Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain: The 18th century
Vitoria in the Neo-classical
After a period of stagnation, Vitoria enjoyed a major economic recovery during the second half of the 18th century, as the result of trade protection and the transformation of the guild system, among other factors.
This recovery is reflected in the enlargement of the gothic city which ocurred around this time.
The city's growth coincided with the pioneering work of the ilustrados, who from 1764 onwards formed the Royal Basque Society of Friends of the Country.
Under the supervision of the architect Justo Antonio Olaguibel, a decision was made to enalrge the city by building Plaza Nueva (Plaza de España) and Los Arquillos (The Arches).
This latter structure was designed by Olaguibel himself, who proposed a taggered construction consisting of a street of archways as a means of bridging the gap in height between the lower ground.