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Quito Metro Line 1 Consortium renovates access to Plaza de San Francisco

  • A total of 5,384.76 m2 was renovated with the reintegration of 107,695 stone elements, which were removed for preservation during construction work on the Plaza de San Francisco station.
  • The works were finished on time in order to receive the hundreds of Quito residents who will take part in the Easter Week processions and activities. 

ACCIONA Construction, through the Quito Metro Line 1 Consortium, continues to make progress on its works, in line with the technical and sustainability criteria required to ensure that construction work causes minimal disruption on the city. Accordingly, on 19 March, the Consortium delivered part of Plaza de San Francisco, in time to welcome the hundreds of people who will take part in the Easter Week processions and activities. 

Renovation work began late last year and affected a total area of 5,384.76 m2. The work consisted of reinstating the original stone elements that covered the square, which were removed to preserve them during the station construction works.

San Francisco station is located beneath the square of the same name, in Quito’s historical quarter, which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1978, and is the best preserved in Latin America. The work to reinstate the stone elements was therefore done according to the protocols approved by the Metropolitan Heritage Institute (IMP).

Archaeological recovery work

Archaeological explorations were carried out in 2014, prior to beginning construction work on the metro station, due to the valuable heritage around San Francisco plaza and church. This initial information was supplemented in 2015 with a study conducted with the Georadar technique to identify the areas of interest that necessitated the subsequent archaeological recovery.

Based on the information gathered in both studies, the cobblestone surface of the square was removed, consisting of 107,695 individual stones, which were taken out manually and preserved using a systematic process of coding, packaging, transfer, storage and safeguarding by the IMP at the Rumipamba Archaeology Park.

Later, the Quito Metro Metropolitan Public Company began the archaeological recovery work in a 466.77 m2 excavation area of the discoveries detected in the exploratory surveys. Most of the finds in the area included incomplete evidence of occupation at different times of the Republican era. One of the most important discoveries were ceramic objects and utensils from the Mayan period, as well as structures excavated in the cangahua stone.

To preserve the relics and highlight the discoveries, ACCIONA Construction, through the Metro Line 1 Consortium, conducted a survey using the laser scan technique. 

Delivery of Plaza San Francisco is a major milestone in the construction of the Quito Metro Line 1, proving that it is possible to carry out work of this magnitude while respecting public spaces and meeting all technical requirements to benefit the community and provide a modern, quick and sustainable mode of transport. Construction work on San Francisco station continues to make progress and is on schedule.

ACCIONA Construction, through the Quito Metro Line 1 Consortium, is building Phase II of an Integrated Mass Transit System for the Metropolitan District of Quito that includes a 22.6-kilometre tunnel with 15 stations. Based on the mobility and geotechnical surveys conducted, these stations are located at strategic locations that will connect the North, Centre and South of the city.

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