Barcelona to get its first ECObarri

In a new chapter in the BOLD urban history of Barcelona, a few days ago it was announced that there are plans to construct a new Ecobarri in the area of Vallbona.That being an eco neighbourhood on the banks of the river Besos, alongside the motorway and rail approach to the city from France. Jordi Portabella, the head of ERC (Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya – republican left party of Catalunya) is confident that the project will be ready by 2011.

(View original in PDF in Catalan in newspaper AVUI 15 Nov 08 or scroll below for English translation)

Here is an interview in Català with Jordi Portabella about the plan

Jordi Portabella Feels that the ecobarri (eco neighborhood) of Vallbona will be a reality by the year 2011

The first sustainable zone of the city will have 1.800 dwellings | The criteria of construction they will approve of themselves of here in two months | The reference is Germany

The first ecobarri of Barcelona, situated in Vallbona, could be a reality towards the end of 2011. The president of the municipal group of ERC (Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya – republican left party of Catalunya), Jordi Portabella, was confident yesterday that the existence of sustainable new neighborhoods Barcelona will not turn into a chimera and he dared to fix a date, even though the zone where the new housings will be constructed still has to outlined.

For the time being, the criteria of the housing will be decided in some months. The creation of two eco neighbourhoods in the city is a republican initiative that was approved of unanimously at the last municipal plenary. The proposal foresees, on the one hand, the construction of some 1.800 flats in the neighborhood of Vallbona, placed in the outlying district of the city, among the Besòs river and the motorway C-17, and awaits this very important urban transformation. The location of the other neighborhood is still pending, in spite of that ERC propasal for the neighborhood of Marina del Prat Vermell, another brand new neighborhood.

The philosophy of the ecobarri seeks to reduce to the maximum the environmental impact of cities – which are responsible for the consumption of 75% of the energy of the planet- and to achieve an optimum level of self sufficiency, regarding the supply of energy, water and foods as well as in waste management of and polluting emissions. Moreover, it incorporates more interaction with nature and agriculture, and it seeks to use more public transport and bicycle.

Building materials
sustainability will also apply to the construction of the housing, with the use of recycled and non polluting materials, the adequacy of the buildings to the natural profile their site, measures to use the utmost natural light and the water resources, and good acoustic and thermal insulation. In presenting the proposal of ecobarris, ERC was inspired by other European countries, ie: Germany, Holand ,UK, Denmark, Sweeden and Finland. The main reference for them were the ecobarris of Risefeld i Vauban, in the German city of Freiburg, where they have reduced the amount of private vehicles.

Some related links to articles in Spanish and Catalan

Portabella proposa que l’Ecobarri de Vallbona funcioni com a pauta urbanísitca de tota la ciutat

Vallbona acollirà un dels nous ecobarris de Barcelona

ERC pacta amb l’Ajuntament la construcció de dos ecobarris a Barcelona


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