The Building

The Foundation is located on Rua D. Luís I in a river-side area that was known for its strong connections to the sea and industrial works. Housed in a building built in the 1940’s as the H. Vaultier Factory, the restoration process was led by a team of architects and engineers from Portugal Telecom (now, Altice) who preserved the original façade, merely changing its colour from dark pink to bright yellow.

The work on the interior created large areas which are now a museum, with permanent and temporary exhibition rooms, an auditorium, a multi-purpose room, training and meeting rooms, a library, a multimedia area, a shop, a cafeteria, and staff access only areas.

The interior spaces were decorated with high quality materials such as stone for the floors and sidings and noble woods for the walls. Steel, glass and plaster complement the range of finishings.

What can now be visited is a place where the past, present and future come together and cohabit in harmony for the fruition and enjoyment of the general public, especially the younger generations.

For more information link to PT version of the site

History of the Building

The building where the Foundation is located, created by the architect João Simões Antunes, was once a factory and later a Telex Central. Originally owned by Instituto Superior Técnico (a Portuguese engineering university), the building was sold (even though it was still under construction) in 1944 for the price of 645 000 escudos (the Portuguese currency at the time) to the company H. Vaultier. The building had three sections but Vaultier transformed them into one conjoined space.

In 1946, when construction was finished, the owners of the building placed an iron warehouse for the construction industry and fire service and agricultural vehicles repair shops on the first floor. On the second floor, the conveyor belt factories were installed. The third floor was for the hose factory, an exhibition room and a cafeteria for 150 employees.

In 1970, the building gained a new three-floor block. By this time, it was already the property of the General Postal, Telegraphs and Telephones Administration, that bought it in 1969 from Maxime Vaultier for  27 000 000 escudos. The new block was inaugurated in 1973 with a new Telex Central that was part of a plan to remodel and develop the telex and gentex networks.

After the split between CTT (Postal Services) and Portuguese Telecommunications in 1992, the building was given to Portugal Telecom (now Altice). Years later, the Portuguese Communications Foundation inherited the building.