Thursday, January 20

The Madrid City Council dismantles any popular initiative: neither the worker ant, nor the Barajas Urban Forest nor the Lucrecia mural

On October 29, suddenly, a new neighbor arrived at the Cerro del Tío Pío park, in Vallecas. A great metallic ant that watched the city. A work of art without a signature that the neighbors quickly adopted as one more and even baptized it as The worker ant of Vallekas, just as Portal Vallecas account. The ant was so happy, moving to the new neighborhood, when the Madrid City Council decided to take it away, you know where. Los vallecanos, with the project ValleyKarte to the front, they have launched a collection of signatures to request the Madrid City Council for the return of the brilliant insect.

The same City Council that has kidnapped the worker ant began to dismantle the Barajas Urban Forest on October 25. About twelve years ago, members of the Barajas Neighborhood Association began to plant trees and take care of them in a space abandoned by the City Council. Municipal workers, escorted by the police, removed the protective nets from the plants, confiscated the irrigation hoses and drip hoses. They have also removed the names of the children who accompanied the trees planted for years by retirees, schoolchildren and neighbors, in general. Anyone who regularly passes through Barajas will have seen the roundabouts overflowing with rabbits. Well, the neighbors warned from the first day that without the protective nets the animals would destroy the most tender trees, as it has already begun to happen.

Also at the end of November, it was known that the City Council intends to erase the mural dedicated to Lucrecia Pérez in the old Aravaca Senior Center (Plaza Corona Boreal). The painting was made in 2017 by a group of young people from the District, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of what is usually considered the first racist crime of our democracy. Since then, it has become the center of the floral offerings that, for 29 years, have been held in honor of Lucrecia on the anniversary of her murder. Yesterday, more than 150 residents, summoned by the Aravaca Osa Mayor Neighborhood Association and the Rosa Luxemburg Sports and Cultural Association, gathered to shout that the mural remains.

The City Council has ignored the strong popular component of Cerro del Tío Pío. It is in its official name, in the popular one – Las Boobs – and even on the ground that is walked on there, formed by the rubble of the shacks where the neighbors who fought to make their neighborhood a habitable place lived. The Barajas District Board has considered that the forest of the residents of Barajas, made up of more than 1,500 trees, is an illegal plantation and has requested the Environmental Area to remove the trees. As a mere administrative, civil servant fact, without stopping to contemplate years of neighborhood daily life of the space. In Aravaca, faced with the need to undertake some works, no one has stopped to think about how to preserve a simple canvas, a piece of wall of great symbolic importance for the Dominican community and the neighborhood of the place. Anyone who takes a look at the photo knows that it is very easy to respect the mural. If you like. Sometimes reflections are not necessary. Only the facts, side by side, are capable of explaining themselves.