sacramento, Port of lisbon. 8 e 9.De Boompjes fourvisions on a waterfront / Drawing by Jordi Henrich with Joan Forgas / Profil and photo. of the model.


Chapter 2

1. Zoning do Port of lisbon – Março 1995 – Map of the jurisdiction by the Port Authority – APL 2. Proposal based on the Master plan for the port area controlled byAPL / 100 anos do porto de lisboa. 3. Based on the areal photo of the industrial port at the Santos and Alcântara area / Lisbon and its surroundings. 4. Map of the Iberian Peninsula / Jornal O Público. 5. Map of the city and the port of Sines / 6. Intermodal transportation scheme at the container terminal XXI em Sines / pamphlet of the Port of Singapore. 7. Model of the Project between Santos and Alcântara – POZOR / Miguel Correia – 10 anos de Arquitectura. 8. Drawing of the Plan POZOR / Published on informative pamphlet. 9 e 10. Photograph of railway between Santos and Cais do Sodré in 2001 and photomontage / photo. Pedro R. Garcia. 11. Santos – Santa Apolónia / Project by Arq. Gravata Filipe, APL. 12. Plan of the Project designed by Arq. Ricardo A. M. Borges de Sousa / Concurso de Ideias para a frente Ribeirinha de Lisboa 13. Panoramic view of Santos and Alcântara in the 1850s / Arquivo Municipal de Lisboa P13021 (N11205) 14. Photograph of the Aterro da Boavista area/ Pedro R. Garcia. 15. Composition of the Port and city of Lisboa / Patrícia Martinez. 16. Maqueta conceptual da frente ribeirinha / photo. Sara Gonçalves. 17. Miguel Correia – 10 anos de Arquitectura / Zoning proposal of Cais do Sodré area/ section Terry Farrel and Partners. 18. Map of future cruise terminal / João Figueira de Sousa /


Chapter 3

1. O Porto de Lisboa 1960 APL / illustration by Hans Stadein 1592 / photo. of the construction of the dry docks and piers at Alcântara. 2. Map of Lisbon in 1147, De expugnatione Lysxbonensi (The Conquest of Lisbon) / drawing by Charles Wendell David. 3. Map of Lisbon / Referências Históricas do Porto de Lisboa / fig. 3 overlaps the urban fabric in the XII century and the urban reconstruction during the Pombal period. 4. Ilustrations in Elucidario Nobiliarchico – Revista de História e de Arte. 5. Legend: Planta topográfica da zona marginal de Lisboa de S. José Ribamar até ao convento dos Grilos / Museu da Cidade. 6. View of the city ilustrates the Hidrographic study 1756 / M. Bellin. 7. Plan, Explicação do Caes Novo entre 1733-1763 / Carlos Mardel / A.H.M.O.P. cota 27 – C. 8. Detail of previous image. 9. Os Portos Marítimos de Portugal, Atlas III / fig.2 Projecto de Carlos Mardel – Orla Marginal da Cidade de Lisboa. 10. Historical evolution of Aterro da Boavista / Drawing by António Ressano Garcia Lamas

and Alexandre Braz Mimoso. 11. Transversal sections of Tagus river/ A.A. Baldaque da Silva – Estudo Histórico Hydrographico sobre a Barra e o Porto de Lisboa. 12. Legend: Projecto da obra do Porto de Lisboa na secção compreendida entre a Praça do Comércio e Alcântara / A.A. Baldaque da Silva – Estudo Histórico Hydrographico

sobre a Barra e o Porto de Lisboa. 13. Project by Hersent / Gabinete de Estudos Olissiponenses / CT 24G, photograph of the area C 31 – 2 14. Projecto Reeves fig. 38, 39 / Os Portos Marítimos de Portugal, Atlas III. 15. Projecto de Thomé de Gamond fig 17 / Os Portos Marítimos de Portugal, Atlas III. 16. The industrial port landfill report according to the commision in 1905 / Revista de Obras Públicas e Minas. 17. Legend: Planta do rio Tejo e suas Margens obras propostas pela Comissão Nomeada [em 16 de Março de 1883] /A.H.M.O.P. 18. Plan of the port by Francisco Pereira da Silva 1884. 302

