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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

New Waterfront for Porto Alegre in Brazil by b720 Fermin Vazquez Arquitectos

June 1st, 2011 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: b720 Fermin Vazquez Arquitectos

The architectural practice b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos, the designers of the Veles e Vents building for the 32nd edition of the America’s Cup, will now tackle the revitalisation of a 2.5-km stretch of waterfront in Porto Alegre (Brazil) in collaboration with Jaime Lerner Arquitetos Associados. The project is aimed at transforming the Cais Mauá dock area – a rundown, disused part of the city – into a business, culture and leisure centre for the 2014 World Cup. The project to revitalise the former dock area is expected to cost approximately E198 million.

Torre Business Park e Hotel

  • Architects: b720 Fermin Vazquez Arquitectos
  • Project: New Waterfront for Porto Alegre
  • Location: Porto Alegre, Río Grande do Sul. Brazil
  • Gross floor area: 247.174 m2 + 123.412 urb.
  • Project phase: 2010-2011
  • Construction phase: 2011-2014

The waterfront of Porto Alegre

  • Client: Porto Cais Mauá do Brasil (SPIM, GIS Trade Center, Proactiva, Iberosport and Contern)
  • Business development: Landside desarrollos y servicios
  • Infrastructures engineering: Contern (Grupo Bertín)
  • Renders: © b720
  • Architects Design: b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitetos & Jaime Lerner Arquitetos Associados

Detalhe Maqueta

  • b720 team: Fermín Vázquez, Peco Mulet, Francesc de Fuentes, Pablo Garrido, Iván Arellano, Zélia Costa, Francisco Marques, Leonardo Novelo, Gemma Ojeda, Giuzy Ottonelli, Nicolás Perfumo, Juan Pablo Porta, Oriol Roig, Laura Rubi, Ángel Gaspar (models) Clement Talbot, Cécile Renaudie,Marcin Giemza
  • Jaime Lerner team: Jaime Lerner, Domingos Bongestabs, Paulo Kawahara, Valéria Bechara, Fernando Canalli, Gianna De Rossi, Fernando Popp, Ariadne Daher, Fabiana Martins, Felipe Guerra, Danielle Schappo, Magali Pahl, Rodrigo Poltosi, Heloisa Strobel, Catherine Narezi

Detalhe Business Park

The intervention, to be carried out in a 181,000-m2 area, will involve building a business park, a hotel, and a shopping centre designed to meet sustainability criteria. Disused warehouses in the dock area (built in 1920) will be transformed into dining and shopping spaces while maintaining the original appearance of the buildings. Respect for the cultural and historical significance of the buildings to be restored is a key aspect of the architectural project, which also stresses responsible use of natural resources.


The government of the state of Rio Grande do Sul has awarded a private concession for the execution and operation of the project to the Porto Cais Mauá do Brasil S.A. Consortium. The consortium is headed by the Spanish company Landside, which brings together the companies SPIM, GIS Trade Center, Proactiva, Iberosport and Contern. Under the concession agreement, the consortium will operate the new businesses for 25 years.


The transformation of Porto Alegre’s waterfront is aimed at re-establishing a direct, human relationship with the Guaíba River, restoring the area’s historical and cultural heritage, and creating a new icon for the Brazilian city. b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos will work in collaboration with the architectural practice Jaime Lerner Arquitetos Associados to carry out this ambitious project, which involves three key zones on the city’s waterfront.


Warehouses. A 1.5-km stretch of restored early 20th-century warehouse buildings.
The warehouses will be restored for public and private use. The pattern formed by the sloping roofs of the buildings extending along more than 1.5 km of waterfront is a powerful image and a feature of the city’s heritage that plays a vital role in defining its identity.


Docks. A new business and leisure zone for one of the 2014 World Cup venues.
New constructions for business and leisure – including a conference centre, offices, business premises, and a hotel comprising several high-rise buildings – will be built in the disused quays area.


Gasômetro. Meticulous restoration of a historical building, with the emphasis on sustainability.
A new shopping centre will be designed to fit in with the surrounding urban environment, with a landscaped roof that will deliver excellent energy performance and reflect the focus on sustainability. The former power plant (known as the Gasômetro) will be transformed into a space for leisure activities.


About b720 Fermín Vázquez Arquitectos
The strategy of the practice (which has offices in Barcelona, Madrid, Porto Alegre and São Paulo) has a clear international focus. Projects currently underway include the emblematic Mercat dels Encants (Barcelona), several stations on Line 9 of Barcelona’s underground system, and the Centro de Alta Resolución de Torremolinos, a specialised medical centre in Malaga. Recently completed projects include the Gran Casino Costa Brava, the Porta Fira Towers in L’Hospitalet de Llobregat (in collaboration with Toyo Ito Architects), and the Lleida-Alguaire Airport.


This awarding consolidates b720’s internationalization strategy, which focuses on exporting values of innovation, sustainability and quality that have always identified b720’s architectural practice.


b720 projects have been featured in exhibitions held at major international museums, such as the MoMA in New York, and in leading architectural magazines (The Architectural Review, A+U, Domus, The Plan, Mark, and Arquitectura Viva, among






Contact b720 Fermin Vazquez Arquitectos and b720 Fermin Vazquez Arquitectos

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