Glorieta de la Palma

Glorieta de la Palma is a roundabout in Mexico City that connects Paseo de la Reforma with Río Rhin Street and Niza Street. It is known for its tall palm tree that stood in the middle for a century. The roundabout is the only one along Reforma that has never had a monument.[1] The building of Bolsa Mexicana de Valores is at the roundabout, opposite the Zona Rosa.[2] The area is serviced by the city's Metrobús system at La Palma station, whose pictogram features the palm tree.[3]

Glorieta de la Palma
The roundabout in 2018
The roundabout in 2018
Glorieta de la Palma is located in Mexico City Central
Glorieta de la Palma
Glorieta de la Palma
Coordinates: 19°25′43.7894″N 99°9′49.2494″W / 19.428830389°N 99.163680389°W / 19.428830389; -99.163680389Coordinates: 19°25′43.7894″N 99°9′49.2494″W / 19.428830389°N 99.163680389°W / 19.428830389; -99.163680389

The palm died in 2022 due to pathogens and since June 2022 a Montezuma cypress decorates the traffic circle. At the same time, activists placed an anti-monument in memory of the more than 100,000 disappeared people in the country and symbolically renamed the place the Glorieta de las y los Desaparecidos (Roundabout of the Disappeared).

HistoryEdit

 
The roundabout in 1968

The roundabout was included in Louis Bolland's original plan for the boulevard,[4] and finished as Reforma's second roundabout completed in 1865. In 1910, it was built the column of the Angel of Independence and according to one of the versions, the roundabout could be reserved to build another monument to commemorate the bicentenary of Independence in 2010.[5] Over time, up to ten palm trees were planted and the oldest known photograph showing the middle tree is from 1920.[6] All but the central palm tree were removed around 1950.[7]

Carlos Martínez Assad, emeritus researcher at the National Autonomous University of Mexico contested the age of the palm and considers its real age to be between 70 and 80 years as, according to him, it was a gift from Haile Selassie, the last Emperor of Ethiopia, to Lázaro Cárdenas for his position of not recognizing Italy's occupation during the Second Italo-Ethiopian War. He also said that the traffic circle was reserved for a sculpture of Benito Juárez that was sent instead to Guanajuato.[8]

Palm tree death and replacementEdit

 
The palm tree on 24 April 2022

The palm tree died in 2022 because of fungi and pathogens that had affected several palm trees in the city.[9] During the afternoon of 24 April, the government held a symbolic farewell ceremony and during that night they removed it.[10][11] Its remains were transferred to a vivarium in Xochimilco, where artists will elaborate sculptures with the unaffected wood.[12] At the time of its removal, the palm tree was 20 meters (66 ft) high.[13] The city government, headed by Claudia Sheinbaum, surveyed to question which tree should replace it, with options including a jacaranda or a Montezuma cypress; however, a palm tree would not be able to replace it because it would suffer from the same pathogens.[7] With over 77,000 votes, in a non-binding poll,[14] a Montezuma cypress (also known as ahuehuete) was chosen to replace the palm tree. Sheinbaum announced it would be planted on 5 June 2022 (on World Environment Day).[15][16] The tree, which is a native of Monterrey, Nuevo León, is 20 years old, 10 meters (33 ft) tall and weighs 10 metric tons (9.8 long tons; 11 short tons).[17][18]

Two days after being planted, a driver lost control of her vehicle and invaded the roundabout, knocking down one of the cables supporting the tree, and causing it to tip over.[19] The accident, together with the change of habitat, caused the tree to remain with a dry appearance for several weeks. By the end of July of the same year, the tree began to show signs of improvement.[20] Due to the slowness, the city government walled off the traffic circle to prevent pedestrian access in September 2022.[21] The next month, another vehicle impacted the protective fence.[22]

Roundabout of the DisappearedEdit

The first intervention to the traffic circle (left) featured the tree surrounded by pictures of missing people. Weeks later, the tree was enclosed by protective fences. Activists painted and placed their pictures again. Later, these were painted by the authorities with Christmas-themed decorations (right). After that, activists restored their paintings and posters.

