Death & Life of the bullrings in the current context. The bullring [RE]interpretation as a Cultural Forum in Pontevedra

by Alba Temperán Isorna from Escola Superior Gallaecia (ESG), Portugal
Tutored by: Arq. Gilberto Duarte Carlos

Author comments:

And now, what happens?

This is the essential question that is frequently applied to the buildings that have lost their original function. The diminishing of the bullfight interest, by the youngest generations, and its legal inhibition in specific regions, contributed for the marginal condition of these buildings, formerly so relevant to the city dynamic. Currently, many of these bullrings have been rehabilitated, due to their progressive abandon and degradation; probably caused by a poor maintenance or, simply, due the lack of any activity. This project is developed under the strong possibility of the Pontevedra’s Bullring abdicate its original activity or until the bullfight’s legal interdiction in Galicia; seeking one alternative for those who ideological consider these ceremony as a “NO tradition”, and/or share the concerns of the citizens that stand that a communal building that is only used five days in the whole year, is no longer viable for the public treasury.

So, how to intervene? What is the best urban framework for such architectonic program? What is the most appropriate function?

In the project, a “programmatic separation” is created, between public space and private space - divided into a technical-administrative area, a research, training and formative units as others technical ones created. The structure starts from the smallest unit: the module, created as a specific entity that generate interspaces of relationship and cooperation between different areas and they have in common the center of the square.

Tutor comments:

The present project addresses two fundamental issues of the current architectonic problematic:

1- The stimulation of the multi-cultural appropriation of the urban fabric, reconnecting the cities centres with the dynamic of the public space and their strategic equipments;

2- The reflection about the present human dilemma, situated between the respect for past traditions and the recent perspective towards the development of environmentalist ethic values (namely the animal slaughter as a cultural festival).

The work reveals a deep research on the stated conflict, reflecting a structured study on analogue examples, but also a very accurate urban answer on how to recover large scale obsolete and degraded constructions, to become integrated elements of the whole city system.

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