Valencian: Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències
Spanish: Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias
|Owner||Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, S.A. (CACSA)|
|Opened||L'Hemisfèric (1998), Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe (2000), L'Umbracle (2001), L'Oceanogràfic (2003), Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía (2005), Montolivet Bridge (2007), Assut de l'Or Bridge (2008), L'Àgora (2009)|
|Construction cost||1,200 million euros|
|Architect||Santiago Calatrava, Félix Candela (L'Oceanogràfic)|
The City of Arts and Sciences (Valencian: Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències [siw'tad de les 'a?ts i les si'?nsi.es]; Spanish: Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias [?ju'ðað de las 'artes i las '?jen?jas]) is a cultural and architectural complex in the city of Valencia, Spain. It is the most important modern tourist destination in the city of Valencia and one of the 12 Treasures of Spain.
The City of Arts and Sciences is situated at the southeast end of the former riverbed of the river Turia, which was drained and rerouted after a catastrophic flood in 1957. The old riverbed was turned into a picturesque sunken park.
Designed by Santiago Calatrava and Félix Candela, the project began the first stages of construction in July 1996, and was inaugurated on 16 April 1998 with the opening of L'Hemisfèric. The last major component of the City of Arts and Sciences, Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía, was inaugurated on 9 October 2005, Valencian Community Day. The most recent building in the complex, L'Àgora, was opened in 2009.
Originally budgeted at EUR300 million in 1991 for three structures, it has expanded about three times the initial expected cost.
The complex is made up of the following buildings and structures, presented in the order of their inauguration:
In 1989, the president of the Valencian Autonomous Government, Joan Lerma, after a visit to the new Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie in Paris, and through the general director of planning and studies of the Presidency of the Generalitat Valenciana, Dr. José María Bernabé, officially commissioned the scientist Dr. Antonio Ten Ros to draft a first proposal for a City of Science and Technology for Valencia.
Dr. Ten Ros drew up a first draft, entitled "Vilanova, A City of Science for Valencia", which was officially presented to the Generalitat in May 1989. After that, he was formally commissioned in 1990 to direct the creation of a general draft amounting to 92,650,000 pesetas (556,000 euros), to be managed by the University of Valencia. Antonio Ten Ros assembled a team of 56 scientists, museologists and designers including Professor José María López Piñero as responsible for the space "A walk through history". Ten Ros presented the draft in 32 volumes to President Lerma in the Palace of the Generalitat on 21 December 1991.
The "City of Science and Communications" was the name that the autonomous government gave to the initiative, and plans included a 370m high communications tower, which would have been the third highest one in the world at that time; a planetarium; and a museum of science. The total price of the works was estimated to be about 25,000 million pesetas.
In May 1991, the council approved the transfer of lands. Four months later the project plan with three structures (communications tower, planetarium, and a science museum) was presented, designed by Santiago Calatrava.
The team that had designed the museum did not see eye to eye with the form in which Santiago Calatrava conceived the building, and a couple of changes were made. Preliminary site work began by the end of 1994.
The project was not without controversy. The Conservative Popular Party saw in the City of Science a "work of the pharaohs" that would serve only to swell the ego of the Socialists, who were the driving forces behind the initiative.
In 1995, the Popular Party won against the Socialists. However, several successive Popular Party governments continued and expanded the complex far beyond the original Socialist project at an enormous cost, heavily indebting the city.
After a change of government in 1996, the planned telecommunication tower was cancelled and replaced by an opera house, which was more expensive, and architect Félix Candela was added to design an oceanographic park, all of which led to underspecified increases in the project budget and to updating the name to City of Arts and Sciences. In July 1996, the original Valencia, Ciencia y Comunicaciones was officially changed to Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, S.A. (CACSA). Construction on the City of Arts and Sciences under CACSA began July 1996. When construction started in 1997 on the Palau de les Arts, it was built with the same foundation and the same contract that had been planned for the cancelled communications tower.
The revised plan (by Calatrava) exhibited a strong longitudinal axis that defined the backbone tying together all the structures of the complex. It bisected the Opera House, Montolivet Bridge, L'Hemisferic, and extended through the Assut de L'Or Bridge and L'Agora (commissioned later in 2005) to L'Oceanografic (designed by Candela). Parallel to the axis were placed the science museum, L'Umbracle, raised promenades and reflecting pools.
