Guallart Architects


Vinaròs, Castellón.Spain 2001

In 1967 Benoit Mandelbrot published his famous text ‘How Long Is the Coast of Britain’ in the magazine Science. This text and his subsequent book The Fractal Geometry of Nature laid the basis for a whole new line of research into the geometry of irregular systems.

The coast, the line that delimits the land from the sea, is one of these irregular systems.

Cities have always manipulated their coastlines, winning land from the sea, through the construction of ports and sea walls, creating plots of great economic value in sites of great strategic value.

Construction in such a dynamic space, where the dimensions and forms are amorphous (immense breakwaters and horizontal platforms) calls for structures and patterns that will order its functioning and its growth over the course of time.

More land, more economy.

Vinaroz is a town of 30,000 people in the Comunidad Valenciana, whose port is being remodelled by the regional government. The industrial and commercial fishing zone will be enlarged and relocated near the south sea wall and a new leisure port will be built, linked to the extension of the seafront promenade. This will serve to develop a focus of urban attraction on the territorial scale, sited alongside the geographical origin of the town.

The project for the port is articulated around the implantation of a longitudinal pattern based on the different systems of movement (ships, lorries, cars and pedestrians) that structures the vast site, permitting the introduction of specific functions housed in lightweight constructions (industry, fish market, nautical services and leisure), and generates an order open to a multiplicity of transformations in the course of time, inherent in a place of dynamic interchange.


Project: 2001
Client: Generalitat Valenciana.
Conselleria d'Obres Publiques. Direcció General de Ports
Site: Vinaroz (Castellon). Spain
Design Team: Vicente Guallart, Jordi Mansilla
Assitant: Pilar Gasque,. Barbara Oelbrand
Models: Christine Bleicher, Adria Maynes
Photographs Model: Giovanni Zanzi