Metropol Parasol (Seville, Spain)
Designed by the German architect Jürgen Mayer-Hermann, who won a competition for ideas to redevelop the site, the Parasol overcame construction difficulties that saw it more than double in cost to €100m after six years of work and a redesign.
The Metropol Parasol has revitalised the Plaza de la Encarnación, which was for years reduced to being used as a parking lot and gained a reputation as a dead zone between the city’s popular tourist attractions.
The structure consists of six large mushroom-shaped parasols which provide shade from the city’s often hot climate and stands some 90 feet high and nearly 500 feet long. To avoid disturbing the Roman Ruins in the area, supporting columns could only be placed in certain locations, requiring an unusual design.
Visitors, who may be interested to know that the structure is held together by (super-strong) glue, can enjoy viewing platforms perched atop the organic forms, which also shelter restaurants, shops and an archaeological museum. The parasol is also used for public events.