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credit: MVRDV + GRAS

Transforming the neighborhood of El Terreno, Mallorca

A colourful, diverse, mixed-use masterplan revives a cultural neighborhood in Palma.

MVRDV and Spanish co-architects GRAS Reynés Arquitectos are transforming the neighborhood of El Terreno in Palma, Mallorca. Their jointly designed plan includes the renovation four existing buildings and aims to add three new ones to reinvigorate El Terreno as a vibrant, green, sustainable and residential neighborhood.

Each of the buildings have their own unique character derived from their colours, materials, and rooflines, together forming a distinctive place that is in tune with the Mediterranean lifestyle. The buildings add 60 rental homes in a variety of styles and sizes, intended for local inhabitants who work in the surrounding area, as well as in additional commercial space.

Recover the essence of the neighborhood

Centred around Plaza Gomila, close to the city’s harbour, El Terreno is among Palma’s most historic neighborhoods. Until the 1990s, it was a cultural hub – home to many artists and writers , and it was known for its nightlife with famous performances by musicians, such as Jimi Hendrix, Ray Charles, and Tom Jones in its bohemian nightclubs. However, it has recently seen a long period of neglect and decline.

The Fluxà Family, owners of the Mallorca-based Camper shoe brand, purchased a series of neighbouring plots around the Plaza and asked MVRDV and GRAS to develop a renewal plan that echoed the Camper’s philosophy of combining heritage with innovation and creativity. The resulting designs, collectively named Project Gomila, aim to recover the essence of the neighborhood.