This one event made my trip to Sevilla. We had stumbled onto it by accident, but it was intriguing none the less. Kylen (one of my friends) and I decided to explore past the old city limits and check out a rocket we say outside of Seville. It was about an hour walk, but when we finally arrived at the structure, it was hiding much more.
Turns out, the rocket was part of an exhibition over 2 decades ago. In 1992, Seville hosted a Universal Exposition. It took place from April 20 to October 12. The theme was “The Age of Discovery”. Over 100 countries and about 41 million people attended the event. The expo showcased inventions, prototypes, and concepts for the city of tomorrow through pavilions, representing every country in attendance, throughout the park. It was set to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the discover of the Americas along with Chicago the same year, but due to budget cuts, Chicago had to decline the offer.
We only later discovered what we had stumbled upon. Many of the pavilions were dismantled after the expo, but some still remain standing, including a few exhibits and the main hall, while others have been converted to a theme park. Kylen and I explored the abandoned areas of the expo. It had been fenced off, but you could see the level of decay in the buildings. The artificial river that once flowed through the park had grown tall grass. Weeds sprouted up from cracks in the buildings and the pavement. Lampposts lay broken and shattered.
We couldn’t resist checking out the area further. We found a bend in the fence, and snuck in. While many of the exhibits inside the main hall had been removed, we peered inside the building to witness the layout. You could see remnants of the park scattered throughout the area. An old globe lay hidden underneath stairs and old furniture can be seen thrown to a side. We didn’t stay long as we feared the police may be near by, but it was intriguing to witness a blast from the past.
It was luck that we found the expo, but the history of the expo truly amazed me. I assume many Olympic structures have taken a similar turn for the worse. Structures that once saw millions of visitors lay abandoned due to a lack of purpose. The experience was very eye opening and made the trip to Seville truly memorable.