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The metropolis of Barcelona is one of the first ten Europe's urban agglomerations. The geographic and natural conditions of the city - located in area between the sea and the forested mountain ranges running parallel to the coast and divided by broad river valleys - have considerably influenced the formation of its hybrid urban structure. The heart of the agglomeration is still Barcelona, established by the Phoenicians in a natural port at the foot of the Montjiuc hill, growing together with its neighbouring towns for more than two thousand years now, incessantly filling one fragment of natural landscape after another with urban fabric. Monumental edifices and high-rise buildings erected in all historic periods have been inorming visitors of the power of teh city and the same time defining places which are important for its urban composition and status. Recent decades have brought no revolutionary changes in this trend. What was changed, though, are the architectural forms of those most emblematic structures in the scale of the metropolis.
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