Wrapping the marsh. Landscape itinerary around the north estuary of the Odiel river.

The project stems from the consideration that the citizens of the 21st century no longer live in confined places - even if they live in them - with hardly any relationship with the neighbors of other nearby municipalities. The concept of Territory, as a space where life takes place - work, residence, leisure, social relations - calls for the establishment of links between the different parts that make up our physical reality, beyond the creation of new administrative entities.

This is a great green infrastructure of a supra-municipal nature, 30 km long, which connects the towns of Huelva, Aljaraque and Gibraleón - with a total of 180,000 inhabitants - and brings them closer to the great environmental, scenic, botanical, zoological and heritage wealth that encompasses the vast protected natural area of Marismas del Odiel that surrounds them (7,200 hectares). The main objectives are non-motorized accessibility between the three towns mentioned above by means of a multimodal road along the edge of the northern estuary of the Odiel; and the requalification of the degraded urban-rural edges by means of environmental regeneration and improvement of their landscape image.

The intervention is voluntarily contaminated by other disciplines beyond the purely architectural, already present in the work territory. And so, in addition to architecture, it is also engineering (bridges), hydraulics (floodgates and sheet piling), infrastructure (roads and breakwaters), landscape (viewpoints), heritage (Tharsis wharf-loader), ethnography (tidal mills and salt marshes), botany (25,000 new specimens planted), biology (sheets of water for bird roosting), sport (piers for canoeing and fishing) and even public health (promotion of non-motorized mobility).

The route runs along disused railways, livestock trails, marsh edges, abandoned salt marshes, and the occasional urban section. Just as any text needs punctuation marks to be legible, the itinerary is punctuated by a series of elements (pergolas, bridges, jetties, rest areas, viewpoints or rooms) which, as strategically located architectural-sculptural proposals of territorial acupuncture, help to mark out the route, mark the rhythms and make the territory legible.

The project continually swings between the large scale of the territory in which it operates and of the intervention itself (XXL) and the small scale of the architectural pieces built (XXS), with hardly any of the usual scale or average dimensions in architecture. Likewise, the meagre budget managed for an intervention of this caliber has forced us to sharpen our ingenuity and concentrate our efforts on very specific points of the extensive route.

To define its morphology and choose the materials used to define it, the strategy was to remember the rich natural and cultural heritage of the territory and maintain its essence: the riverside, mining and railway character, and its conception as a great scenic viewpoint from the rural land. All of this is expressed in the use of curved, natural, sinuous and organic shapes, the same shapes that the intertidal nature shows us. In terms of materials, we have resorted to those used historically in this territory: breakwaters, mud walls, floodgates, sheet piles, eucalyptus poles, untreated wood that blends in with the environment, and water crossings reinterpreted with honeycomb panels. The traces of the rich mining-railway past are reflected in the use of steel and perforated sheet metal used to build bridges, pergolas and belvederes, hybrids of architecture and sculptures stranded in the territory.

In short, starting from an infrastructure and communications project, we propose to give added value to the intervention, until it becomes an equipped park. In short, it is a question of taking advantage of a 30 km. loop operation to reflect on the future and the development of the territory it envelops.


López Rivera, F. Javier
Pico Valimaña, Ramón

Concurso: Moreno, Julia
Anteproyecto: Merino, Marcos
Concurso, Proyecto Ejecución y Renders: Cortés Sánchez, Luis M.
Cálculo Estructural Puente y Pérgolas: Duarte Asociados
Consultoría medioambiental: Camacho-Typma, Javier

Mediciones, Estudio y Coordinación en Seguridad y Salud: Rivas Pérez, Antonio

Control de Calidad

Consejería de Fomento, Articulación del Territorio y Vivienda. Junta de Andalucía

Building Company
UTE Odiel Grulop-Pinus

Talleres Garrucho (Puente, Pérgolas y Mirador) / Carmo Wood (Pasarelas de Madera) / Pavimentos Matos (Mezclas bituminosas) / Ecoasfalt (Doble Tratamiento Superficial) / Prefabricados San Francisco (Placas Alveolares) / Prefabricados San Blas (Embocaduras de hormigón) / Iripo (Maderas) /
Impregna (Señalización y Talanqueras) / Kuma (Mobiliario, Barreras y Graderíos de hormigón arquitectónico)


Estudio ACTA