‘Time Capsule’ will remain closed until 2159

The Barcelona ‘Time Capsule’, a project developed as part of the Cerdà Year, will remain sealed until the year 2159. This date marks the 300th anniversary of the approval of Ildefons Cerdà’s Plan for the Reform and Development of Barcelona, when the Eixample neighbourhood was designed


September 16, 2010 11:16 PM

Barcelona (ACN).- The last project of the Cerdà Year is a time capsule that was developed to collect stories and visions from Barcelona inhabitants of now for inhabitants of the future. The time capsule will remain sealed in CosmoCaixa’s Plaça de la Ciència. Apart from the 3,000 messages from Barcelona residents, the capsule contains the main publications from the Cerdà Year, with interviews, exposition catalogs, schoolwork and the plans of Ildefons Cerdà. The digital contents of the box will remain enclosed for 150 years so that people from that time may explore them.

The ‘Time Capsule’ will be opened 150 years from its creation in the year 2159. This date was chosen to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the approval of Ildefons Cerdà’s Plan for the Reform and Development of Barcelona. All of the messages and documentation from the Cerdà Year are preserved on the website www.barcelona2159.org. The information is stored on a hard drive, CDs and USB memory sticks. The initiative’s objective is to preserve the thoughts and happenings of the Barcelona of today and see what it will be like in 150 years.

There are three motives for the decision to install the ‘Time Capsule’ in the CosmoCaixa. The first motive is its location, next to Collserola mountain, situating the Barcelona of today and the Barcelona of the future on a type of ‘psychological wall’. Secondly, for the type of public the centre receives, some 100,000 young people each year. Lastly, because the project has a technological challenge that is to make a living and didactic time capsule to explain materials, technology and science.

‘The city air will make us free’

The ‘Time Capsule’ is comprised of a base and a container covered with stainless steel. Both pieces are marked with a coded engraving that pays homage to the city. The engraving states ‘The city air will make us free’. A mechanism inside the capsule will act as a timer, moving once a year until the year 2159 when the container will break away from the base and the engraving may be read. The movement will be repeated 150 times, representing the number of years that the ‘Time Capsule’ will be waiting for the Barcelona of the future.