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Local Heroes

Some people leave their mark on the island of Mallorca more visibly than others. Some even turn into some kind of a local hero. Antonio Parietti Coll was one of those heroes.

Toni was born in 1899 in Mallorca as the son of an Italian father and a Mallorcan mother. After studying Ingeniería de Caminos in Madrid, Antonio Parietti returned to Mallorca where he soon made an impact on the local society during the Nineteen-Twenties. He became the founder of the Círculo de Bellas Artes, president of the Real Mallorca Football Club, then still called Real Sociedad Alfonso XIII and also, president of the Fomento del Turismo. He also was a man of vision. He proposed, and actually built the road to Sa Calobra and later, the road from Pollença to Cap Formentor. He also proposed to build a funicular to the top of Puig Major, a proposal which was approved by the Ministerio de Obras Públicas. Construction at the funicular began in 1936 but, with the outbreak of the Guerra Civil, work had to be halted. At the end of the Guerra Civil, Antonio Parietti made renewed attempts to have the funicular completed but, by now World War II had started and, again, the project was deferred. Ultimately, the engineer changed the plan of a funicular to that of a road leading up to Puig Major. His project was acquired by the Spanish state and subsequently built, however, without the man’s participation.

The road to Sa Calobra is nothing but spectacular. The scenery is spellbinding and the drive is quite literally breathtaking. There is a stunning point at the Nus de sa Corbata where the road circumnavigates a curve of 270° and another one with a spectacular narrow pass between two extremely high rocks (photo above).

A monument at the Mirador de Mal Pas on the road to Cap Formentor celebrates the achievements of this outstanding engineer.

The photo (top) was chosen from my archive. It was taken near Escorca, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: July 5th, 2008. The time was 17:23:25. The photo (bottom) was borrowed from the Internet, courtesy of Wikipedia.

Thank you very much.

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