Allies Avenue / Avenida dos Aliados is an important street in the parish of Santo Ildefonso, in the city of Porto, Portugal. With Freedom Square (“Praça da Liberdade”) and General Humberto Delgado Square it is a continuous urban fabric. This is the main avenue and the center of the city of Porto.
The construction project for the avenue started on February 1, 1916. There were a number of short streets and alleys that they called “the lavadouros”. In addition, it had two very busy main streets, parallel, between the corner of Sampaio Bruno and the Largo da Trindade: Dom Pedro Street and Laranjal Street.
The ceremony of the launching of the work, on February 1, 1916, was attended by the then President of the Republic, Bernardino Machado, and consisted of the dismantling of the “first stone” of the baroque palace of Praça da Liberdade, where, from 1816 until then the Porto Chamber was installed. It was precisely on this day that the construction of the current City Hall building just above the Allies was approved in a town hall meeting as part of the expansion plan for the city’s civic center by the English architect Barry Parker. The statue “A Juventude”, by the sculptor Henrique Moreira was installed in 1929. The grandeur of its architectural complex and its central character make it the city’s “living room”, a place where the people of Porto concentrate to celebrate their special moments. All the buildings are of good granite, many of them crowned with lanternins, domes and coruchéus.
The axis of the Allies Avenue / Avenida dos Aliados is marked by a wide central plate that until the middle of 2006 was landscaped and now is completely paved by granite parallelopipeds. Significantly in the middle of the avenue, on either side, are the two mouths of the Allied Station of Line D of the Metro do Porto. It was precisely the construction of the station that originated the complete remodeling of the avenue, which was handed to the architects Álvaro Siza Vieira and Eduardo Souto Moura. The project was involved in a huge dispute because it allegedly distorts the historic and landscape tradition of the place. In spite of everything, the work – which sought to create a continuity between the Allies Avenue / Avenida dos Aliados and Praça de Liberdade – was, in its general lines, concretized. On the afternoon of May 15, 1982, Pope John Paul II presided over a Mass celebrated at the Town Hall on Allies Avenue / Avenida dos Aliados on his first apostolic visit to Portugal. On May 14, 2010, Pope Benedict XVI celebrated Mass on the Allies Avenue / Avenida dos Aliados where there were between 120 and 150 thousand people. At the top, where the building of the City Hall of Porto rises, the avenue gives place to the General Humberto Delgado Square.