The Superblock programme is taking a step forward and becoming Superblock Barcelona, the street transformation model for the entire city, helping citizens to reclaim part of the space currently occupied by private vehicles. The goal is to achieve a healthy, greener, fairer and safer public space that promotes social relations and the local economy.
After completing projects in smaller areas, such as the Poblenou, Horta and Sant Antoni superblocks, we are now making a leap in terms of scale and speed, creating a network of green hubs and squares throughout the city where the pedestrian is the protagonist and has priority.
This new vision is starting to be applied as a priority in the Cerdà area in general and the Eixample district in particular, extending the network of green hubs and squares that has already started in the Sant Antoni neighbourhood. Work is already underway to convert part of Carrer del Consell de Cent, Carrer de Rocafort, Carrer del Comte Borrell and Carrer de Girona into green hubs, and to create four large squares at the junctions between them.
ACTIVITY IN EIXAMPLE
GREEN HUBS AND SQUARES IN EIXAMPLE
Work on the future green hubs of Carrer del Consell de Cent, Carrer de Rocafort, Carrer del Comte Borrell and Carrer de Girona is already underway! These spaces are being redeveloped in accordance with a new street model in which pedestrians are the protagonists. They will be single-platform streets, with a strong presence of greenery, new recreational spaces and new urban furniture, which are conceived to promote the social use of the street and boost local commerce.
In addition, four large squares, each measuring roughly 2,000 square metres, will be created at the junctions of Carrer del Consell de Cent with Carrer de Rocafort, Carrer del Comte Borrell, Carrer de Enric Granados and Carrer de Girona.
Superilles a l'Eixample
El nou model d'urbanització de Superilla Barcelona, basat en eixos verds i places, complementa altres actuacions que es van fer en el passat al districte de l'Eixample, com al barri de Sant Antoni. A més, a l'hora de treballar les actuacions amb el veïnat, les entitats i els comerciants, l'Ajuntament de Barcelona divideix aquestes grans obres d'urbanització en sectors més petits. Així es pot debatre amb detall cada projecte tenint en compte les característiques de cada barri.
A continuació pots consultar aquestes divisions més concretes de cada àmbit, així com els nous espais del districte on ja s'està treballant amb el veïnat:
ACTIONS IN THE REST OF THE CITY
COMPLETED AND PROJECTED GREEN HUBS AND SUPERBLOCKS
Superblock Barcelona will gradually spread throughout the city, creating a large network of green hubs and squares, in addition to the specific actions that have been carried out for years as part of this programme.
Below you can find the superblocks that already exist in the city, as well as the areas where work is already underway with local residents, organisations and traders with a view to extending the network of green hubs and squares:
THIS WILL BE THE 21ST CENTURY STREET
The 21st century street model, that has been designed and will be implemented in all the green hubs of the Barcelona Superblock network, represents a paradigm shift in urban planning for public spaces: it involves moving from streets designed for cars to streets designed for people, completely inverting priorities and uses.
This new street concept is based on three main pillars: encouraging life in the street, creating large recreational spaces; converting the streets into a new environmental infrastructure, with more greenery; and promoting local commerce.
THE BASIS OF THE NEW STREET MODEL
Absolute priority for pedestrians on any route, whether walking, resting or socialising. Vehicles are guests: they will be able to travel in exceptional cases, at 10 km/h, and not along straight routes, as they will have to turn at corners.
Green hubs will be single-level streets, without barriers or divisions. The current differences in height between pavements and road surfaces will be eliminated and the entire space of the street will be dedicated to social uses and people. The asphalt will go and the main paving will be panot [cement tiles], upgraded to meet new resistance requirements. Granite, a noble material already used in kerbs in Barcelona, will be used for identifying heritage buildings, facilities and unique sites.
Only 1% of the surface area of today’s streets is allocated to greenery. At least 10% will be dedicated to greenery in future streets, with trees playing a much bigger role in the landscape. It is estimated that the 21 hubs provided for in the Barcelona Superblock project will have as many as 4,000 new trees. Trees will occupy the central part of streets, so they can grow taller and more leafy.
Streets will become an environmental infrastructure committed to sustainability, efficiency and self-sufficiency. This will be achieved by switching over from a compacted and impermeable subsoil linked to the passage of vehicles, to a permeable and fertile subsoil that promotes the growth of greenery and trees and the management of the water cycle. There will be more space for the roots of trees and therefore more wealth and biodiversity. Two new plant-subsoil areas will be created for planting greenery: one between 6 m and 7 m and the other between 2 m and 3.5 m. The arrangement of the two strips will be asymmetrical to ensure maximum sun exposure. On the other hand, we will move from a model without any kind of rainwater management to one that manages 30%. Water will be collected in the plant areas, thereby contributing to its seepage and retention. Photovoltaic systems will also be incorporated to promote the energy self-sufficiency of the green hubs through the capture of sunlight (the energy will be used for the street’s own consumption: lighting and so on).
The streets will be 100% accessible to encourage all groups to stroll or relax along them, with elements such as routers, buttons, traffic lights and walkway signs, etc. Current pedestrian walkways will be maintained and a new central pedestrian walkway created. The new green hub will ensure the passage and meet the needs of the emergency services and fire brigade, waste collection and cleaning services etc. In addition, it will integrate the containers needed in each section and incorporate the new container model approved under the new Cleaning contract, which is lower and reduces the impact and the visual barriers. As for loading and unloading, this will be permitted in every area under time controls and through the use of an app.
There will be a shift from lighting designed for vehicle traffic to lighting on a human scale. The new street lamps will be lower and placed in central parts of streets, creating a new lighting system that promotes social uses.
The new model will also help to boost the local economy, by promoting commercial life from façade to façade, thanks to its single-level paving and the elimination of the barriers caused by traffic lanes, while also ensuring loading and unloading, with the establishment of specific time slots. Recent studies and the experience of the Sant Antoni Superblock demonstrate that traffic calming encourages city residents to walk along streets and shop in local establishments: in 2018, the year of the official opening of the Mercat de Sant Antoni and the Sant Antoni Superblock, the number of visitors to the Sant Antoni Shopping area increased by 16%, up to 64 million visitors a year.