Parc de l'Espanya Industrial
Parc de l'Espanya Industrial is a fine example of urban renewal. It is also a tribute to the local community, who fought to keep the space. The company that owned the land wanted to build houses, but the city council refused permission.
Originally the site of a massive textile factory. At the height of production in the 1880s it employed 2500 people and was called locally the 'Vapor Nou' or New Steam. (The other big textile factory in Sants was called 'Vapor Vell' or Old Steam.)
The factory finally closed in 1969 and the 'Parc de l'Espanya Industrial' was completed in 1985. It is named after the company that owned the factory. The 'la España Industrial, Sociedad Anónima Fabril y Mercantil' was the first cotton company in the whole of Spain.
The park was designed by the Basque architect Luis Peña Ganchegui. There are nine lighthouses by the massive Sants railway station and a green space to the south. In the centre is a small boating lake. The water is guarded by statues built for the 1929 Expo, brought 'out of retirement'. Neptune by Manuel Fuxà. Venus by José Pérez Peresejo and the odd Oxen of Plenty by Antoni Alsina. The most fun part of the park is the giant metal dragon that protects the entrance. Designed by fellow Basque sculptor Andrés Nagel, it was added a couple of years after the initial opening.
There was one final addition made for the 1992 Olympic Games. The dull, boxlike sports centre 'Espanya Industrial' hosted all the weightlifiting events at the 25th Olympiad.
It is a nice spot to hang out, especially if you have time to kill before catching a train. Keep an eye on your belongings though. During the Sants Festival (end of August) there is a funfair and live music every night.
What Is There?
Boating Lake / Sports Centre
Dragon Slide / Seating Areas
Basketball Court / Table Tennis
Also Known For
It is a popular spot with 'urban' sports people.
Skateboarding / Longboarding / BMX
Mainly on the placa in front of the station
next to Barcelon's main train station Sants
Metro Lines 3 (green) & 5 (blue)
Bus 32, 78 & 109
30 minute walk from Placa Catalunya