Guided Tour 2: Architects lead the walk through the transformations on Rio’s City Center

Photo: CAU/RJ

On Saturday, July 20, the history of architecture of Rio’s City Centre was, once again, revisited. On the second guided tour provided by architects specialized in history and patrimony, who were invited by the project ArqGuia, 87 students, tour guides, inhabitants and enthusiasts of Rio de Janeiro have had the chance to rediscover and resignify the streets and the buildings of the Cinelândia area.

The specialists took the participants on a walk around iconic constructions that represent decades of knowledge on Brazilian architecture, highlighting the information about the milestones of each period.

The initiative is organized by ArqGuia and UIA 2020 RIO’s Committee, with the support of TV Globo, the Institute of Architects of Brazil (IAB) and Rio de Janeiro’s Architeture and Urbanism Council (CAU/RJ). It is part of the preparations for UIA 2020 RIO, the 27th World Congress of Architects, happening in the city next year.

The participants walked around the Center of Rio, an itinerary that included Cinelândia Square, the Municipal Theater, Pedro Ernesto Palace, the National Library, the National Museum of Fine Arts, Marquês do Herval Building, Caixa Cultural, Central Avenue Building, Carioca Square, and the St. Anthony’s Convent and Church.

Photo: CAU/RJ

- ArqGuia gives people the opportunity to get to know the background of what was built. Through guided tours, the city’s inhabitants are able to understand the inspirations, motivations and intentions of the architect over the urban space. Nothing was done by accident – explains the architect Lucas Franco, responsible for the project and for the homonymous online guide Arq.Guia.

He emphasizes that, many times, Rio’s Centre has been through significant changes.

- One of the main goals of ArqGuia is to talk about the transformation of urban space. That way, we can remember the building works of the mayor Pereira Passos, who wanted to “sanitize” the Center of Rio. Between 1940 and 1970, there were changes as a result of the construction of skyscrapers in the area. In 2016, there was a big reform during the administration of Eduardo Paes. The changes happen so fast that they rarely are the result of an extensive debate with social participation – Lucas argues.

Besides Franco, the tour had the orientation of the invited architects Niuxa Drago, Priscilla Peixoto and Noemia Barradas. Journalist and associate of RIO.ETC, Tiago Petrik, was responsible for a photography workshop, in which he helped people to take nice pictures of the Brazilian patrimony using cellphones.

The “ArqGuia Rio – Knowing the city’s architecture” project provides guided tours at urban spaces and buildings that are extremely interesting in terms of Rio’s architecture and urbanism. Rio is the first city to be declared by UNESCO as a World Capital of Architecture, during the organization for the 27th World Congress of Architects UIA 2020 RIO.



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