Nowadays, with five lines and 68 stations, the Metro of Porto is a large and extremely complex infrastructure.
After winning 1st place in the contest in 1998, for the construction of the light metro line in Oporto, the project began in 1999 and its first inauguration was in 2002 with the opening of the route Matosinhos / Trindade. The project in its whole included 11 buried stations, surface urban stations, rural surface stations, and the insertion of the channel with the surroundings. Among the many tasks that setting up this vast network of 70 kilometers entailed, the architectural definition of the stations was an especially important challenge, both for the difficulty of adapting to the technical requirements and for the dramatic topography of the historic centre of the city.
However, with the evolution of the project something that might have been an obstacle – a closed and unaccommodating system – was transformed into a factor for the redesign of the city. Minor changes in the levels of the streets and adjustments to the correspondence of slopes, pavements, gardens, trees, street furniture, and lighting are some of the aspects of regrading that the surface metro line suggested and which the city needed we could not put off for the future.
The subway network includes two differentiated aspects: on the one hand, the construction of the tracks and the exits of the stations in the streets. Solo de Moura’s project for Bolhão is the application of a single geometric form, adapted to the urban fragment to which it is directly linked. The rebuilt entrance to the Bolhão Metro Station, located in Rua Fernandes Tomás, between Capela das Almas and Porto Gran Plaza shopping centre, improves the access to the station and contributes to the urban revitalization of this part of the historical area of Porto.
The building, covered in white tiles and similar to the exterior of Trindade Station, sought an architectural break with the surrounding space and a reduction in the height of the old building, a fundamental step to give more visibility to the Capela das Almas and respect this monument.
Eduardo Souto de Moura
Coordinator: Adriano Pimenta
José Carlos Mariano, Bernardo Durão, Manuel Pais Vieira, Diogo Crespo, André Campos, Ricardo Tedim, Eduardo Carrilho, Joana Pinho, Nuno Flores, Nuno Lopes, Tiago Coelho, Tiago Figueiredo, Eduardo Pereira, Pedro Chimeno
Structural project: CENOR, Projectos de Engenharia, Lda
Hidraulics: FASE, Estudos e Projectos, S.A
Electrical consultants: Balfour Beatti Company
Mechanical consultants: Balfour Beatti Company
Signals and trains:Bombardier Transportation
Alexandre Barbosa Borges, S.A
Luis Ferreira Alves
Fernandes Tomas Street, 4000-211 Porto, Portugal