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Altea buys the Molí dels Moros to its owners to musealize it

Written by on February 18, 2019

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Article Written & Published in Spanish By: Diario Informacion
Translated by Google from Spanish to English

Altea buys the Molí dels Moros to its owners to musealize it

This medieval hydraulic infrastructure is unique in the Valencian Community for the maintenance of its vault. The City Council will catalog the property as a Locally Relevant Property and will consolidate it

On the left, the entrance of Molí de Els Moros. On the right, the side view of it in a first phase of restoration. DIEGO COELLO

The Molí Vell or Molí dels Moros, a hydraulic infrastructure of medieval origin located on the right bank of the Algar river near the bridge of the AP-7 motorway, has been acquired by the City Council of Altea with the purpose of including it in the historical heritage and public of the municipality, “to consolidate it in the future in its musealization as a cultural, educational and tourist claim because it is a differentiating element with respect to the surrounding towns”, according to the councilor of Urbanism and accidental mayor of Altea, Imma Orozco, after the signing of the deed of sale in the Notary of Beatriz Azpitarte.

The mayor said that the cost of the operation “amounts to 76,027.84 euros, charged to the budget for 2018, for the purchase of the building and a total area of 1,717.84 square meters,” and explained that his purchase was decided by the Government team “because, despite the fact that the project to consolidate and adapt Molí had been drafted in this legislature, the fact that it was not a public good prevented us from continuing to invest money in it”.

To assess it, the City commissioned “an appraisal to a specialist in heritage” since the municipal archaeologist “had established this surface as suitable to continue the investigation that should allow to fully understand the operation of the mill”, since since May 2014 the City Council signed an agreement with the owners of the mill for its assignment for 15 years in order to rehabilitate it “had made several interventions, but we could not continue investing in their recovery because the law only allowed it in cases of concession agreements to 50 years to be able to invest public money”.

With the purchase of the mill and its territory by the City Council, the space will be classified as “Locally Relevant Property” and in the coming weeks, “we will initiate the bidding for Phase II of the Adjustment and Consolidation Project that corresponds to the stabilization of the structure”. Orozco said that it is to facilitate “the interventions planned in the comprehensive recovery project drafted in 2016 for a value of more than 100,000 euros, which foresee until its musealization.”

To that end, said the mayor, “we have reached an agreement with the owners, María Pilar Jorro and Ernesto Armada, to whom I would like to thank their willingness and willingness for El Molí to be part of the public and historic heritage of Altea, since the family has understood the value it represents for the people to have this element among their patrimonial assets ». Orozco acknowledged “the effort they have made to get rid of this unique construction that has been his family for so many years.”

A unique mill

The Molí Vell or Molí dels Moros that we know today is the architectural structure of the casal and the remains of an old medieval mill, possibly from the Andalusian period, linked to the Reg Vell d’Altea. It is one of the five mills that exist in Altea, “of which perhaps this is the most valuable, since it is unique to the Valencian Community for the maintenance of its vault,” said Imma Orozco.

Located on a fluvial terrace on the right bank of the Algar River and dominating its channel at 2,400 meters from its mouth, it can now be accessed from the path that runs along the right bank of the river. The landscape in which it is registered is the terraces of orchards dedicated to crops of fruits and vegetables with high profitability and very close to the so-called “algolejes” on the banks of the river.

There is news of its existence in the Middle Ages, possibly linked to the Benimussa farmhouse. In the Carta Puebla of 1617, the previous existence of acequias such as that of Reg Vell or del Molí is cited, according to a study by Jaume Pastor i Fluixà.

This ditch would lead the water to your raft to run the mill. Its situation is therefore within what will be the hydraulic system of what was later called Reg Major or Baix.

Attached to the mill, part of the water basin is conserved, partly underground and used to establish fields. This grounding prevents the exact knowledge of its surface and depth. If we take into account the level curves and the preserved walls, “we can propose a hypothesis about their dimensions,” Orozco said. This raft attached to the mill would have a triangular shape, measuring 100 x 80 x 31 meters, “which gives an area of 1,240 square meters.”

On the other hand, the chronology of the Molí dels Moros places us in the Middle Ages, between the 8th and 17th centuries. During the centuries of domination, the Arabs showed here their close relationship with water, developing to the maximum the tracing of channels, ditches and irrigation and getting a flowering of agriculture and the use of water.

Although it is currently not possible to visit the site in its internal places, it is possible to travel outside from the river path to understand its ingenious operation.

The passage of time and the heavy traffic of heavy vehicles around them, “have made it necessary to close them to strengthen and prop up the building for restoration,” said the councilor who said that the mill “has been widely documented and studied by the City Council before starting with the first restoration interventions, which in 2014 started with the construction of a structure to secure the vault of the house “.

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