New York Times shines spotlight on Portugal’s calçada stone

USA’s prestigious New York Times newspaper has written about Portugal’s iconic ‘calçada’ pavements in a lengthy article published online on March 30.

The piece highlights the unique qualities of the limestone surfaces which have become so synonymous with Portugal’s culture and decorative style.

As writer Kathleen Beckett points out, “in Lisbon the pavements are considered works of art”.

“Patterned pavements are as much a part of Portugal’s heritage as an after-dinner glass of port,” writes Beckett.

The article mentions the stone paving school established by Lisbon council in 1986 which has already trained 224 ‘calceteiros’, or pavers, to “maintain the limestone surfaces in the city as well as create new ones”.

The school has also “codified the technique and archived its history”, as stone paving had been a skill handed down from generation to generation, “taught through oral tradition”.

“Nothing was written down,” said Ana Baptista who handles public relations for the school. “We want to preserve these skills.”

Read the full article (here)

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