Its ever shifting shape has been an icon of the Barcelona skyline for more than 100 years, the fantastical spires of Antoni Gaudí’s most elaborate dream twisting up towards the heavens.
But as the Sagrada Familia cathedral finally nears its completion, a deepening land dispute could mean the vision of Barcelona’s famed modernist architect is never fully realised. Two city blocks now stand in the way of Gaudí’s original design, and a long conceived plan to demolish them may now be shelved by a city government with modern urban pressures on its mind.
Is it logical to spend an enormous amount of money on finishing a church in this era? May be in Spain it (still?) is.
And though the Sagrada Familia may be most famous unfinished church in the world it certainly isn’t the only one. Nearby we have our own: in Malaga. And there is news about it: The mayor of Malaga has given his support to plans by the Bishop of Malaga to add the missing tower to the city’s famous unfinished cathedral.
Francisco de la Torre said that the incomplete building “didn’t give a good impression” of the city.
Last week the local diocese presented plans to update and restore the cathedral, which drew controversy for wanting to redesign the choir space and, most importantly, add the second tower that wasn’t put up in the eighteenth century when funds ran out. Many feel the cathedral should be left as it is.
The mayor added that ‘what Malaga didn’t finish in the eighteenth century, Malaga should finish in the twenty first century’, but said that priority should probably be given to more urgent things like the cathedral’s leaking roof.
Malaga´s cathedral was built between 1528 and 1782 on or near the site of a former mosque. While original plans had allowed for two towers, both lack of funds those donated to American Independence resulted in the completion of only one, giving rise to the name by which the cathedral is affectionately referred to, La Manquita, loosely interpreted as “one armed woman”
The Junta de Andalucía (our regional government) needs to approve the plans and funds need to be raised. Thank God (….) that there is a huge increase in tourists in Malaga to pay for it indirectly. Oh no, we don’t want any more of them, do we?