Stones of the globe to the Sagrada Familia, come to Lleida
In recent weeks, the controversy seems to envelop everything related to the Sagrada Família. In the statements of Councilman Heritage Hall, Daniel Mòdol, calling the temple “Easter cake”, he added a few days after the request by the Consistory of a building permit, and now the complaint filed by the association neighbors for the occupation of public space. But this controversy does not seem to affect the pace of works in the basilica, which continues outside the debates aroused and with a view to finish the work in 2026. To meet this objective self-imposed those responsible for the temple, in a Les Borges Blanques field tons and tons of stones accumulate. There, nearly 150 kilometers of Eixample, begins the process of construction of the Sagrada Família.
In this tank, dubbed la Campa, large blocks come-from a maximum of 25 tonnes which, after being cut and assembled into a sort of “Mecano”, will rise in the six towers that crowned the basilica and already begin to blunt.
These pinnacles are entirely built with stone. To ensure the availability of material, in this deposit of 12,000 square meters 7,000 cubic meters of stone quarries arrival of 20 different spread around the world accumulate. For the six central towers will be needed around 13,000 cubic meters gross of this material, which then must pass the appropriate quality controls are cut and numbered, on a ship also attached in Les Borges Blanques, to indicate which tower are intended.
The diversity of materials with which the Sagrada Familia and the fact that it is no longer possible to have stone from the quarry of Montjuïc, with which it was built almost all the Eixample and the temple is built, and which was closed ago 50 years, obliged to use this diversity of quarries.
“The stone of Montjuïc has characteristics and chromaticism that we have not found anywhere else in the world,” explains Carles Farràs, head of production of the temple. Hence most gritty now they used come from the UK, France and Cantabria. They are transported in large trucks to reach Lleida and there are cut.
The different chromaticism of these -reds, yellow and Greens stones allow pixelate the towers and simulate the only color that have the Montjuïc. However, these rocks are still used Barcelona and La Campa tonnes from demolition of buildings Eixample accumulate. These stones will be used to finalize the cloister surrounding the basilica and rehabilitations of old facades. “We still call when there is a takedown for us to take the material and store it here until we need,” says the production manager.
The pieces of different colors will be pixel by a computer system that takes into account criteria such as the proportion of each stone, typology and structural criteria. All this to get the closest possible effect to the rock of Montjuïc.
In the Campa granite from Galicia, porphyry Iran are also stored, with which the edges of the tower of Jesus to symbolize the blood of Christ, and blue granite Bahia Brazil, which will go to the tower of the Mare de Deu will be built and will represent his mantle. These are the main materials that the six central towers will be built.
In all these years, technicians have visited countless Sagrada Família quarries. “Depending on the area where are the quarries is common during the winter months, can not supply material. And the works can not stop at the Sagrada Família “Farràs explains. They have also found that depleted quarries and then have to resort to other places.
The height of the six towers, Jesus -the reach 172 meters- and the absence of concrete requires a comprehensive quality controls and laboratory tests -in full seven- starting at the same quarry and end in the Eixample, one once the parts reach the work. Many of the flaws are detected when the stone is transferred to the ship, where it is cut with huge machines that are running 24 hours a day. According Farràs explains, only 30% of the material coming from quarries used. Discards by incidents and irregularities are common and quality controls must ensure the durability of parts, which must be centuries. Therefore, according to the spokespeople, only the highest quality stone is used. The rock blocks are carved with diamond wire, a complicated job and that takes time. Only half a meter carving one of these gigantic blocks of rock can take between an hour and an hour and a half, depending on the hardness of the stone. Once cut is renumbered to ensure traceability of parts.
The Sagrada Família is constructed of a skyscraper own techniques, even though its structure is completely covered in stone. In the case of the towers it has devised a system through stone panels that incorporate inside stainless steel turnbuckles compress. They are shaped like “M” and “W”. These large blocks are built in the grounds of La Galera, in Bages, once the stones move from Les Borges Blanques.
In total 850 panels will be built to boost the six central towers, representing more than 12,000 pieces of stones. These large panels are fit together like a “Mecano” and in the temple and rise with large cranes to the place they should occupy. This system, as explained in the last press conference the head of the works, architect Jordi Fauli, can safely withstand horizontal actions like wind or possible earthquakes. Stones must endure centuries.