The extension of the historical Botanical Garden of Puerto de la Cruz It is an old project that began to be discussed in 1988, 34 years ago. In 1999, the competition was held to design the new visitor center building, which was practically completed in 2009, when it seemed that the opening was near. Numerous vicissitudes have caused a long delay in the implementation of this complement to the garden created in 1788 by order of King Carlos III. This Thursday, June 2, 2022, the President of the Government of the Canary Islands, Angel Victor Torres (PSOE)visited the building to attend the presentation of the project of the original and groundbreaking exhibition that will endow it with content, and announced a date for the opening of this endless expansion: the summer of 2023.
The Regional Councilor for Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Alicia Vanoostende, valued the importance of this “breakthrough and original” project for theming the visitor center of a garden that already receives some 250,000 people each year. A building that “after so many vicissitudes, finally enters its final stretch.” Around it, in the outside extension areaalso continues and will continue to work so that it arrives in time for next year.
Torres highlighted during the presentation that the visitor center project “has great potential”, highlighted its “excellent design” and the fact that it was developed in a space that “was ahead of time to architectural criteria that came together years later.” In his opinion, «it is to be congratulated and I hope that, during the summer of next year, we can return and that everything we have seen in the presentation video, we can touch, smell and enjoy, because there is no turning back and there is one day less for its inauguration».
The exhibition project is highly innovative and art plays a key role in its design
The Canary Islands Governmentthrough its Ministries of Agriculture and Tourism, allocates €2.89 million to the project of the new exhibition of the visitor center, whose execution period is 11 months. The building has an area of 2,500 square meters, divided into two floors and a basement, where the exhibition hall, the school room with space to be equipped with a practical laboratory and another space for audiovisuals will be located. On the first floor there will be a small shop, a cafeteria and a restaurant. The roof will be used as a viewpoint towards the Valley and the Botanical Garden itself.
The new exhibition entrusted to the public company Tragsatec, flees from conventionalisms and will be a new and risky bet, since it will try to value the garden and transmit values of respect and care for the plant world with a format closer to that of an art gallery. Users of the center will be able to take a tour under the motto The secret life of the plants. The contents have been distributed in autonomous blocks and free to visit as Plants and us, Evolutions, Plant intelligence either Sense and Sensibility. The most innovative aspect of the space is that the exhibition model focuses on pieces of art, specifically sculptures of great visual impact and size that support educational messages.
The mayor of Porto Mark Gonzalezthanked the definitive impulse that has been given in this mandate to the Botanical Garden, «which now finally has a project, financing and, what is more important, with an idea and a clear objective to make it a unique new space». González celebrated that the project offers “artistic work that has a lot to do with the concept of avant-garde city that we defend.”