Integral Plan for the Serra d'en Mena, Barcelona


Integral Plan for the Serra d'en Mena, Barcelona

Mismatches Cultural suitability Vulnerable groups
Policies and regulations Local policies Planning Governance Participatory processes
Urban Design Modelos De Ciudad Urban fabrics Services and infrastructure Environments Quality Liveability Inclusion Equity

Main objectives of the project

In Santa Coloma de Gramenet (Barcelona), near the Besós river, an ambitious rehabilitation project is being carried out in the Serra d'en Mena area. This plan seeks to improve the quality of life of the residents, many of whom are elderly and have limited resources, facing problems of energy poverty and structural deficiencies in their homes. The intervention includes improvements in the energy efficiency of the buildings, complex negotiations between the local administration and the communities of owners, and social projects such as the time bank to strengthen community cohesion.


  • 2007: En proceso


  • Santa Coloma de Gramanet City Council


City: Barcelona
Country/Region: Barcelona, Spain


The area of action is located in Santa Coloma de Gramenet, a municipality in the province of Barcelona close to the Besós river park. The Besós axis is known to be one of the most vulnerable areas in Spain and with the highest concentration of challenges in the metropolitan area of Barcelona. For years, efforts have been intensified in comprehensive neighbourhood rehabilitations in this area, which spans five municipalities and faces various social, natural and urban barriers.

The Serra d'en Mena plan focuses on the rehabilitation of an area that includes 360 dwellings and 26 premises, mostly built between 1968 and 1974 during a period of disorganised urban growth that caused multiple problems. One of the main objectives is to improve the quality of life and health of the residents, many of whom are elderly people with low pensions and suffer from fuel poverty due to inefficient housing.

These neighbourhoods, located on the municipal border with Badalona, have a vulnerable and ageing population, as well as significant structural deficits such as the lack of lifts and accessibility for people with reduced mobility. The location on a mountain aggravates the problems of accessibility on foot and by public transport, in addition to the deficiencies in terms of the healthiness of the dwellings. The plan aims to reverse all of this by improving the urban space, making it accessible, and acting on the housing in the neighbourhoods (some of which are in a critical situation of substandard housing and unhealthy conditions).

To address these challenges, a public intervention has been implemented in several phases, focusing on improving the interior comfort of the buildings and revitalising the identity and urban landscape. This process has required complex management and negotiations with the owners' communities to reach agreements on funding and intervention. In addition, social projects such as the time bank have been launched to involve citizens.

It is remarkable how improvements in the energy efficiency of residential structures not only improve the comfort of residents, but also have a positive impact on the perception of the urban landscape and the quality of life in the urban environment.