Plan for conservation and promotion of fortifications of Pamplona
Dating of the building: 16th - 18th century.
Applicant: José-Vicente Valdenebro Garía, Pamplona City Council.
Reason for the award :
The Jury was impressed by the restoration of the fortifications of Pamplona, one of the largest and best-preserved European complexes, with its walls, bastions, and citadel.
The fortifications, one of the emblematic monuments of the city, with transcendent influence on its urban development and the city´s morphology, have ceased to be a defensive wall to become a meeting place.
The fortified complex of Pamplona, built between the 16th and 18th centuries, is one of the best-preserved bastion enclosures in all of Europe. Its decline started in the 19th century due to its inefficiency in the face of artillery advances and the significant demographic growth requiring an expansion of the urban zone. Pamplona celebrated the demolition of part of its walls between 1915 and 1921 as a great event.
Since 2006, the City Council has promoted an essential action plan for the entire fortified area. The proposal has three main lines of action. The first aimed at carrying out specific activities for the conservation and restoration of material assets. The second, to carry out functional improvements to the environment in areas such as housing, facilities, public spaces, and mobility-accessibility. And the third focused on the revitalization and promotion of the walled enclosure itself to disseminate its historical and architectural values.
After carrying out action, in 2011, the restoration of the Fortín de San Bartolomé was completed, erected at the end of the 18th century as the last element of the fortification, and reopened its doors as the Interpretative Centre of the Fortifications of Pamplona. It is a reception point for citizens and visitors where the evolution of the walls of Pamplona, and the progress and improvement of attack techniques and techniques adapted to different ages and abilities, are explained in a didactic, participatory way. It is, therefore, a place where the visitor is brought closer to the style of life and traditions inside the fortified square and where the walls of Pamplona are connected with other Spanish, European and American fortifications. From this centre, it is possible to enjoy a pleasant, fully accessible walk of more than five kilometres along the edge of the wall. This tour has been complemented with interpretive panels and tables equipped with infographics explaining the evolution of the walled complex and information in various languages, and a Braille reading system. The wall of Pamplona, once a barrier due to its defensive function, is currently a place of recreation and an element for integrating Pamplona’s cultural and environmental heritage.
Nowadays, the walls of Pamplona, far from being a hindrance for citizens, have managed to incorporate modern facilities and have become a space for leisure and recreation for its inhabitants, integrating the different neighbourhoods of the city.