«Las glorias» square – The gordian knot of Barcelona


you know the story of the Gordian knot, the one that once made ​​Gordius;? convoluted as the legend said that who let go conquer Asia. Many tried and none succeeded until Alexander the Great came, drew his sword and knot it’s over and with it the legend. Well, more or less this would become the story of the Plaza de las Glorias. A place that is no small thing, because by far is the most striking square in Barcelona plane.


Since the Cerdà planned as the new center of the city this place has suffered countless changes, and apparently none good enough.

Between factories, as the old Olivetti factory, now a building with more posters of rent windows and a large shopping center, railway roads today barely visible but still draws the line Meridiana. The life of this square has been marked by three major avenues that cross, Diagonal, Gran Via and Meridiana.

1960 glorias


This photograph published in La Vanguardia is a statement of intent of what this place was. one scalextrix in the purest sense of the word, not so much for the flyovers, which also, by traffic but also the continuum assemble and disassemble.

This was the appearance of the square if it can be named so in 1956 at the confluence with the north side of Meridian Avenue.

Seen  Rails i ferradures


This postcard 1976 The granvia is a visual and actual border between the districts of verneda and Poble nou and the square is nonsense avenues, gardens drills. To the left is a piece of the market Bellcaire recently transferred.


1976 glorias


This photo is seen in «The Barcelona d’abans, d’avui i semper» I found it particularly interesting, probably because that square 1992, just before the last major reform familiar to me. At that time the TNC (National Theatre of Catalonia) was .. well it just was not, as no one could imagine that there would grow the Agbar tower, finally get the Diagonal cross the square and nobody absolutely nobody could imagine that someday the enchant leave the dust and mud to settle at an amazing building.




On 27 February he left Barcelona through the Plaza de las Glorias, or at least trying when suddenly something caught my attention on the overpass a huge amount of people all with helmet and vest phosphorescent occupied the space that until little had been limited to ground vehicles, including me.

Would it be a concentration of Smurfs?

Were they going to tear down the knot a pickax?

IMG_3220 IMG_3229 - Version 3

It was the day of the first blow hammer, beak or whatever it was to be used to «deconstruct» as information panels said


It seems that this time it is serious and after both fiasco, now the council seems determined to shape this Gordian knot of Barcelona’s urbanism. This is more or less the current project, at least that was published in La Vanguardia.


For now, the reality is different.

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