Lapa receives a new street built by private companies and an urban park
After the expansion and rehabilitation, undertaken by private companies, Rua de Cervantes is now open to the city and will be the entrance to the new urban park that will be created in the Lapa area. In a year, the centre of Porto will have a green lung of 17 thousand square metres. This is what the contract between Porto City Hall and the Mercan group, which is building a new hotel unit, stipulates.
The agreement is already visible: as part of the licensing process for the construction of the hotel, the private group was responsible for the full requalification of the streets of Cervantes and Alves Redol, already open to traffic, as well as the financing of a green space designed by the City Hall for that area of the city, in 2019, which included the creation of an urban front.
Of the total land - which was abandoned - acquired by Mercan, 14,500 square metres were given to the municipality, to be used in the park, which, together with the municipal parcels, will offer the city a green space of 17 thousand square metres. In addition, three thousand square metres have been added, intended for streets that will help with mobility in the central area of the city.
The councillor for Urban Planning considers this as "a virtuous partnership between public interest and private initiative". In the words of Pedro Baganha, "all this could have happened with public investment, if we had expropriated the land, made the streets and the park, but that would have taken much longer and would have involved significant sums of money".
In an interview with Jornal de Notícias, Pedro Baganha noted that the space will have "an open-air water line" and will also have "lakes that will allow for flood control, pedestrian paths and direct access to the metro station".
The second phase, "only with plots of land that belong to the City Hall", will see the expansion of the urban park, a stage that includes the installation of a cafeteria.
The councillor called Lapa "a kind of well-kept secret of Porto". "What was almost the rear will become a centrality, around a park", highlighted Pedro Baganha.