Luminescent concrete trail named landscaping project of the year

A glowing concrete path designed by Batlle i Roig Arquitectura to wind through former mining territory near Barcelona has been awarded the title of Landscape of the Year 2018.

The Camí de les Guixeres will eventually stretch 1.65 kilometres through the ravaged landscape of a former gypsum mining zone to the north of Barcelona.

To date, 800 metres of the design by Batlle i Roig Arquitectes has been completed – enough to see the project by the Spanish practice named Landscape of the Year 2018. 

The trail is part of the Igualada Green Ring, a network of cycling and walking paths and parks being created on largely disused land skirting the perimeter of Barcelona. 

Luminescent aggregate in the concrete lights the way for hikers and cyclists returning late at night from vantage points along the path – including one that cantilievers over the mountainside. 

Part of the practice's work involved repairing some of the damage done to the landscape by activities at the El Claret and El Pelfort mines, which left behind issues with waterlogging, landsllides and rockfalls. The mines closed decades ago and the site was left abandoned.  

Patches of surviving vegetation, including part of a pine forest, have been bolstered with new planting. The occasional tree planted in the middle of the concrete will grow to offer shade for specially dedicated rest zones that zigzag out from the main path. 

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