The Sagrada Familia will be covered by the year 2010|
The traditional fund-raiser was held to continue construction of the temple. The central nave, of 1,500 square meters, will be finished next December
The Temple of the Sagrada Familia, designed by architect Antoni Gaudí, will be covered by the year 2010, even though the exterior of the roof will still need to be finished. This forecast was made yesterday by the architect who manages the construction, Jordi Bonet, who explained that, by the end of December, they will finish construction of the 45 meter-high vaults of the main nave, which will cover a surface of 1,500 square meters.
Bonet discussed the status of the temple, celebrating the traditional construction fundraiser. Tables were placed around the temple, and Voluntaris 2000 (Volunteers 2000) participated. The Young Escort-Guides of Sant Jordi raised funds throughout the city. There were also visits led by the architect, and Sunday morning there was an open-house session.
Regarding the status of construction, the managing architect explained that the 150 meters of vaults that were still missing in the main nave, as well as 400 square meters of the temple's transept, which crosses the main nave, would be finished over the next two months.
The construction council expects to complete the roof over the apse, the transept and the nave by December 31 of the year 2000, with the intention of holding some events inside.
Bonet pointed out that, by the end of the year, when all the vaults are finished, "we will be able to see the interior of the temple free of scaffolding and work surfaces, as if it were finished, in an area of 1,500 square meters, even though the pointed roof fixtures, which, for the time being, will not be built in order to maintain flat work surfaces, will not be done."
The last foundations of the interior columns are expected to be finished in the coming weeks. "The only foundation work that will remain will be the base of the Gloria Facade, the one facing Carrer Mallorca," Bonet indicated. Regarding work on the transept and the apse, seven columns that were missing have already begun to be raised and the beginnings of the granite, basalt and *profir columns are already visible.
Regarding sculpture, Japanese artist Sotoo has finished the fruits that culminate the lateral window panels, and is currently working in stone on the figures of the singing angels for the Nativity Facade. Josep Maria Subirachs, on the other hand, has finished the sculptures of the Passion Facade in eleven years, four years ahead of initial previsions. He is now working on the main door of this facade, which, like the other two lateral facades that are already finished, is made of bronze. He is also making the images of apostles Bartholomew and Phillip.
The construction council has a budget of 900 million pesetas this year, 200 more than last year. Most of the funds proceed from the sale of tickets to visit the temple. This year a record 1.2 million visitors are expected, 10 percent more than last year.
June 2, 1999