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A Park Güell for local residents

11/07/2017 - 18:52

In 2022 it will be a century since the Park Güell opened to the public and the idea is that by the time the centenary arrives the park is once again a place for local residents to feel their own, redressing the trend of it being a tourist icon.

The Park Güell Executive Plan 2018-2022 consists of 179 actions and measures with various goals. Besides reducing the impact of overcrowding and fostering the communal use of spaces, work will be done to improve mobility in the vicinity and a new management model will be promoted. During the five year period for the implementation of the different measures, a total of 24.9 million euros will be invested.

Tourist attraction

The number of visitors to the regulated zone in the park has been cut thanks to limits on capacity. As a result, the rest of the park is overcrowded, with people who either don’t wish to pay admission or who couldn’t get tickets staying in the free access part of the monumental zone.

Given the correlation between the volume of tourists and the iconic pulling power of the Park Güell as a picture postcard spot, the City Council is planning measures to stop the mediatic image. These include reducing or eliminating publicity, increasing the entry cost, campaigns demonstrating the problem and a website which adds social, environmental, architectural and other values to the park.

Winning back the park for residents

The study conducted when designing the plan shows that the increase in visitors to the park has caused the displacement or disappearance of activities by city residents there. During the entire time the park is open, only 1% of activities there correspond to activities for city residents.

The recovery of activities which used to take place in the park, the creation of opening times for use by citizens and the improvement of the website to match the needs of citizens better are some of the measures planned to combat the growing sense of loss among citizens regarding the park.

A digital sensor system will be installed for access to the monumental zone, helping to save queues and streamlining the admission of visitors using the Gaudir Més programme.

Management and mobility, other cornerstones

Apart from investment, the management of the park is also a key point in fitting in local resident, scientific and heritage factors, with a managing entity in the form of a foundation leading to a Park Güell council with its own legal identity.

In terms of mobility, improvements will be made to accessibility, public transport and the vicinity to help reduce congestion in the streets around the park and optimise services.