Chapter 4

1. Drawing / Manuel de Matos / Ilustração Portuguesa 1906. 2. Project by Louis de Lenne for the Tramway – Plan Générale du Tramway à construire depuis Sta Apolónia à Ajuda [8 plans], 1862 A.H.M.O.P. 3. Plan of central Lisbon / António Belo / Revista da Associação dos Engenheiros Portugueses, nº 728. 4. Bird’s eye view at Cais do Sodré / Miguel Correia – 10 anos de arquitectura. 5. Project for the river and maritime gateway, A. Cid Perestrelo / Revista da Associação dos Engenheiros Portugueses, nº 677. 6. Areal photograph / Le port de Lisbonne – APL. 7. Photograph of Arsenal / Instituto Hidrográfico. 8. Observações Trigonométricas que foram efectuadas no local – made in1767, by Sargento Guilherme Clyden from the Academia Militar / A.A. Baldaque da Silva – Estudo Histórico Hydrographico sobre a Barra e o Porto de Lisboa. 9. Projecto sobre a Defensa do Porto de Lisboa / Francisco Pedro Celestino Soares, 1847. 10. Drawing of the protection system based on the use of parallel chains linked by boats/ Contra-almirante António Gregório de Freitas / Memória acerca da Defesa Marítima do Porto de Lisboa. 11. Sketch F. Juvarra / Mediterrâneo. 12. Painting: Lisboa vista da Praia dos Santos em 1788 / Albert Dufourcq. 13. Based on the plan: Explicação do Caes Novo entre 1733-1763 / C. Mardel / AHMOP. 14. Based on the plan Fig. 2 / Adolpho Loureiro / Os Portos Marítimos de Portugal, Atlas III. 15. Plan form the period of Pombal / Eugénio dos Santos, Carlos Mardel, E. S. Poppe / Atlas de Lisboa. 16. Drawing and photomontage / Tiago Freire e Pedro R. Garcia 17. Drawing – perspective / Arq. Ricardo Faria Blanc / Lisboa a cidade e o rio. 18. photo. of the model / Pedro R. Garcia / workshop CALA – FAUTL. 19. Conceptual diagram of the Project for Braço de Prata / Arq. Paisagista Gonçalo Ribeiro Telles. 20. Drawing based on the Project by Gonçalo Ribeiro Telles / montage by Pedro R. Garcia. 303

Chapter 5

1. Photomontage / Valis – Valorização de Lisboa / Cedru. 2. Aerial view / Parque Expo s.a. 3. Marketing material. 4. Photograph / Parque Expo s.a. 5. Aerial view. 6. Plan of the intervention area / Parque Expo. 7. Transversal section/ Pedro R. Garcia. 8. Areal view / Parque Expo.

Chapter 6

2,3,4. Drawing / Pedro R. Garcia. 5. Project / John S. Bolles Associates, 1961. 6. Arial view of the city and port of San Francisco / photo. Robert Cameron / City and Port. 7,8. Pedro R. Garcia. 9. Patterns of San Francisco Street & Property Development. 10. Picture 18 and 30 of the Ferry Building Area Study by John S. Bolles Associates, 1967. 11. Landscaping plan / Northern Waterfront Plan, 1967 Department of City Planning. 12. Photo. Pedro R. Garcia. 13. [a,b] Photo. Pedro R. Garcia, [c] Photo. Ira Kahn / Beyond the Edge [d] Photo. newspaperl O Público. 14. Map / San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission,1975. 15. Parking map / Ferry Building / Roma design group. 16. Aerial view / Forum 2004. 17. Aerial view of Port Vell, 1991 / newspaper La Vanguardia / photo. José Maria Alguersuari. 18. El muelle Bosch i alsina nos anos 20 / newspaper La Vanguardia. 19. World Trade Center – Barcelona. 304

20. Drawing / Solá-Morales / City and Port. 21. Drawing / Enric Guell / newspaper La Vanguardia. 22,23. Based on the project for Moll de la Fusta de Solá-Morales / City and Port. 24. Drawing of the Marina / Panphlet / Forum 2004. 25. Plan / Angels Soler / newspaper La Vanguardia. 26. Photo. Pedro R. Garcia. 27. Transversal section at Alcântara e Rocha C. Óbidos / APL. 28. Map / Teresa Craveiro DMPEL – Direcção Municipal do Planeamento Estratégico de Lisboa / magazine Mediterrâneo.

