The first renderings have been presented to enable us to begin to imagine what Madrid's "Metropolitan Forest" will look like, the large green infrastructure that will surround the Spanish capital over a 75 km perimeter. The winners of the five areas that will make up the park, announced a few months ago, have presented their projects. We can now see the first images of what it will look like when it is completed, in about 10 years' time.
The project, officially launched by the Madrid City Council in summer 2020 with an international Call for proposals, will create Europe's largest urban park. A true forest, lush and luxuriant, made up of 450 thousand new trees and hundreds of thousands of plants, flowers and wild herbs.
The call for proposals for the Metropolitan Forest is worth € 3.6 million and is divided into five areas, according to criteria of geographical continuity. A total of 33 proposals were submitted to the ideas competition. The five winners, who each receive a prize of € 200,000 from the “Foro de Empresas por Madrid”, stand out for their overall vision, their integration with the landscape and their understanding of the environment, among other characteristics. The jury also evaluated, for each of the five areas in the competition, the ideas that focus on the environmental criteria of biodiversity, sustainable water management and the promotion of environmental values.
For the first images, and more details on the project, please visit this page of the “Foro de Empresas por Madrid” website: https://www.forodeempresaspormadrid.es/proyectos-foro/proyectos-en-curso/bosque-metropolitano/
Madrid already has an abundance of green spaces, both natural and engineered. In fact, 44.85% of the city's surface area is covered by green spaces and public parks. The Metropolitan Forest will contribute to the rebalancing of the city, the reduction of CO2 emissions, the fight against climate change, the ecological and landscape restoration of degraded areas and an increase in the number of pedestrian and cycle paths, as well as bringing concrete benefits to the health of the population.
It will be built from green areas classified by urban planning, both executed and pending, in order to form a green corridor that will run for large sections along the borders of the Iberian Administration.
Last November, the first trees were planted in the forest, which will be made up of indigenous species representative of the Iberian natural heritage and adapted to local conditions and the expected climate change scenarios, such as holm oaks, poplars, wild olive trees, strawberry trees, maritime pines, carob trees, willows, ash trees, elms and other tree species, accompanied by broom, hawthorn, oleander, rosemary, thyme, juniper, cistus and other shrubs and bushes.
The forests will be accompanied by paths for walking and sports, and living areas. Additional equipped areas will also be created, which will contribute to their use and the leisure and entertainment of visitors.
In order to ensure their geographical continuity, "eco-links " (green bridges) are also planned, which will enable them to harmonise with the main transport infrastructure and contribute to the ecological and functional continuity of both the corridor and its various sub-areas.