Classic filling stations

13 replies [Last post]
Mario Laguna
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-29

N340 from Barcelona to Valencia and N332 from Valencia to Almeria were the Spain's busiest roads, remembered by millions of tourists who travelled the Mediterranean coast from the '50s to the '70s.

Between Valencia and Alicante at Km 215 on N332 a splendid filling station designed and built in 1962 by Spanish architect Juan de Haro (1954-2003) looks like a time warp as it remains in original condition and still fully functional.

It is composed of 5 one-piece concrete umbrellas, all different in high, which look like giant mushrooms, plus a geometrically audacious modern shop.

I recently took the bellow photos in a trip to Alicante in October 2011.

It is worth to fill her up there if you are in the area.

 

Chris Martin
Chris Martin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-20

Fantastic find Mario!

This is the type of new thread I would hope to see people posting on here. I have driven that road, all the way down the coast, more than once. I even did it in the late eighties, for some perverse reason I have forgotten now, in an ex-girlfriend's SEAT Ibiza. It seemed like a neat idea at the time, these were new imports in the UK back then, and she traded in her Mini. Her sister had a holiday villa down south, and 2+2 = 4! Any excuse for a couple of weeks the sun.

One definite memory of the drive down was that the Spanish roadside service stations were worse than the French ones, and they are just a bit worse than the British ones, and we thought they were bad enough. I certainly never remember seeing this one, but I hope they can keep it as it is. As you say, worth a stop.

Another memory of the Spanish east coast road was that it was a concrete surface, noticably rougher and noisier than the French tarmac once you crossed the border. I have not been down there for a long time, but I suppose the traffic is still mostly Brits and Belgians in search of the sun.

Now you have me thinking. I will be on the lookout for some old 'servos' as they call them in Oz, and post some photos as and when.

Chris M.

 

Nuno Granja
Nuno Granja's picture
Offline
Joined: 2011-09-13

Fantastic Mario,

Thanks for sharing.

nuno granja

Mario Laguna
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-29

"designed and built in 1962 by Spanish architect Juan de Haro (1954-2003)"

Sorry for the above misprint.
Obviously he wasn't born in 1954. He passed away in 2003, but 1954 was the year he moved to Madrid, birth date unknown.

 

Chris Martin
Chris Martin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-20

Mario Laguna wrote:

"designed and built in 1962 by Spanish architect Juan de Haro (1954-2003)"

Sorry for the above misprint.
Obviously he wasn't born in 1954. He passed away in 2003, but 1954 was the year he moved to Madrid, birth date unknown.

 

Thanks, I just thought it must have been a typo'. Although I was pretty good with my Lego bricks as a kid, I did not believe he could have designed that at the age of eight!

Chris M.

 

James Elliott
James Elliott's picture
Offline
Joined: 2011-03-11

Where better than Asmara? A simply fascinating place packed with wonderful Deco architecture.

n/a
khjensenbmw
Offline
Joined: 2011-11-17

Looking at the pics of the Spanish gasstaion, I came to wonder, if it is inspired by an old one in Skovshoved Havn north of Copenhagen. It was designed by the famoud danish arcitect Arne Jacobsen in 1937, and is still in use, but now as self service, while the shop is selling ice cream.

http://www.highways.dk/kobenhavn/tankstation.php

arne_jacobsen_tankstation.jpg

Mario Laguna
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-29

When reading the excellent Dutch architecture magazine Mark (No 37, April-May 2012), available in English at £14, I was amazed somebody could be so deeply interested in old filling stations.
"If you look closely at the history of petrol stations, you'll find buildings with greater architectural quality than those you see today", says architect Adam Jirkal, one of the designers of the brand new station in Matuskovo, Slovakia, which is the pilot of a network of petrol stations.
The photo by Tomas Soucek shows a recognizable retro-new style, also found in some new cars, which reminds me of the 1962 Oliva filling station.
By the way, the magazine also includes a story on Look Alike buildings (Seeing Double).

 

Mario Laguna
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-29

Porsche fan Jaume, who is travelling in Ibiza, sent me one photo of the oldest filling station in the Pitiusas archipelago which survives in original (although restored) condition, located at C-733, 3 km from Santa Eulalia del Río.

 

Mario Laguna
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-29

Last summer (2011), Jaume was in Shoshone, a very little town in Death Valley, US, where he found an old filling station. He sent me the nice photo bellow.

 

Mario Laguna
Offline
Joined: 2011-08-29

There is a nice filling station in a town near the Frankfurt-Hahn airport, very well preserved but the missing pumps. The station is located close to the bus stop and the first time I saw it from the bus window I was in my way to the airport. Recently, I went by car and I was able to take a few pics (bellow).