Open House BCN, over 160 spaces for discovering the city’s architecture

This weekend brings the tenth edition of the 48H Open House BCN, a major event offering people the chance to discover the city’s architectural wealth through guided visits, itineraries and other activities at 167 buildings and spaces all around the city. This year’s event seeks to give visibility to women architects and promote their creative talent.

25/10/2019 15:13 h

Ajuntament de Barcelona

Municipal facilities, factory houses, historical buildings and monuments all feature among the 167 places in this year’s programme for the 48H Open House, Barcelona’s annual date with architecture. The event invites everyone to discover the design of urban structures and is also a chance to discover places which can’t normally be visited and which hide unique architectural heritage in the city.

Visibility for women architects

The tenth edition of the 48H Open House pays homage to women architects, who have been overlooked and made invisible over the years and who even today have to fight for their talent to be recognised. The fictitious figure of Pilar Casas Mur, with her architecture-related name and surnames, represents all those women who have remained anonymous and have not received the recognition they deserve, as without them many great buildings standing today would not exist. Talented women who were not able to study, women who despite being able to study were never recognised for their efforts, and women who only today are starting to be valued for their professional merits.

To this end, ten women architects head the sections and geographical areas of this year’s 48H Open House BCN: Carme Pinós, Benedetta Tagliabue, Imma Jansana, Natali Canas, Maria Sisternas, Meritxell Inaraja, Blanca Noguera, Pepita Teixidor, Monsterrat Hosta and Natalia Ojeda. The work of some of them can be seen in Barcelona, such as in Plaça de la Gardunya, the Escola Massana and the houses which make up the square (by Carme Pinós), the Kalida Sant Pau building and the renovated Mercat de Santa Caterina (by Benedetta Tagliabue).

Unique municipal facilities

The extensive festival programme includes numerous public facilities and buildings, such as:

  • Ca la Dona: the renovation of the building in C/ Ripoll, used by the feminist association, is the result of a participatory project involving the entire women’s community. An architectural gem is conserved inside: part of the Roman aqueduct.
  • Ateneu el Poblet: this recently opened centre in the Sagrada Família neighbourhood reconciles the building’s historical identity with a respectful renewal project, transforming it into a functional facility open to all local people.
  • La Model: one of the city’s most notable renovation processes is to be found at this former women’s prison, now acting as a space for dialogue, meetings and exhibitions.
  • CEM Turó de la Peira: this new municipal sports centre in Nou Barris is a combination of sustainable and functional architecture, a garden-like building which fits into its surroundings and is designed to reduce its ecological footprint (solar panels, water tank and other energy optimisation measures.
  • Espai Bombers: large open-plan rooms, high ceilings, minimalist lines and glass transitions are the result from the renovation of this facility, part of the network of cultural venues in Montjuïc.
  • Homes with affordable rents for young people in Fabra i Coats: a light dry-build construction with a wooden structure for homes and steel for central foyers, an example of architecture at the service of the community.
  • Social housing and temporary accommodation in Carrer de Tànger: this set of 46 protected homes near Plaça de les Glòries follows the principles of urban, social and energy responsibility.
  • La Borda: one of the first sets of co-housing flats in Barcelona, with a sustainable and affordable design which centres on community life.
  • Water tanks in Parc de Joan Miró and Parc de les Rieres d’Horta: monumental underground structures which can’t normally be visited and which help offset the effects of climate change by cutting the risk of flooding caused by heavy rainfall.
  • Green rooftops in L’Eixample: an itinerary around some examples of green rooftops, small bastions of vegetation on terraces which generate life in underused spaces.

When is the 48H Open House BCN?

On 26 and 27 October.

Which places can be visited?

The programme includes 167 places around the city’s ten districts. There are also activities in L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Sant Joan Despí and Vilassar de Dalt.

What activities are programmed?

The full programme includes over two hundred activities in Barcelona and the metropolitan area, with guided visits, itineraries and other proposals.


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