"Walking Tour II: In the Heart of Abando" Bilbao Things to Do Tip by DanielF

Bilbao Things to Do: 363 reviews and 898 photos

by DanielF
  • Walking Tour II: In the Heart of Abando - Bilbao
  • Saint Vincent Square - Bilbao
      Saint Vincent Square
    by DanielF
  • Walking Tour II: In the Heart of Abando - Bilbao
  • Walking Tour II: In the Heart of Abando - Bilbao
  • Buenos Aires Street - Bilbao
      Buenos Aires Street
    by DanielF

When the available land on the right bank of the Nervión was over, the city needed to expand on the opposite bank, in the lands of the rival town of Abando. A large urban plan, based upon de ideas developed by Ildefons Cerdà in the Eixample of Barcelona, was designed by Severino de Achúcarro, author of some of the most noteworthy buildings in the city, and the engineers Pablo de Alzola and Ernesto de Hoffmeyer.

As in Barcelona, the Bilbao Ensanche is characterized by long straight streets disposed in a grid patternformed by large truncated-square blocks. In the centre, they placed a large eliptical square (Plaza Federico Moyúa), crossed by the main and largest avenue in the city: the Gran Vía López de Haro. Other three smaller avenues (Ercilla, Elcano and Recalde) cross at the square and traverse the district diagonally.

Since the start, the prosperous bourgeoisie escaped the congested Casco Viejo and moved to the Ensanche, where soon urban palaces and imposing bank buildings appeared.

The Ensanche is an area of great architectural value, where all the tendencies of the 20th are represented with pieces of extreme interest: neo-basquist regionalism, eclecticism, rationalism, historicism, art deco, expressionism and many others are the styles that you can see walking through the long streets of Abando.

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  • Updated Dec 4, 2007
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