As the site is close to the sea, and Valencia is so dry, I decided to make water a major element for the whole site using it as a mirror for the architecture. --Santiago Calatrava
Another unifying element was the use of the city's traditional heritage, viz., the use of ceramic mosaic tiles known as "trencadis", which was widely used as the exterior layer over the concrete surfaces of many of the buildings/structures and elements of the promenade throughout the complex.
Construction continued on the site until the last structure, L'Agora, was completed in 2009. The total cost of the project came in at 1,200 million euros.
In April 1998, the complex opened its doors to the public with L'Hemisfèric. Eleven months later, the President of Valencia, Eduardo Zaplana, inaugurated the Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe, although the museum was not yet finished. The museum was opened to the public twenty months later. On 12 December 2002 was the opening of L'Oceanogràfic, the largest aquarium built in Europe. Queen Sofía, on 8 October 2005, inaugurated the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía, which became the opera house of Valencia.
Santiago Calatrava was born in Valencia, Spain, on 28 July 1951. He is an architect and engineer also known for his skills in painting and sculpting. He attended the Art Academy in Valencia in the mid-1960s; then he earned a degree in architecture and a postgraduate course in city planning at the Escuela Tecnica Superior de Arquitectura, studied civil engineering at the Federal Polytechnic University of Zurich, and participated in academic research investigating the foldability of space frames.
Calatrava's architecture aims to unite structure and movement. Early in his career, Calatrava designed Stadelhofen Station in Zurich. He was recognized for his achievement in creating poetics of movement and integrating public transportation in a natural setting and urban context. Another theme in his work was moving contraptions in his buildings; for example, his dome for the Reichstag Conversion Competition in Berlin opens and closes like a flower, and the Planetarium in the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia opens and closes like eyelids.
Félix Candela was born on 27 January 1910 in Madrid, Spain, and died on 7 December 1997. His architectural designs are composed of reinforced concrete structures distinguished by thin, curved shells. His popularity sprung from his design, in collaboration with Jorge Gonzales Reyna, of the Cosmic Rays Pavilion (1951) in Mexico. He used his signature design of the reinforced concrete roof that varies in thickness from only 5/8 inch to 2 inches. He also built the church of La Virgin Milagrosa in Mexico City and the church of San Vicente de Paul. His designs consisted of warped-shell industrial buildings, thin-shell centenary, and barrel-vaulted factories and warehouses. Candela was also a teacher at Harvard University and the University of Illinois. Felix Candela designed the underwater city L'Oceanogràfic in the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia, reminiscent of Antoni Gaudí's work in Barcelona.
Parts of the musical number "Style" from the 2007 Indian film Sivaji were shot at the City of Arts and Sciences. Portions of the area were featured in the 2013 racing game Gran Turismo 6 as a photo location. Exterior scenes of the futuristic city in the 2015 film Tomorrowland were filmed around the complex. In 2016 (broadcast in 2017) it was used as a filming location for the British science-fiction television programme Doctor Who, appearing in the second episode of the tenth series, "Smile". The location was used as the headquarters of the company DELOS in the third season of the HBO series Westworld.
Various exterior shots of the complex were used to depict a conceptual 2039 New York World's Fair for the season finale of Cosmos: Possible Worlds on National Geographic. Architectural elements from the site were used as a green screen backdrop for the futuristic 2720 city in the 2020 film Bill & Ted Face the Music It's also used as the set of the 2020 television adaptation of Brave New World. Parts of the shooting for the 2021 TV series Intergalactic is also done in the City of Arts and Sciences.
In 2019 it was reported that the economic impact of the complex is EUR113 million a year and generates 3509 jobs.
...in 1991 this work was commissioned to Santiago Calatrava, initially composed of three buildings: the Planetarium, the Science Museum and the Telecommunications Tower. This complex of three buildings had an expected cost of 300 million euros. In 1996, the regional government, in addition to changing the Telecommunications Tower for an Opera [House]..., expanded the project with new works and buildings... which represent an additional cost of 800 million euros.
In July 1996, Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, S.A. was founded, following a change in company name from Vacico (Valencia, Ciencia y Comunicaciones), a trading company run by the Government of Valencia.