Port-City – Special Plan of the Port of Málaga: union Port-City

At the end of the 20th century, the Port of Málaga experienced an important turning point when it stopped receiving its main traffic at that time: crude oil. At the same time, the ships grew in size and the inner docks began to be insufficient. These two issues led to the Port of Málaga to formulate an Expansion Plan, according to which larger docks would be built with deeper water to attract new traffic that would bring new revenue to the port. This plan was accompanied by the Special Port Plan, with the aim of remodeling those internal docks, which bordered the city, and whose use had decreased.

The Special Plan, approved in 1998, included actions around the perimeter of the Port of Málaga, with a total of 4,000 linear meters and 200,000 m2 of new urban areas. The objective was to transform these areas into an active part of the city, with cultural and leisure areas, shops and restaurants, maintaining port traffic appropriate to each area, to achieve an authentic integration of the port and the city.

Areas affected by the Special Plan

This ambitious project began with the integration made in docks 1 and 2, which we describe below.

View of docks 1 and 2 after reconversion


Pier 2: Palmeral de las Sorpresas

This pier, which runs parallel to the Paseo de los Curas, houses the Palmeral de las Sorpresas, managed by the Housing and Rehabilitation Agency of the Junta de Andalucía, and was opened to the public in 2011.

The project, which was the winner in an international ideas competition, is signed by the architects Jerónimo Junquera and Liliana Obal. It consists of a pedestrian area under a palm tree frame and a pergola that runs parallel to the pier. As part of the Palm Grove scenarios, three buildings are erected that allow maximum visual permeability from the city. One of them is a maritime station for luxury cruise ships, and the other two are for educational and cultural use, with the headquarters of Alborania http://museoalborania.com/.

This urban area is separated from the pier, although without interrupting its vision, in order to respect the ISPS international security code. In this area, luxury cruise ships and mega-yachts dock.

Pier 1: Pier Uno

This space runs parallel to the Paseo de la Farola, and is managed by the company Muelle Uno and was also openened to the public in 2011.



It has two heights, the upper one being a continuation of the Paseo de la Farola itself, bringing it closer to the sea, with walking areas and playgrounds. On the other hand, its lower level, at the height of the pier, mixes the restoration with the commerce, as well as other leisure activities, and puts two underground parking areas at the disposal of locals and visitors. It has a very interesting cultural offer, led by the Center Pompidou Málaga, being the first headquarters of the center that is located outside of France. On this dock operate sports boats and boats for tourist use, among other.

The complete integration of the eastern area of the port area has turned the port into one of the most important images of the tourist offer in the capital. The figures also show its projection: nine million visitors in 2016, and a growth trend.

This performance was awarded in 2016 with the Andalusia Urban Planning Award for the performance performed, awarded by the Department of Environment and Territory Planning of the Junta de Andalucía.

Chalenges for the future

The Special Plan continues its course, contemplating other actions in the western area of the Port of Málaga, and in the Levante area.