Old New Jerseys never die

They cause unanimity: nobody likes them.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
08 June 2023 Thursday 10:52
2 Reads
Old New Jerseys never die

They cause unanimity: nobody likes them. Even to their own godparents they appear ugly, unkempt, unattractive, out of place in a city that prides itself on good design and refined aesthetic taste, a presumption that, by the way, has long called for an overhaul. They did not finish leaving – some of them continue to delimit the terraces on the road of bars and restaurants – and they have already returned. They can be seen for a few days at the crossroads of the so-called green axes of the Eixample doing what they do best, the reason for their existence, which is none other than defeating any temptation to unduly occupy a space.

The New Jerseys have returned to fulfill a new mission that will surely not be the last, they have reappeared to provide a new service to the common cause (of the commons).

The redevelopment works on Consell de Cent street have not finished yet, although for weeks this pedestrian priority road, in the absence of some retouching, already presents an almost definitive appearance.

Along the Consell de Cent, as well as the other green axes that will remember Ada Colau's passage through the Barcelona mayor's office (Rocafort, Girona, Borrell), hardly any cars circulate. Only at certain hours of the day, numerous vans and delivery vehicles park and test the recently released pavement, showing once again how necessary the missing chamfers are so that the loading and unloading maneuvers do not collapse the district of Barcelona with the greatest economic and commercial activity. .

It is possible to assume that provisionally, until the work is completely finished and the definitive signaling is installed, the concrete barriers at each intersection deter rushed drivers from taking the direct route and heading through the center of the pedestrianized street. You have to put up obstacles and for that the New Jerseys were invented 70 years ago in the American state of the same name.

Posted in strategic places there they are, the resilient, the indestructible, veterans rescued from a short exile on a plot of land in the Clota neighborhood with views of Collserolla, showing the passerby their scars from previous battles and a yellow that is increasingly faded than bad. hides his greyish skin.

Despite the final sprint, the green axes of the Eixample were not finished and in perfect magazine condition for the May 28 elections, as was the wish of their promoters. However, the new Consell de Cent has already become a very popular area for walking and staying.

That undeniable citizen success has not confirmed, for the moment, the bad omens that announced his next requalification in the bottledrome.

More doubts are raised, from the outset, by the question of maintaining public space and, above all, urban greenery. That inexplicable contempt for the common good that from time to time rages against this city, with responsibility shared by natives and foreigners, fills the newly opened flower beds with all kinds of rubbish.

Barcelona has a cleanliness problem, and certainly the results of the current contract can be greatly improved, but above all it suffers from a problem of lack of education and respect that I highly doubt can be resolved by approving a new civic ordinance in the term that will begin on next day 17.

Maintenance is not the only question about the future of these streets converted into promenades. Bars and restaurants in Consell de Cent are already noticing the benefits of the reform. However, the chairs and tables arranged outside in the same number as before the start of the works are hardly noticeable now in such a large space. Better to leave it that way and not fall into the temptation of extending licenses and repeating on these roads the mistakes that made Enric Granados an insufferable street.

The future mayor of Barcelona will have the faucet key.