Tram Stop in Alicante
by Subarquitectura



Spanish architects Subarquitectura have sent us images of this tram stop they built on a roundabout in Alicante, Spain.


With the project, which was completed last year, the architects wanted "to turn a traffic circle into a public space".


The following is from  Subarquitectura:


Sergio Cardell Plaza. Alicante. SPAIN

Light Light

Alicante is a 400.000 inhabitants city of the southeast mediterranean spanish coast.  Over the last years,  there has been building a new tram infrastructure, using the old rails of the local train. This line connects all the towns of the coast, ending in Denia, a northern city of the province, where ships departure to Ibiza.


This stop, is the central stage of a new line of the tram, that links the centre of the city to the residential areas of San Juan beach.


The construction of the Tram Stop was the opportunity to bring back a stolen space to the city: to turn a traffic circle into a public space.


Through a fractal access system deformed in each side to avoid the existing trees, the travellers can arrive in a frontal way to the platform in 32 different possibilities.


Over the platforms, 2 empty boxes (36 m long, 3 m wide, 2,5 m high) create a floating void slightly over the travellers’ heads. It matches the size of the train, creating an intermediate scale between buildings and urban elements.


There is no difference between structure and envelope, neither between roof and walls. It is an isotropic material in both conception and construction.


The holes reduce the weight as increase the resistance to normal tensions, and equally decrease wind pressures among the surfaces. Light and air pass through, smoothing the shadow and generating a soft breeze in summer months.


At night the boxes are transformed into two giant lamps.


Benchs are spread over the garden close to the vegetation and the paths, creating a public place overlaying the quiet of the seated people and the movement of the people walking.


Each of the pieces has:

800 holes, in 5 different sizes:

440 diameter 10 cm
240 diameter 20 cm
80 diameter 30 cm
24  diameter 40 cm
12 diameter 50 cm

25 steel tons

13 bar lights

36 meters length
22 meters cantilevered

2 compressed supports
2 stressed supports



32 access paths

20 benchs
12 bins


5 months designing
4 months prefabrication
3 months executing




Posted on Wednesday October 8th 2008 at 8:53 pm by Matylda Krzykowski. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Nakul

    very interesting…

  • graffers playground. but i like it nonetheless

  • WOW!. en verdad que los españoles estan muy por arriba. en cuanto a diseño se refiere….

    Excelente proyecto…..

  • rik

    Interesting indeed. Very simple really but clever.

  • Tyler

    I like the idea of making a traffic circle a public space, but I hate urban spaces that have obviously been designed in plan view. There is no reason why there needs to be 32 different ways to approach the station. Nice looking from above, confusing on the ground.

  • “I like the idea of making a traffic circle a public space, but I hate urban spaces that have obviously been designed in plan view. There is no reason why there needs to be 32 different ways to approach the station.”

    If you didn’t provide these various paths from the entry to the traffic circle to different points along the train boarding deck, you would find scores of dead grass where the concrete is now.

  • Michael

    This is another excellent project. This is EXACTLY why I plan on graduating with a degree in spanish as well as architecture. Simply delightful.

  • ba

    i see no columns…is this suspended?

  • razifohnas

    Finally, someone have figured out a way how to promote better use of round abouts. I hate it back then because it s so bloody confusing for drivers and planting trees suppose make it a better use.

    kudos !

  • wartian

    rich and emptyness

  • ubik17

    I like the idea but when it’s raining, waiting the tram under the station will be a problem. The holes on the upper face will allow all the rain water on the waiting people.

  • asume

    Mate, it barely rains in Alicante !

  • JuiceMajor²

    How is it supported? Can’t see any structure. Is like it is hovering up in the air! Genius!

  • Sullka

    wow Dezeen….this is so 2 years ago!……excellent project indeed.


    what about a meteoroids, holes will let them through

  • leopoldo


    muy buen proyecto.

    gracias por hacernos la vida mas feliz con obras como estas.

  • One

    This is a knowledge. Worth publishing. Good way to gacefully light the halte and keep the suroudings nice and dark at night. Earthquake does not occure in Spain, right?

  • MC

    A great public space….A great project…..muy bien

  • mik

    this rocks!

  • I have been there. My old office was near this roundabout. The boxes aren’t suspended, they have four legs, check the photos again.

  • Bonito essss

  • Kano

    Muy bonito, pero cuando llueve te mojas igual con tantos agujeros…bonito si, funcional no.
    Very nice but with all these holes you´ll get wet when raining… nice but not functional

  • javi

    vivo al lado, y no es tan bonito como en las fotos …

  • Gio

    Another example of an epic fail of form and function. The main purpose of a tram stop is to provide shelter to the passangers. Sooner or later it will rain in Alicante and there will be strong winds. Besides, the height of the canopy does not provide enough protection from the sun in the summer. As I said its an epic fail. It´s a nice cantelivered box, but with no function what so ever.

  • pausem

    Muy bonito, pero ni un triste techo donde cobijarse de la lluvia, ni un banco a la sombra para el verano… qué cosas mas inútiles y bonitas hacen!

  • Gaspar

    I live very close to this tramstation and it’s more beautiful than pictures show. Holes in the ceeling are covered with glass preventing from rainfall.
    I like it! There was a roundabout in this place before… and now it’s a wonderful green park… it’s become a meeting point and a reference in Alicante. People call it “the gruyere stop”.
    This ugly city needs intervenctions like this one.

  • Peter

    Making of – video of the tramstop:

  • New Video: Parametric Romantic Garden for a Tram Station.

  • steve

    Here is a video about this project: "Parametric Romantic" Garden for a Tram Station :