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BILBAO URBAN EVOLUTION

Bilbao today is a prime example of urban restructuring, having transitioned from an industrial city to a city of services and culture.

Discover the urban evolution of Bilbao visually and intuitively by taking a historical look at the most relevant projects undertaken in the process.

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In project

Bilbao's transformation has no start and end date, but rather is an ongoing process.

Learn about the projects that will become the new landmarks to consolidate Bilbao as a leading city in urban planning and architecture.

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New constructions

For some time now, Bilbao has been unveiling significant urban and architectural novelties.

This section will provide full detail of recent endeavours which are already a part of the New Bilbao.

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Heritage buildings

Bilbao has taken great pains to preserve its heritage as much as possible, making renovating and preserving Bilbao's historic buildings a key aspect to combining the new architecture with that of inspired artists of yesteryear.

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STARS OF THE ARCHITECTURE IN BILBAO

Modern architecture has raised twenty-first century Bilbao off the ground. As great national and international architects -many of them recipients of the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize- left their mark in the form of modern works of art.The city's commitment to world-class architecture is self-evident and has been successful.

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Abandoibarra

Euskalduna Conference Centre and Concert Hall

Euskalduna Jauregia

Opening in 1999, the Euskalduna Conference Centre was erected on the same spot as the shipyard, Astilleros Euskalduna, built ships for close to a century. Despite being located rather close to the Guggenheim Museum, the Conference Centre is an emblematic building in Bilbao in its own right, with its own distinct identity.

The architecture of the Euskalduna Conference Centre is a reminder of the industrial dynamism of a not so distant past. Thus, architects Federico SORIANO and Dolores PALACIOS were inspired to conceive the project as a two sided ship, reminiscent of a ship’s hull: one side seems to lean out toward the River imitates a ship built of corten iron, allowing a thin layer of rust to form; on the side facing the city, glass, aluminium and stone offer a less aggressive appearance.

Inside, however, one finds the jewel of the Euskalduna, the auditorium. Seating 2,000 people, it was designed by the Catalonian specialist in architectural acoustics Higini ARAU.

auditorio principal y vista lateral

Although initial investment for the Euskalduna Conference Centre was in excess of €80 million, accounts currently show a surplus, and it is no surprise, as recognition for this superb architectural statement has come in the form of esteemed and prestigious awards both nationally and internationally: the Enric Miralles Award at the VI Biennial of Spanish Architecture in 2001; the Apex Award for the World’s Best Congress Centre in 2003; and in 2004, the Best Conference Centre in Spain awarded by the Spanish Federation of Professional Conference Organisers.

Furthermore, the Euskalduna has been enlarged on the adjacent plot of land where the public square is presently located in front of the Abandoibarra Promenade entrance, between the road and the pond on one side. This extension adds another 2,000 sq. m. to the Euskalduna Conference Centre, increasing capacity by accommodating another 400 people.

Ampliacion Euskalduna

Connected to the main building, its open-plan will allow conferences and parallel events, as well as large scale banquets of up to 1,500 guests held simultaneously. The addition is  covered by a glass and steel roof. In the words of the architect, the glints and reflections will give the visitor the impression of “diving into the river.”

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