A look at Valladolid

The city of Valladolid, capital of the Region of Castilla y Leon, is located in the centre of it, 200 kms. northwest of Madrid, and it is a medium-size city. Throughout history, important events took place in the city of Valladolid: the proclamation of Fernando III, ‘El Santo’ as King of Castilla, the wedding of the Catholic Monarchs, Isabel of Castilla and Fernando of Aragon, the death of Christopher Colombus and the birth of Felipe II (1527) King of Spain. During the reigns of Felipe II and Felipe III, the Court was located in Valladolid, because at that time it was the capital of Spain. Some reminders of that time are the National Museum of Polychromatic Sculpture (former Colegio de San Gregorio), and the General Archives of the kingdom of Spain in Simancas. The Museum of Polychromatic Sculpture is one of the most important in the world. The General Archives Building, a castle located 5 kms. from Valladolid, holds a large stock of documents relating to the history of Spain from the Middle Ages to the 19th Century. Valladolid stands out from other Spanish cities, because it has been able to combine the splendour of the past with the necessary progress and development of the present. It is now a modern city with important art and cultural treasures and it has developed cultural, economic and industrial centres.

The University of Valladolid (UVa) was founded in 1241, which makes it the second oldest university in Spain and one of the oldest in Europe. It is an institution closely linked to the city since its birth, influencing its development due to the intense cultural and economic activity it promoted. During the 20th century, especially the University is fully linked to historical and social events. The rectorship of the UVa is located in the palace of Santa Cruz, opened in 1491 is the first exhibition of Renaissance art in Spain. In addition, it currently houses the Museum of the University of Valladolid and the historic library of Santa Cruz, that houses the ancient bibliographic collection of the University of Valladolid, this is, publications prior to 1835. From this library we can highlight as the oldest and most valuable piece The Commentaries to the Apocalypse of San Juan, by Beato of Liébana copied by Oveco in the Monastery of Valcavado, a manuscript on parchment in visigothic script with 87 miniatures in color illustrating the text, dated in the year 970.

On the other hand, Valladolid, founding member of the Spanish Network of Intelligent Cities (RECI - Red Española de Ciudades Inteligentes) and permanent headquarters of the same, works in actions to protect the urban environment and improve the quality of life of citizens, adapting the urban landscape to their service. In this direction, the city has deployed several projects, some of which are:

Rivers of Light Route

Impressive project focused on saving and energy efficiency creating a tourist attraction. An efficient street lighting with LED technology was launched, making the city more attractive at night. This route runs through the main monuments, squares and avenues and the center of the city, standing out the illuminating some historical monuments of the city. This action has also had an impact on energy efficiency and savings in the consumption of the municipality which, in the case of the Plaza Mayor, amount up to 85%. In addition, an application for smartphones has been developed by which users can obtain additional information on the route, audioguide service, augmented reality games and, as a recent novelty, illuminate some specific monuments. You can also do the route following an application that will tell you more information.
With this project Valladolid has managed to get the most out of its public lighting and also increase its energy efficiency. Keep in mind that thanks to this project, Valladolid was rated as the best illuminated city in the world in 2011. The vote was held in Sweden among 180 candidate cities.

Millennium Dome

The Millennium Dome project is a proposal for urban regeneration carried out in the center of the city, next to the Pisuerga river, with the premise of including the greatest number of environmental measures to achieve the maximum sustainability index. Green Building Council Spain (GBC Spain), has granted green certification 5 leaves in recognition of this work. Renewables, electric and sustainable mobility are combined in the space.
The Millennium Dome is a construction very different from everything you can see in the city. It is made with a material that allows it to capture sunlight to light and also natural cooling. In this way the building is completely sustainable, since it generates air conditioning and heating. Interesting building to visit, especially at night changing colors.