The proposal for Praça do Império Garden intends to take back the spirit of the original project by Cottinelli Telmo and Vasco Lacerda Marques, adapting the Garden to today’s challenges and limitations. The initial project is guided by principles of great simplicity, strong geometric character, ornamental and decorative divestment. “A wide and simple frame and a lowered center” (Cottinelli Telmo, 1939) open to the Tagus and defined by the Jeronimos Monastery, through its perpendicular axis to the monument.
From the sloped lawns towards the lowered center, traces of the coats of arms will be removed, as well as the hedge surrounding them, allowing its use. The privileged sun exposure, the proximity of the water element and its unevenness in relation to the surrounding streets give this space a high potential for leisure.
The previously existing triple row tree alignments surrounding the water element will be reset. This grove, of great importance in terms of the adequacy of the space scale, seeks to reinforce the intensity of water feature, protecting the water vaporized by the spurts from the winds. The lawn with a hedge surrounding the central fountain should be removed allowing visitors to be brought closer to the water element creating a greater relationship with the central element of the garden.
In the frame, the lateral axes perpendicular to the monument will regain their importance, establishing the relationship between the Jeronimos Monastery and the Tagus River. At the northern tip of the garden, bordering the monument, the central path of the Garden closed, recovering its original configuration, returning the primacy to the East-West axis, exalted by the triple row of trees planted near the water element.
The street between Jardim do Praça do Império and Avenida Brasilia will receive a large pedestrian walkway that links the underpass that connects with the Monument of Discoveries. In this space, which defines the boundary of the garden articulating it with the urban mesh, will be planted a reed bed, which enhances the organic nature that refers to the ancient coastal landscape of the place.