This year, Barcelona commemorates the 150th anniversary of the expansion of this urban layout through a city redevelopment plan designed by the engineer Ildefons Cerdà, which is still considered a superlative example, of town planning throught the world and its studied at the top universities. Barcelona’s largest and most densely populated neighbourhood, known as the Eixample, was built over a century and a half ago and encapsulates the very life and heartbeat of the city.
When planes fly over the city, the first thing passengers see from their windows is the unmistakeable outline of the 420 symmetrically aligned residential blocks that make up the Eixample. the buildings resemble squares with openings in the centre which contain gardens and public squares. Some of the most important include the former water towerm the Torre de les Aigües, the Casa Elizalde and Palau Robert. The district is well-served by public transport and was designed so that people could get from the sea to the mountains and from one side of the city to the other conveniently and at enviable speed.
Barcelona in determined to pull out all the stops to commemorate the 150th anniversary of its major urban expansion and pays tribute to all the things that make the Eixample the very epicentre og the city. The events of Cerdà Year will commence on 11th June and the programme of activities will include a series of exhibitions. From 4th November 2009 to 7th February 2010, at the magnificient medieval royal shipyards, the Drassanes, you’ll be able to find out why Ildefons Cerdà’s Eixample has become a shining example of modern urban planning which remains valid today. The calendar also includes and exhibition about Barcelona’s urban development between 1853 and 1897, when it became a major metropolis, which will be on show at the Museum d’ Història de la Ciutat from December 2009 to March 2010. And the CCCB will be hosting a third exhibition about the Eixample as an urban reality, from 14th October 2009 to 24th February 2010.
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