Barcelona to join its seafront with a park
The city wants to unite its beaches with the rest of the city by turning 2 kilometers of asphalt into a park
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Years ago, Barcelona made the wise decision to reconnect with the sea and reopen its beaches. They are not the best in Spain, but they would enter the top 10 urban beaches worldwide. Now, the city wants to improve that space that connects its beaches with the rest of the city. The goal is to turn almost 2 kilometers of pure asphalt into a park-like promenade.
The works will cost about 45 million euros (approximately $52 million) and will complete the “facade of the city.” Barcelona wants to innovate in the naturalization of this space, giving new citizen uses to the urban coast. The idea is called “From parking to park” and it has already completed the first part: you can no longer park in that area.
The new park will take into account the climate crisis and the particular fragility of the area due to a foreseeable rise in sea level. But the grass won't grow until 2023 when the project can get underway. Right now, the plan is open to contributions from residents and entities in the area in a participatory process.
In this phase, citizens can comment on how to include the gender perspective in the future park, how to make it accessible and how to move to and within it, among other debates. When that brainstorming is over, the authors will have one year to develop a project that meets all the needs of the neighborhood.
Barcelona will also have to wait for the State to take the step of granting the city the competence to manage its maritime land front. Once this transfer is made, Barcelona also wants to install equipment for the city in that space. Among the options, still distant, are a marine zoo or a Hermitage museum.
Everything so that a privileged place facing the sea becomes a step that locals and visitors will know how to take advantage of. The pandemic had further devastated an area where events hardly took place and which most of the time was a parking lot for cars. Today, vehicles are no longer parked there, but the pavement is still bumpy. The people of Barcelona had gotten used to avoiding the place because although it faces the sea, it was not inviting for a walk.
Those 2 kilometers are the only ones left to link Barcelona with the towns and cities of the north, on the way to the Costa Brava. As inspiration, the idea draws from the Brooklyn Bridge Park in New York. But instead of views of the skyscrapers, there will be the Mediterranean Sea.