By Contributing Reporter
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – Designed six years ago during former mayor Fernando Haddad’s (PT) administration, the project to redevelop the Anhangabaú Valley, in downtown São Paulo, finally jumped off the printed page into reality.
The works that began this month will end in June of next year. The project will involve an investment of R$80 (US$20) million; the São Paulo City Hall stated on the morning of Monday, June 10th, that it intends to cede maintenance of public space to private initiative.
“The idea is to revamp the Anhangabaú so that it will no longer be a mere transit point but a space of conviviality and permanence, regaining its historical characteristics with the inclusion of water [a fountain],” said Mayor Bruno Covas (PSDB). The renovation of the Anhangabaú Valley is but one of 34 existing projects for the redevelopment of the city center.
Asked if the project might be a measure to remove homeless people living in the Valley, the secretary denied this.
The project provides for the return of water to the Anhangabaú Valley. The water was the region’s main feature because of the river that flowed through it and gave the area its name. The site will include a large fountain that will have 850 water jets to wet the ground. The water jets will be monitored and may be switched off as needed.
The area will include cafés, kiosks, floriculture, a playground, and restrooms. An accessible uniform surface will replace the Portuguese cobblestones.
The project anticipates the enhancement of the environment, maintaining the existing 355 trees and planting 125 new trees, all native species.
Street lighting will be automated through an LED system, with multiple points, as well as under the trees.