Itatinga Station: a working hydropower plant heritarization process


ABSTRACT From the case study of Itatinga, a centennial small hydropower plant located in Bertioga, São Paulo State, this article discusses the place of the industrial heritage that operates in Brazilian conservation policies. The analysis is based on a systematic record of the plant structures and a detailed study of its history. These analyses were formulated using research on primary and secondary sources and a series of fieldwork and interviews. This material supported the investigation of Itatinga’s listing process by the São Paulo State Government preservation organ (CONDEPHAAT), which leads to the identification and questioning of the cultural values that sustain Itatinga’s perception as heritage. In a second stage of the research, the analysis was broadened, and the study reflected on the operating industrial heritage protection in the context of the Brazilian national preservation organ (IPHAN), the State of São Paulo preservation organ (CONDEPHAAT), and the literature on industrial heritage. Finally, this article discusses the potential cultural values associated with operating industrial structures, as well as the reluctance to its admission in the official lists, and indicating some possibilities towards its recognition as cultural heritage.