La Santa María Cathedral is the main tourist resource of the city of Vitoria-Gasteiz and the Historical Territory of Álava. Opened for worship in 2014, it perfectly combines its function as a church with the comprehensive restoration process and Open for Works, the guided tour programme through which thousands of people visit it every year.
Preventive and structural consolidation works of great importance were executed between 2000 and 2016 because of the serious deterioration in the material and structural condition of the building. These works have enabled not only rehabilitation of the damaged parts, but also in-depth knowledge of the origins of the city from the archaeological excavations carried out as a complement to the works in the cathedral and its surroundings. These works have also enabled the recovery and enhancement of the entire cathedral by opening the whole building to tourism and/or cultural uses accessible to the general public.
The recent restoration of the portico roofing and opening of a glazed area has enabled extension of the part of the parapet walk open to visitors and installation of a multipurpose room above the portico. The works are currently focusing on the ambulatory roof and in the next two years will move on to the central nave and the transept roofing. This will open the plenum to visitors and make more interesting guided tours possible.
With the end of the structural consolidation, the conservation and maintenance works so necessary in a building of this type will take centre stage.