A six-year refurbishment and modernisation programme means the City Hall building is now something that all Valencia’s citizens can be proud of, says Laura Menéndez…
The City Hall building, a monumental building classified as Bien de Patrimonio Local, an Asset of Local Heritage, serves as the workspace for more than 5,000 municipal employees. Luisa Notario, councillor responsible for Resource Management for the council of Valencia (Gestión de Recursos del Ayuntamiento de Valencia) has assessed the past six years of the refurbishment.
She says, “More than a million euros have been invested in the improvement interventions, modernisation and dignification of the municipal facilities since 2015”. “The aim is to dignify the workspace of thousands of workers, including the government opposition, modernise the facilities and preserve the heritage that the building means for all Valencian citizens.”
Notario explains that the works have focused on conserving and rehabilitating different features of the City Hall, which “in certain cases were in degrading condition” and the improvement of facilities for tourism, as well as bringing back elements of the building that had been forgotten.
“With all these interventions our aim is to value such an emblematic building for Vàlencia and its citizens, restored as the City Hall, whose doors Valencia mayor Joan Ribó opened to showcase its glory both to Valencian citizens and to visitors,” Notario added.
In fact, those areas that allow visitors have become must-sees among Valencia’s tourist attractions, making the City Hall one of the most visited buildings in the city before the pandemic, and Notario hopes that it will be again since reopening last Tuesday. She points out, “the 768,497 people who have visited the building since summer 2015 until 2019 have seen a space that, far from the bunker that it had been for the previous governments, has now become again everyone’s home in this city”.
Notario talks of “the institutional duty” to protect and preserve the architectural heritage as an important part of our cultural and historical memory, drawing attention to the fact that hundreds of people work here on a daily basis: “They deserve to work in the best possible conditions in order to offer citizens a high-quality and efficient public service.”