Completion date for Barcelona's Sagrada Familia set for 2026

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Editor : Selin Hayat Hacialioglu
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Barcelona's historic basilica designed by Antoni Gaudi, Sagrada Familia, is set to complete its construction in 2026, ending 144-year saga filled with financial, political, architectural challenges

Completion date for Barcelona's Sagrada Familia set for 2026

The iconic Sagrada Familia will reach its completion in 2026, Esteve Camps, president of the organization responsible for the construction, announced last Wednesday.

This completion date marks 144 years since the laying of the first stone and coincides with the centenary of architect Antoni Gaudi's death.

"We have the funds and materials to finish the main structure, including the central tower that will crown the Sagrada Familia as the tallest building in Barcelona," Camps stated, emphasizing the significance of completing Gaudí's vision.

However, the basilica's completion does not mean the end of construction work. Intricate sculptures and decorative details, and more controversially, a large stairway expected to be part of the main entrance, will continue until 2034.

The stairway's proposed scale – extending over two city blocks and affecting around 1,000 families and businesses – has sparked debates. Camps firmly believe in staying true to Gaudí's original plans.

"We are following Gaudi's plan to the letter," he said. "We are his heirs, and we can't renounce his project. The plan, which was signed by Gaudi and presented to the local authority in 1915, includes the stairway."

Negotiations with Barcelona's mayor Jaume Collboni are ongoing, as the final decision lies with the local authority. Camps expressed uncertainty about the timeline for these discussions: "I don't have a crystal ball to tell me when they will make a decision."

The basilica's construction history has faced numerous challenges, including war, neglect, and financial woes. Most recently, a two-year pause due to the COVID-19 pandemic slowed progress.

Originally reliant on donations, the basilica now sees substantial income from tourism, with nearly 5 million visitors annually contributing to the construction budget through ticket sales.

The Sagrada Familia is often described as a marvel of modern architecture and has elicited varied reactions over the years. Spanish artist Salvador Dali praised its beauty, while English novelist and poet George Orwell criticized it as one of the world's most hideous buildings.

As 2026 approaches, the world awaits the completion of this architectural masterpiece, which has become a symbol of Barcelona's rich culture and history.

Source: Newsroom

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