The protection of industrial heritage will have a greater role in the legislation that, as announced by the Minister of Culture and Sports, José Guirao, this morning in Almeria, will be modified to collect "more clearly" everything related to the protection of these goods. Guirao has revealed his intention to extend the law of Spanish historical heritage during the presentation of the second phase of the project of restoration of the English Cable, the old loading of mineral El Alquife, declared an Asset of Cultural Interest (BIC), in the Almeria capital. "This heritage is very rich in Andalusia and, particularly, in Almeria, which has some of the best examples of the country along with the Basque Country and Asturias," said the minister.
The first phase of rehabilitation works del Cable Inglés, one of the most representative buildings of the city, built between 1902 and 1904 in iron, steel, concrete and wood by the Scottish engineer John Ernest Harrison, began in 2010. The pier, which was erected following the school of Gustave Eiffel, It was in use until 1970 and was declared BIC in 1998. Inaugurated by Alfonso XIII, it is 108 meters long and 16 meters wide and represents a singular monument, real-machine, of the Spanish Industrial Heritage.
Guirao has underlined the special "emphasis" that will be made on the protection of industrial heritage, as will happen with the "new figure of the cultural landscape", which includes the integration of goods with the area that houses them. "It is the landscape that citizens make over the centuries," clarified Guirao.
Along with Carmen Ortiz, president of the Port Authority of Almeria (APA), holder of the English Cable, and the architect Ramón de Torres, responsible for the project, the minister has argued that it is intended to condition the loading dock for citizens to use, which is the "ultimate and main objective". And he has defended that the English Cable fits in a "visionary way" with the old railway station of Almeria, another example of industrial architecture, and with the orography of the city in an "elegant and practical way".
"The values of the loading dock and no one discusses them, are of first national and international level, their rehabilitation is a very good example of the project to recover the industrial heritage for all of Spain," he added.
"This action will not only have local or provincial importance, but it will be a national example of good practices and practices for this type of architecture," Guirao has defended and, before the upcoming municipal elections, has called on political parties to reopen the debate on how to boost its implementation and give it content.
The president of the APA explained that after the first phase, carried out between 2010 and 2012 with 2.7 million euros from 1% Cultural, in which the metallic structure of the loading dock that goes into the sea was assured, the second will have a budget of about three million, of which 2.2 million are in charge of the Ministry of Development following the agreement signed in 2018 by the interministerial commission of Development and Culture for action on assets of special architectural, historical and artistic interest , linked to both ministries.
The rehabilitation project will be put out to bid "immediately" in a month and a half, and the work will be awarded before this summer, with a term of 15 months, so that by the end of 2020 or the beginning of 2021 it will be concluded. Among the first objectives of the project is to link the railway station and the loading dock with a pedestrian promenade.
According to Ramón de Torres, the real estate elements and the wooden pavement will be maintained, leaving open a possible use to the rails, adding the security elements required by regulations and a lighting system in the right feet of the loading dock that will not have "visual impact" " There will also be control elements for access, stairs and an elevator to ensure that anyone can access it. Subsequently, exhibition spaces could be included in the download section, use rooms for various activities, and even a cafeteria.
On the other hand, the Minister of Culture also confirmed the contribution of some 300,000 euros for adaptation works of the Public Library of Almeria, an investment of 200,000 euros for the extension of the Perez Siquier Photography Center and that the Almería Auditorium will be reincorporated into the Platea program of circulation of performing arts developed by the National Institute of Performing Arts and Music (INAEM), which will be followed by the theaters of El Ejido and Vera. The 2019 budgets for Culture and Sports will also allocate 300,000 euros for the Nautical Activities Center of Almeria.