Air pollution and traffic jams are a big issue in all major cities – in Barcelona, however, the situation is particularly bad. Relief is to come in the form of the “Urban Mobility Plan” intended to create a greener, cleaner and more pedestrian-friendly city. This new strategy is centred on what is known as “superblocks”, a grid structure on which the individual city districts of the Catalan capital are based.
Within a pre-defined grid, larger carriageways will be created circling the superblocks, while the smaller streets inside will be transformed into pedestrian-friendly public squares. In addition, more than 200 kilometres of bicycle paths will be installed. Residents will be allowed to drive on the streets at maximum speeds of 10 km/h.
This plan is as simple as it is smart and it is intended to help reduce traffic and pollution by up to 21% within the next two years.
One might say that it is in line with Paul Cézanne’s ambition to reduce visual reality to geometric shapes by means of cubism. He would have truly enjoyed this new urban development of the city of Barcelona.