National Architecture Award 2007


Oriol Bohigas

Polemical thinker, influential urbanist and prolific architect, Oriol Bohigas has gone beyond the boundaries of his profession to become an essential referent of Spanish and Catalan culture. Head of the Barcelona School of Architecture from 1977 to 1989, Bohigas has combined professional activity at his studio MBM – with partners Josep Martorell and David Mackay – with his position as director of planning for the Barcelona City Council from 1980 to 1984 and as advisor on culture for the same organism between 1991 and 1994, positions that allowed him to revamp the image of his city on the occasion of the Olympic Games of 1992. As much the policy of opening to the sea of the Catalan capital – with the emblematic project of the Villa Olímpica in the nineties, transformed into a new urban center of Barcelona –, and his policy of refurbishing the historic district with ‘hard’ squares (with little or no greenery) – which brought about much controversy among neighbors – are part of a vital legacy that the Barcelona architect has now seen rewarded with the National Architecture Award, presented by the Ministry of Housing.

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