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The Bridges Of Gaspar Bennàssar

bennassar

Gaspar Bennàssar i Moner was probably the most influential town architect in Palma ever. He was appointed municipal architect in 1901 and worked for Cort (city hall) until his untimely death in 1933, unrelated to the political upheavals of the time.

His many fine buildings and projects include the Teatre Líric, the Escorxador slaughterhouses, the Triquet building, the Coliseo Balear, the Cine Born cinema building, the Estació Meteorològica (weather station) in Plaça Espanya, the design of Passeig Sagrera and the L’Àguila building near Plaça Major. S’Arquitecte also designed a couple of bridges in Palma, one of which was destroyed by Palma’s mandarins only a year or two ago. The demolition of Palma’s mediaeval city walls which allowed for the widening of the Avenidas must be considered his most lasting achievement, even though personally, I for one lament the walls’ disappearance very much.

Gaspar Bennàssar was also pretty active in Balearic places other than Mallorca’s capital city. He was nominated Arquitecte Diocesà for Menorca during a number of years, he designed the Hotel Príncep Alfonso in Cala Major, he redesigned the Església parroquial in Esporles, and he proposed the impressive bell tower for the Església dels Dolors in Manacor.

I somehow relate to Bennàssar’s bridge spanning the Torrent de sa Riera, in Passeig Mallorca, not far from the old El Corte Inglés (see photo above), simply for the fact that I seem to cross it everytime I am in Palma.

In 1996, Bennàssar was posthumously awarded the title of Fill Il·lustre de Palma (Distinguished Son of Palma).

gaspar_bennassar

The photo (top) was taken in Palma de Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: July 4th, 2009. The time was 11:49:15. The photo (bottom) was taken from the Internet. Thanks are due to Fabian at the Alta Mar website. Muchas gracias.

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