29. Map / Ayuntament de Barcelona brochure Urban Spaces 1981-2001.

Capitulo 7

1. Rejuvenation project for the city Antwerp, by Toyo Ito / Sections edited by Pedro R. Garcia. 2. Model of the project for Antwerp / Toyo Ito / El Croquis. 3. Drawing by Pedro R. Garcia / Europan 7. 4,5,6. Photographs by Lisnave / Arq. Manuel Vicente archives. 7. Model of the proposal submitted to the competition for the Expo’98 / Manuel Vicente / Editing by Pedro R. Garcia. 8. Detail of the model for the competition Expo’98 / Manuel Vicente / Editing by Pedro R. Garcia. 9. Plan of the project for the cruise terminal at Santa Cruz de Tenerife / Phylogenesis – Foa’s ark. 10. Axonometric of the proposal submitted for the competition / Phylogenesis – Foa’s ark / Editing de Pedro R. Garcia. 11,12. Perspectives / Phylogenesis – Foa’s ark. 13. Plan [p.139] and model photo. [p. 134] / Zaha Hadid – The Complete Buildings and Projects. 14. Perspective drawing and section / Frederik Starr – International Debut / Melnikov,

Solo Architect in a New Society / Editing Pedro R. Garcia. 15. Plan Dockyard Garden / Richard W. Berman / brochure by the city of Yokohama.


16, 17,18. Photograph of the Dockyard Garden / Richard W. Berman / brochure by the city of Yokohama. 19. Photograph of Kishamichi Promenade / Richard W. Berman / brochure by the city of Yokohama. 20. Landscape Plan of Kishamichi Promenade / Richard W. Berman / brochure of the city of Yokohama. 21. Photograph by Derick Ross / The New Waterfront. 22. Photograph / Jennifer Turpin & Michele Crawford / magazine Art Australia. 23. Photo. presented by Catherine De Lorenzo / The Arts in the Urban Development Watrefronts of Art II. 24. photograph by P. Knego / Artship Foundation / 25. Drawing / Artship Foundation / 26. Drawing by Julian Harrap / The Architects Journal. 27. Photograph by Julian Harrap / The Architects Journal. 28. Drawing / Marissa Mainiquiz / Progetti per L’arsenale di Venezia.


1,2. Photograph and photomontage by Pedro R. Garcia. 3. Photo. of the diagram composed by Sara Gonçalves and Pedro R. Garcia. 4. Composition with the aerial photograph of aterro da Boavista and a fragment of the plan by J. N. Tinoco / Pedro R. Garcia. 5. Composition merging Alexandre Jean Noel painting, 1789 Fundação Ricardo Espírito Santo Silva, and picture taken in 2003 / Pedro R. Garcia. 6. Composition using two aerial views, taken in 1920 and in 2000. 7. Composition merging painting of vista dos Jardins do Palácio Marques de Abrantes and picture taken 2003/ Colecção Vieira da Silva. 8. Model of container crane / Pedro R. Garcia 9. Aerial view of Jardim 9 de Abril and surrounding area / Photo. APL / Lisbon and its surroundings – Frederic Marjay

10. Photo. of the port area at Santos terminal and Av. 24 de Julho / Pedro R. Garcia. 11. Aerial photo. of the Alcântara container terminal/ Atlas de Lisboa. 12. Photomontage with the aerial photo. at Jardim 9 de Abril / Pedro R. Garcia. 306

13. Composition merges plate 5 and section of the industrial landfill and section of Olympic Sculpture Park / Pedro R. Garcia.

14. Drawing of 3D computer model of Rocha C. Óbidos area / Pedro R. Garcia e Rolanda Ramalho. 15. Drawing of transversal section of Rocha C. Óbidos area / Pedro R. Garcia e Filipe Lopes 16. Composition merges orthophoto and part of the plan of the project for Tenerife by FOA/ Pedro R. Garcia. 17. Composition with photograph and perspective view of the Tenerife Project by FOA/ Pedro R. Garcia. 18. Composition merges aerial photo. of Alcântara terminal and the Project by Arq. Manuel Vicente for the Expo’98 competition. 19. Transversal sections / Pedro R. Garcia e Filipe Lopes. 20. Transversal sections / Pedro R. Garcia. 21. Plan of the industrial port of Lisbon / Pedro R. Garcia e Gonçalo Saldanha.



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Ph.D. Dissertation - Regeneration of Lisbon Waterfront. The industrial port and the city  

The relations between the Industrial Port of Lisbon and the city center of Lisbon are the object of study of this work. the port activity ch...

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