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Beauty in public works is a very broad topic, even philosophical tenders, and it really has never been addressed with sufficient formality that would become a concern for engineers. It would be the purpose of this blog, who would awaken in need, something that could be called “artistic restlessness Engineer”.

We must assume that the Civil Engineers does not help much fame in this field so far, especially in environments where more or less cultured, artistic sense has officially guaranteed. And we also recognize that the basis that such fame can have no other comes from the fact that the common prefix the aesthetic and beautiful factor all that with its undeniable importance, involved in the planning or execution of work all driven, a Undoubtedly way, essentially our scientific background and our highly technical and utilitarian subsequent conduct.

First would be appropriate that the official definition of “public works” and give scope for release today is talking about her beauty broadly with complete freedom.

We define public works as those “general use and exploitation enjoying general and public ignorance”. Difficult is generally comment on the beauty of that which is not seen, and easy it is, however, forget about it when he does think that no one has seen.

One simple example that spring to mind are as follows: Who normally cares if your drinking water comes from reservoirs where they can be seen landscapes embellished by important works?

Photo 1: Atazar reservoir

Although hidden; unknown or forgotten and some unforeseen event, is a certain truth beauty and aesthetics of public works, dispensing with the niceties claim giving rise to objective or subjective consideration of beauty.

One can explain the historical development of art as a process of differentiation, a step from the homogeneous to the heterogeneous, from simple to complex. So make beautiful architecture and engineering, will be the art for next to “art of designing and constructing buildings”, “art of designing and constructing public works”. These channels are carved developments in the arts by the impetuous flow of the works themselves.

Sloping side of reality and objectivity of beauty, we express some own opinions on the aesthetic and beautiful factors that, in our opinion, can integrate the beauty of a public work.

 “It’s beautiful all works whose contemplation produces pleasure or admiration.” And like or admire everything that is capable of producing emotion in a profane or inspired by an artist. Owing implicitly defining expression together in this two essentially different aesthetic factors: One intrinsic and extrinsic another: The life aesthetics and aesthetic life of relationship. The problem of “fit” a work in the landscape is a matter of good cause.

We sincerely believe in the permanent values ​​of aesthetics in all its manifestations, since all recognize that art has produced many works throughout history, that no balanced and quiet spirit, over many generations, they discussed the qualifier Fine.

Photo 2: Roman bridge in Cordoba.

Since 1931, the Roman bridge of Córdoba, together with the bridge door and Calahorra Tower is declared of cultural interest in the category of monument. Part of the historic center of Cordoba which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1994.

After successive ramblings, we conclude that corresponds involving public works in part, at least, that “beauty potential” enjoying any art.

Knowing appreciate the beauty of a landscape requires no special title that simply do not always pursue the most economical solutions can be achieved with public works, not only the maintenance of such beauty where it exists, but its creation in many places lacking it .

Finally, we say that the relation of works with others, we previously identified as important aesthetic factor is the sole cause of public works may be known and, therefore, judged by users. It should then do not forget to take care of your beauty.

Concern for creating public works fine! Concern over them known! They should be our current slogans.


Juan R. Ibanez and Carlos Manrique

Students E.T.S.I. Caminos. U.P.M.

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