Galeria Municipal – Centro Interpretativo do Concelho
The Montemor-o-Velho Interpretive Center introduces technological innovation to explore history, customs, experiences and traditions in an interactive and playful way.
Using technological resources and interactive and dynamic exhibition spaces, it is possible to get to know the municipality of Montemor-o-Velho in its various aspects: heritage, gastronomy; traditions; culture; endogenous resources; economic activities; environment and biodiversity. Each visit is intended to be a unique “journey”, in which the visitor is challenged to interact to discover the secrets and history of Montemor-o-Velho, reinforcing the identity ties of the local community, especially the younger ones who, in a certain way, have stopped contacting with some of these identity experiences and customs.
In this space, which originates from the refunctionalization of the old Municipal Market and Gallery, it is possible to enjoy an experience where visitors can breathe and experience the history, heritage, culture and identity of the municipality and its people in an innovative way.
Presentation of the project
The Montemor-o-Velho Interpretive Center is located in the historic center of the town of Montemor-o-Velho, covered by the intervention of Local Action Group AD ELO and is characterized as a strategic project promoted by the municipality of Montemor-o-Velho that aims to qualify, study, preserve and disseminate the municipality’s cultural heritage. The development of the project was supported under the LEADER measure Mainland Portugal Rural Development Program.
The goal of this project was to create the technological functionalities of the Interpretive Center, which provides the dissemination of a set of thematic content linked to the identifying and endogenous elements of the municipality of Montemor-o-Velho. Therefore, each of the tools available at the Interpretive Center aims to use technology in an interactive way, providing the visitors with a complete communication of content that demonstrates the history, identifying elements, places to visit and values of Montemor-o-Velho.
From games to various multimedia content, everything was thought out in detail to take visitors on a journey through the visual, graphic and sound roots of Montemor-o-Velho.
On the ground floor of the old Municipal Gallery, interactive games challenge children and adults to catch crayfish, one of the pests of the Baixo Mondego (Carolino type) rice fields, or to uncover the municipality’s legends, discovering, for example, the chests hidden in the Castle. The “multimedia wall” offers several promotional and informative videos with subtitles. The interactive counters and kiosks showcase the values, personalities and material and immaterial heritage of the municipality. The “Time Tunnel”, on the 1st floor, takes visitors on a journey through Montemor-o-Velho from its beginnings to contemporary times. The strong technological component associated with the space tatgets different types of audiences.
The Montemor-o-Velho Interpretive Center was inaugurated in July 2023 and is open from Tuesday to Sunday and is accessible to people with reduced mobility.
Emblematic character of the project
The project to create the Montemor-o-Velho Interpretive Center was supported by the LEADER measure, highlighting the strong evidence of innovation in the community, presenting itself in the territory as unique and differentiating, as it included the recovery and improvement of an important heritage site in Montemor-o-Velho, the Municipal Gallery (Old Market), boosting its appreciation through conversion and equipping it into an Interpretive Center, allowing the valorization of the municipality’s heritage, cultural, economic and tourist elements.
Specifically, the Interpretive Center was structured to function as an element that stimulates and promotes the preservation and reinforcement of local identity through activities that provide differentiating experiences that have a strong impact on the tourist component of the territory, also promoting its attractiveness. It is also intended that this space constitute a reference element for the school community.
The dynamization of the Interpretive Center promotes and enhances complementarity with other local projects and dynamics, targeting different audiences of the local community.
This project can be transferred to other territories, through the actions of LAGs in the implementation of their Local Development Strategies, adapting its structuring/implementation to specific situations/opportunities. The promotion of local heritage, based on the valorization and refunctionalization of structures, placed at the service of the community and the local economy, are basic factors of the LEADER intervention that are present in this project and that can be disseminated to many other territories.
Networking for the collection and aggregation of various local heritage elements, the promotion of animation initiatives for the development and promotion of rural territories, innovation by developing dynamics using technology, the dissemination and preservation of the territory’s identity elements and the encouragement of initiatives that promote the involvement of new social actors in local development, namely, younger generations, are present in this project.
LAG AD ELO
Associação de Desenvolvimento Local da Bairrada e Mondego (Bairrada and Mondego Local Development Association)