On 8 May 2022, collectives in search of disappeared people symbolically appropriated the empty traffic circle, renamed it and installed the Glorieta de las y los Desaparecidos (Roundabout of the Disappeared) anti-monument.[23] As happened with the nearby Glorieta de las mujeres que luchan, which was taken over by feminists, photographs of missing persons were placed on the site. The collectives criticized that there were almost 100,000 cases of missing people in the country as of May 2022 and installed the photographs to make this noticeable. Sheinbaum rejected their initiative because "a group of people cannot be above a vote".[24] The photographs and banners were removed in the following hours by the government. Representatives of the collectives said they were not against the Montezuma cypress, and that both proposals can coexist, but criticized the government for "disappearing the disappeared".[24]

Hours after the Montezuma cypress was planted, activists reinstalled the photographs of missing persons and requested the authorities to formalize the renaming of the roundabout to the Glorieta de las y los Desaparecidos.[25] In this regard, government representatives have mentioned that they would prefer to appropriate the Estela de Luz, a monument also on the avenue, to be transformed into a memorial in the name of the disappeared.[26] On 24 July 2022, human rights groups symbolically renamed the Hamburgo and Glorieta de Colón stations of the Mexico City Metrobús as "Glorieta de las y los Desaparecidos" and "Glorieta de las Mujeres Que Luchan", respectively. The signage maintained the style used by the system and the pictograms of the stations were replaced by the respective protest symbols. The actions are part of the symbolic renaming of Paseo de la Reforma to the Ruta de la Memoria (Route of Memory), in reference to the various anti-monument memorials located on the avenue.[27]

On 6 November 2022, the photographs were removed again and the protective fences were covered with Christmas decorations.[28] Activists repainted the space the following week[29] and asked Andrés Manuel López Obrador, the president of Mexico, to fulfill his promise to meet them to solve the disappearances.[30]

GalleryEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Estrada, Ana (21 April 2022). "¡Adiós, vaquera! Conoce la historia de la Glorieta de la Palma a través de fotografías" [Goodbye, Cowgirl! Get to know the history of the Glorieta de la Palma through pictures]. Yahoo! Style (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 26 April 2022. Retrieved 21 April 2022.
  2. ^ Zamarrón, Israel (21 April 2022). "Adiós a un ícono: retirarán la palma de Reforma por esta razón" [Farewell to an icon: Reforma palm to be removed for this reason]. Forbes (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 21 April 2022. Retrieved 21 April 2022.
  3. ^ "Línea 7: significado de estaciones" [Line 7: meaning of stations]. Mexico City Metrobús (in Spanish). Government of Mexico City. Archived from the original on 8 April 2019. Retrieved 21 April 2022.
  4. ^ "Glorieta de la Palma". Mexico Es Cultura. Archived from the original on 28 December 2018. Retrieved 28 December 2018.
  5. ^ "Glorieta de la Palma". Mexican Routes. 25 November 2019. Archived from the original on 6 August 2020. Retrieved 26 November 2019.
  6. ^ "Esta es la historia de la Glorieta de la Palma en la CDMX" [This is the history of the Glorieta de la Palma in Mexico City]. Expansión (in Spanish). 21 April 2022. Archived from the original on 22 April 2022. Retrieved 21 April 2022.
  7. ^ a b "La Palma de Reforma: el adiós llega tras más de 100 años" [Reforma's palm: farewell arrives after more than 100 years]. El Universal (in Spanish). 21 April 2022. Archived from the original on 22 April 2022. Retrieved 21 April 2022.
  8. ^ Almazán, Alejandro (22 April 2022). "¿Tiene más de 100 años? El mito de la Glorieta de la Palma" [Is it more than 100 years old? The myth of the Glorieta de la Palma]. Milenio (in Spanish). Mexico City. Archived from the original on 23 April 2022. Retrieved 25 April 2022.
  9. ^ Sánchez, Frida (21 April 2022). "Retirarán palmera de Glorieta de La Palma; la mató un hongo" [Palm tree to be removed from Glorieta de La Palma; fungus killed it]. La Razón (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 21 April 2022. Retrieved 21 April 2022.
  10. ^ Mora, Karla (24 April 2022). "Palmas a la palma: capitalinos se despiden del icónico árbol de Reforma" [Claps to the palm: capital city residents bid farewell to the iconic Reforma tree]. El Sol de México. Mexico City. Archived from the original on 24 April 2022. Retrieved 25 April 2022.
  11. ^ Durán, Moisés; García, José Arturo (25 April 2022). "Con sierras, retiran palmera de glorieta en Paseo de la Reforma" [Palm tree removed from roundabout on Paseo de la Reforma with saws]. Milenio (in Spanish). Mexico City. Archived from the original on 25 April 2022. Retrieved 25 April 2022.
  12. ^ Corro, Isidro (25 April 2022). "Glorieta de La Palma en Reforma amanece sin su emblemática palmera" [Glorieta de la Palma in Reforma dawns without its emblematic palm tree]. TV Azteca (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 25 April 2022. Retrieved 25 April 2022.
  13. ^ Sosa, Iván (16 April 2022). "Mengua palmera de Paseo de la Reforma" [Paseo de la Reforma's palm tree wanes]. Reforma (in Spanish). Mexico City. Archived from the original on 26 April 2022. Retrieved 25 April 2022.
  14. ^ Beltrán García, Sergio (12 August 2022). "Glorietas enmudecidas: desaparecer la memoria de las y los desaparecidos" [Muted roundabouts: to disappear the memory of the disappeared]. Gato Pardo (in Spanish).
  15. ^ "Glorieta del Ahuehuete: se plantará el árbol el 5 de junio, anuncia Sheinbaum" [Glorieta del Ahuehuete: tree to be planted on June 5, announces Sheinbaum]. Radio Fórmula (in Spanish). 9 May 2022. Retrieved 10 May 2022.
  16. ^ "¡Una nueva era! Este domingo quedó plantado el Ahuehuete en Paseo de la Reforma" [A new era! This Sunday the Ahuehuete was planted on Paseo de la Reforma]. Medio Tiempo (in Spanish). Mexico City. 5 June 2022. Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  17. ^ Mora, Karla (24 May 2022). "Desde Monterrey, llega a CDMX ahuehuete que sustituirá a Palma de Reforma" [From Monterrey, a new ahuehuete to replace Palma de Reforma arrives in Mexico City]. El Sol de México (in Spanish). Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  18. ^ Sánchez, Astrid (5 June 2022). "Instalan el ahuehuete en la Glorieta de Paseo de la Reforma". La Jornada (in Spanish). Mexico City. Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  19. ^ Pérez Ángeles, Vianey (8 June 2022). "Camioneta se impacta contra Glorieta de la Palma y ladea el ahuehuete" [SUV crashes into Glorieta de la Palma and tilts the ahuehuete]. SDP Noticias (in Spanish). Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  20. ^ Vargas Isita, Héctor (22 July 2022). "Ahuehuete de Paseo de la Reforma comienza a reverdecer: Sedema" [Paseo de la Reforma's Montezuma cypress begins to turn green: Sedema]. Noticieros Televisa. Retrieved 25 July 2022.
  21. ^ Lorenzana, Israel (6 September 2022). "Gobierno de la CDMX protege al Ahuehuete de Reforma; nadie podrá acercarse" [Government of Mexico City protects the Ahuehuete de Reforma; no one will be allowed to go near it]. El Heraldo de México (in Spanish).
  22. ^ "Las impactantes imágenes del choque en la nueva Glorieta del Ahuehuete en Paseo de la Reforma, CDMX" [The shocking images of the crash at the Ahuehuete Roundabout on Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City]. El Heraldo de México (in Spanish). 1 October 2022. Retrieved 13 October 2022.
  23. ^ "Gobierno de la CDMX retira antimonumento a desaparecidos de la Glorieta de la Palma; la gente votó que haya otro árbol: Sheinbaum" [Mexico City government removes anti-monument to the disappeared from the Glorieta de la Palma; people voted for another tree: Sheinbaum]. Animal Político (in Spanish). 8 May 2022. Retrieved 25 July 2022.
  24. ^ a b Guillén, Beatriz (9 May 2022). "Ni palma ni ahuehuete: los colectivos de desaparecidos toman la glorieta de Reforma en Ciudad de México" [Neither palm nor ahuehuete: collectives of the disappeared take the Reforma roundabout in Mexico City]. El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 10 May 2022.
  25. ^ "Familias piden honrar a desaparecidos en icónica glorieta de Ciudad de México" [Families ask to honor disappeared at iconic Mexico City roundabout] (in Spanish). Mexico City: Swissinfo. EFE. 5 June 2022. Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  26. ^ Sosa, Iván (29 May 2022). "Ven en Estela de Luz memorial para víctimas" [Victims' memorial planned for Estela de Luz]. Reforma (in Spanish). Mexico City. Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  27. ^ "Renombran estaciones del Metrobús CDMX en memoria de desaparecidos y mujeres" [Mexico City Metrobús stations are renamed in memory of missing persons and women]. Expansión (in Spanish). 24 July 2022. Retrieved 25 July 2022.
  28. ^ "Familiares de personas desaparecidas acusaron que Sheinbaum prefiere ocultar los casos para no manchar su gobierno" [Relatives of missing persons accused that Sheinbaum prefers to hide the cases so as not to tarnish her government]. Infobae (in Spanish). 10 November 2022. Retrieved 9 December 2022.
  29. ^ Urrutia, Alonso (14 November 2022). "Familiares de desaparecidos reivindican glorieta como un espacio para la memoria" [Relatives of the disappeared claim traffic circle as a space for remembrance]. La Jornada. Mexico city. Retrieved 9 December 2022.
  30. ^ "Activistas protestarán en la Glorieta de las y los Desaparecidos el mismo día de la marcha de AMLO: "Lo vamos a esperar"" [Activists will protest at the Glorieta de las y los Desaparecidos on the same day as AMLO's march: 'We will wait for him']. Animal Político. 24 November 2022. Retrieved 9 December 2022.

External linksEdit