When I walked out at the southern side of the pedestrian Carretera 52 or Carabobo, on my right I saw a wide open area with, in the background, some of the hills surrounding Medellín. At the same time, my eyes were drawn towards groups of poles in the middle of the square. This was the so-called forest of poles, slim concrete structures pointing towards the sky and a special sight in themselves. The actual Cisneros Square is a modern implementation of what had been a square for a longer time. Right across the square, you can still find the railway station of Medellín, even though it has been years since the last train left this station. After the Cuban railway engineer Francisco Javier Cisneros died in 1898, it was decided to rename the square in his honour, and it has been known as Plaza de Cisneros ever since.
On another side of the square, in those times you could find a covered market, and when you see the square now, you realize it must look totally different. The covered market has been replaced by a modern building housing the Biblioteca Empresas Públicas de Medellín, or the EPM Library, and the open space has been elaborated into a remarkable public space with, apart from the unique forest of poles, also bamboo, benches to sit on, water streams, and in between, open spaces to just walk, chat, or admire the modern version of Cisneros Square.
To me, the most remarkable feature of Plaza de Cisneros is undoubtedly the poles - there are 300 of them, they are of various heights, and they just give the square a very special appearance. I wondered how the square would look like in the evening, so I came back later that day, around sunset. Indeed, the square had taken a completely different look. Light coming from below lighted the poles, the cloudy evening sky provided a dramatic background, the library was illuminated from within. Only a few poles had lights in them, most of them had turned into dark straight lines reaching up into the sky.
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Plaza de Cisneros (Colombia). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Plaza de Cisneros. Read more about this site.