Huesca thematic

Number 73. Juny of 2004. Spanish language  Principal menu

Miguel Servet Park (Huesca)

A Municipal Park
for an inexcusable visit

     It was created almost 70 years ago, and it's one of the most prized jewels than possesses the city. It occupies besides the same place by the one that extended in the century XVII the famous gardens of the Palace of Lastanosa, whose elements more noticeable nothings less than a great vegetable labyrinth and a navigable reservoir with a small island in its center. The gardens of Lastanosa were closed with walls painted with mythological scenes and hunting, and in them there was a great number of statues and sources. Hidden spouts of water existed also, that functioned for surprise to wet to the visitors of the garden. Lastanosa had met and cultivated a lot different species from plants, brought of the most diverse places; thits noble of Huesca was proud by supplying even the gardeners of the king. He built besides several caverns and artificial caves to harbor in them a small zoological one of exotic animals (a lion, a tigre, a leopard, a bear, two ostriches)...
     The present Park is dedicated to the memory of Miguel Servet, the theologian and thinker of Aragón (Spain) , born in Villanueva of Sigena about the year 1511, that developed works of astrology, geography, theology and medicine, and to who the discovery of the pulmonary circulation of the blood is attributed. By hiscritical, theological publications with the Christianity of the epoch, was pursued so much by the catholic Investigation as by the protestant churches. In Geneva, feud of the reformer Calvino, was detained, defendant of heresy and burned living in the blaze in 1553.
     In the Park there are two different parts, the old one and another more recent. The first part was created to ends of the 20 s (its construction was initiated in 1928) and the second is an enlargement of the 60-70. The Park counts on a great vegetable number of species: are near 80 the types of trees and different bushes that can find in it. Of the first, the most abundant species are the pine and the plane tree. But there are other many, common from species (black poplar, poplars and cypress) to true living fossils, as the gingo. Native of China and Japan, is the only survivor of a group of plants that had its greater diffusion does more than 200 million years.
      The trees of the Park constitute the refuge of a various and abundant population of fowls, without doubt , the most characteristic fauna of the Miguel Servet Park. In winter, are abundant the crows and the paint starling, that emigrates since the north of Europe to pass in our land the coldest station. In summer, the birds and the fowls fill the park with its songs. During the day we will be able hear the nightingale or to the blackbird, and when the Sun falls them substitutes the tawny owl, a nocturnal predatory of small size and very characteristic song.
      We can initiate the visits since its main entrance, traveling through first the old part. To enter in it, we will find immediately a bust dedicated to Miguel Servet. To the left is the Park-Bar, where the people gather in summer to take a soft drink to the shadow of the trees (plane trees in this case). To ours right a long one is opened "street", that has in its end the Monument to the Pajaritas -origami bird- of Ramón Acín. His creator, Ramón Acín, was an artist of Huesca of the vanguards. In 1932 he financed for example " Land without bread " (The Hurdes), the famous documentary one of the also aragonese Luis Buñuel , in which he participated like assistant of direction and commentator. Ramón Acín created the sculpture of "Las Pajaritas" -origami birds- as an allegory of the children, therefore they should be the protagonists of this space. For many people The Pajaritas are inseparably connected with Huesca, after more than 70 years decking the park, and are today one of the emblems more representativbs of the city. Ramón Acín (1888 - 1936) cultivated the sculpture, the drawing and the painting. He designed the Walk of the Pajaritas and the sculpture of the same and assessed al team that projected the park. He was also an active militant anarchist, what carried first to the exile and later to die executed, together with his woman, in the first days of the Spanish Civil War.
      To the end of the street of entrance al Park is the Newsstand of Music, in which concerts are celebrated, above all during the festivals (San Lorenzo). The square where is found has also in the plane tree the dominant species of tree. Here it starts the main street of the Miguel Servet Park, whose more important milestones are the Monument dedicated to the Huesca people dead in war; and the Reservoir with great aquatic number of plants.

      Around this reservoir was planted , when the Park was created, a coppice of pines, that now, 70 years later, are the highest trees of the Miguel Servet Park , reaching the 35 m. of height. At this part a zone of play for children has been installed. And here it was also, excelling above the cups of the trees, one of the automatons was placed to fight against the massive presence of starlings. Since the first section of the main street before arriving al Monument can be agreed to the Rosaleda -rose garden-, one of the most noticeable assemblies of all the Park. This precious space full of rosebushs, that has been renewed in recent years, leads to its time to a small reservoir, situated next to the curious little House of Blancanieves -Snow White-, and to a new area of play for children. With this seen up to now we will have completed practically the visit of the old part.
      To know the most recent enlargement, we can leave from the Monument of the main street. The avenue that starts of it will carry us to a great circulate source, that already we can see, and then to the Monument raised in remembrance of the first aragoneses kings. Other prominent assemblies of the modern part of the Park are the Reservoir where always there has been ducks , although now a black couple of swans lives there besides, and the Greek Theater, near the Monument to the kings; at this part the small Source of the Lake (Fuente del Ibón) is found also, that maintains living among the people the remembrance of two of the sources that during centuries supplied of water to the city. That was called exactly of the Lake, and that of the Angel. Both they were situated in the proximities, and they disappeared does not a great deal.      
After it was shuffled several locations for the creation of a municipal park, the project was approved and its final locating, where today we know it, a 16 of March of 1928. By that then the City Hall, with Vicente Campo as mayor, he there was to expropriate slightly more than 3,76 has. of garden and vegetable garden to obtain the lands for the park. Coincidentally, in this same zone already they had been able to contemplate, in century XVII, the famous Gardens of Lastanosa. They carried out the design of the park the architects Antonio Uceda and Bruno Farina and the engineer agrónomo Santos Coarasa ; collaborated with them the architect José Luis of León and the artist Ramón Acín, to who we owe the space of The Pajaritas. Comming explicitly from Barcelona the gardener graduated Domingo Vidal managed the sown, the field and the floral architecture, counting on the aid of the horticulturists gardenersAngel Garcés, Rafael Usón and Juan Guimerá, being this last one to front of the park to 1971. In 1930 the new green lung of Huesca was officiallyi naugurated. In 1931 José Jarné proposed to dedicate the park to Miguel Servet, decision approved by the City Hall that same year.

      In the decade of 1960, with Emilio Miravé in the city hall and José Antonio Llanas as councilman of Parks and Gardens, proceeded to the enlargement of the park. Various spaces were added more toward the southwest, to the present avenue of Juan XXIII, occupying lands of vegetable-gardens. So, this urban vergel exercised of link among the widen of Huesca and the historic center. New elements as the reservoir of swans and ducks were created, the mentioned Greek theater or the luminous source and was incorporated "pre-existenting" nature, as the ditch of irrigation. With the expansion, the surface of the park reached the 6,95 Has.      
      At principle of the century XXI, the Park of Miguel Servet has remained absorbed by the urban growth, so that this green precinct complies not alone the rest area functions, but behaves also as one more street of the city. It is current and common to see to travel for it to pedestrian that cross it in all ways. Today, more than never, it is truth that phrase that I began to hear in the 70 years, that described to Huesca, as "a park surrounded by buildings".


* Manuel Tomé

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