Nearly 500 architecture students from 8 different schools have discovered this past weekend Les Rondes of Barcelona (the city’s ring roads) in the 2-day Hackathon “Descobrir Les Rondes”. This event aims to bring together the opinions of young architects and urban planners to rethink and redesign this urban infrastructure, which is crucial for the city’s mobility.

Along 40 kilometres, the students of the Master in City and Technology (MaCT) have known first-hand everything that connects or separates this urban ring: the road, the city facilities, the neighbourhoods, the green areas and the surrounding fauna and flora. The main objective and commitment of the students will be to envisage throughout this academic year a better city ring road for the future.

MaCT’s main goal: to rethink another model for Barcelona’s ring roads

Most of the students have stated that the city’s infrastructure should be more oriented towards public transport and make it more friendly to the environment. In this sense, MaCT students have verified the high levels of pollution and acoustic pollution thanks to the Smart Citizen sensor developed by Fab Lab Barcelona. This device has accompanied them throughout the journey to collect data on environmental impact.

Other students who have participated in the Hackathon consider that this model of urban mobility is obsolete and believe that this infrastructure should be demolished to open the city to its metropolitan area. Some even consider that these ring roads act as a barrier or a “wall”. Through the conclusions collected during this weekend, the students will work on the design of new proposals for improvements and global alternatives to the road model for Barcelona.