By: CECÍLIA PIRES
PORTIMÃO CÂMARA wants to improve the riverside area of the city with a project that was approved on Wednesday morning at a special meeting of the council.
The idea is to transform what is today an old and abandoned area into a new, modern and interactive area where people will want to live. The total investment will be 90 million euros.
To go ahead with the project along the Arade River, Portimão Câmara had first to approve a new company comprising the Câmara’s company ExpoArade and a private consortium formed by construction group FDO and the constructor José de Sousa Barra & Filhos.
This group represent the winning proposal competing for the project, “mainly due to the technical teams involved” said Pedro Poucochinho, assistant to the Portimão President, Manuel da Luz.
The public discussion about the company took place on Wednesday (September 26) morning and the promoters are now going to contract independent environmental and financial studies to confirm that the project is feasible.
The project for the new Portimão riverside was evaluated by a special committee of experienced and well known experts, who were involved in the construction of the Lisbon Expo in 1998.
The plan includes a cable car connection of three kilometres between the Portimão Arena and the Portimão Marina, with a stop at the local museum.
The most expensive construction will be a gigantic Aquarium, designed by Peter Chermayeff, who worked on the Lisbon and Osaka Aquariums, the biggest in the world.
This infrastructure, costing five million euros, is considered the most important aspect of the project as the promoters and the evaluation jury considered it was the best way to generate the extra financial income needed to finish the remaining projects planned.
An Insectarium, an interactive museum with insects, is also included in the project and it is said that this facility will be the biggest in the country, with live and dead insects as well as the specific species of butterflies existing in Ria de Alvor.
The project also includes a Planetarium, which is considered the less attractive investment and the only one that may be excluded from the original plan.
A water barrier along the river is another important aspect of the proposal, because it will help to better protect the pedestrian walkways along the Arade River.
Water is also the basic element in the street decoration, with fountains, waterfalls and water volcanoes, specially designed for the children’s playgrounds and other public areas.
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