Montjuïc to be transformed into 'iconic' exhibition space by centenary of 1929 Expo

International architecture competition to remodel exhibition halls will open on May 15 

Barcelona mayor Jaume Collboni, business minister Roger Torrent and other officials examine a model of the Montjuïc exhibition space
Barcelona mayor Jaume Collboni, business minister Roger Torrent and other officials examine a model of the Montjuïc exhibition space / Blanca Blay
Lorcan Doherty

Lorcan Doherty | @catalannews | Barcelona

May 6, 2024 04:21 PM

May 6, 2024 08:57 PM

The exhibition halls at Montjuïc are to be remodeled into an "iconic" exhibition space by 2029, in time for the centenary of the 1929 Barcelona International  Expo

The redevelopment will involve an investment of €290 million, it was announced on Monday after the first meeting of a new centary commission made up of representatives from Barcelona City Council, the Catalan government, and Fira de Barcelona, the trade show organization that manages the site. 

Many of Montjuïc's iconic buildings and monuments, including the Magic Fountain, the Olympic Stadium, and the National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC) were constructed for the 1929 exposition, and present-day architects will have the opportunity to make their mark on the site via a new international competition


The architecture competition to remodel the exhibition hall will open on May 15, with the aim of turning Montjuïc into an "urban, modern and iconic" exhibition space. 

The commission plans for the works – across three different zones of the Fira Montjuïc site – will be completed by 2029, coinciding with the centenary of the 1929 Barcelona International Expo. 


"With this transformation and commemoration of 2029, Barcelona again shows vision and ambition to innovate, and also its calling to project itself at an international level," Barcelona mayor Jaume Collboni told media at Fira de Barcelona's Montjuïc venue on Monday.


The renovation of the exhibition space will take place between 2026 and 2029 and have a total budget of €290 million

The architecture competition will be divided into three lots, with companies free to bid for one, two or all three. 

The five-person jury will be chaired by Josep Lluís Mateo. 

The first lot includes the renovation and expansion of the communications hall and the construction of a new multifunctional hall, which will be located on the site of Pavilion 4 and the Palau de Congressos. 

This new facility will have 19,500m2 of exhibition space on two floors and is designed to host fairs and congresses. Although the remodeling of Pavilion 1 is included in this lot, the work to renovate it will not be done before 2029, since it is necessary to have a space for fairs or congresses to take place while renovations are ongoing. 

Another lot will be the design of the new Palau de Congressos, which will be located in the Alfons XIII Pavilion, building a modern facility that preserves protected historical elements.   

The third lot is for the Palau del Vestit, part of Pavilion 8, which will house the Fira Innovation Hub, where companies, research centers and universities will be able to develop projects. 

The Minister for Business and Labor, Roger Torrent, said the centenary must serve "as a springboard for modernization again."