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WHEN ARCHAEOLOGY MEETS URBANISM: THE EFFECTS OF URBAN PLANNING ON ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES WITHIN URBAN PERIPHERIES UNDER EXPANSION

B. Del Espino Hidalgo, F. J. Garcia Fernandez
Friday 9 November 2018 by Libadmin2018

ABSTRACT

This paper attempts to tackle a problem that intrinsically affects archaeological sites located outside the places where they are generally found and valued: on the one hand, historical centres -where they tend to form part of musealisation projects on an urban scale- and, on the other hand, rural or natural environments -where the sites, generally of a larger scale, constitute a benchmark in themselves in terms of both protection, research and visitor reception. However, our research focuses on those archaeological sites located in the urban periphery and, more specifically, on their treatment by hands of the planning instruments that have designed the growth of the city in recent decades.
The situation of economic growth experienced by Spain, together with other European countries, at the end of the last century and at the beginning of the present one, implied a great expansion of the urban fabric that ended up transforming in a short time the periphery of the cities and affecting the patrimonial elements (both natural and cultural) that were located in their borders, among them, numerous archaeological sites of great relevance. To this must be added the construction of large road infrastructures -roads and high-speed railroads- that accompanied the re-dimensioning of the urban-territorial network.
To address its main objective, the work will follow a methodology based on in situ analysis, bibliography and official planning instruments over a case study located in the interior of Andalusia: the city of Lucena, in the province of Cordoba. This city is a paradigmatic example for analysing the effect of this double dynamic of urban growth and the implementation of large infrastructures, as well as the diversity in the destination and the effects that rapid urban expansion has had on its heritage elements, as it contains in its surroundings remains of different periods and occupations ranging from Prehistory (the Cave of the Angel) to Roman and Late Antiquity.
As results, we can highlight three important sites that have suffered different fate: the Roman kilns of El Tejar, abandoned next to the construction of a highway; the Paleo-Christian and Late Antique basilica of Coracho, dismantled and moved to an environment out of context, surrounded by industrial buildings; and the Jewish necropolis, which forced the displacement of a large ring road, and it has been rehabilitated and opened to the public as a major tourist attraction.

Keywords: archaeological sites, urban expansion, urban planning, urban periphery


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