The Chiquito de la Calzada traffic light in Malaga, a great idea badly resolved

The traffic light in honor of Chiquito de la Calzada, on Tomás Echeverría street in Malaga / FRANCIS SILVA

The device has been installed on a sidewalk of Tomás Echeverría, where it does not regulate the passage through the refusal of the Mobility Area

Gregorio Sánchez, better known as Chiquito de la Calzada, could once again have achieved things that seemed unthinkable. For example, that reaching a red light is a reason for joy. The device that the students of the AVE María Schools have created in Malaga in his honor attests to this. With the support of the EMT and Monolec, a company from Malaga that offers electricity services, they have developed a device that accompanies the visual signal of red and green with some of Chiquito's most mythical phrases. "Quietorrr, I'm going to give you a fine that Perry Manso won't take away from you," as a warning to stop the march. "Now! That horse that comes from a bonanza », when the traffic light starts the green phase again. It could have been like that, but the reality is that, in the end, the Chiquito traffic light does not regulate anything.

It became clear this Thursday, once the exact location of the device was known, that it stands on the boulevard of Tomás Echeverría street, in the middle of a sidewalk, where no pedestrians cross and there is no road traffic. In the staging of the start-up of the traffic light, which was attended by representatives of the entire municipal corporation, the mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, insisted several times on the "ornamental" nature of the traffic light. The final result is that of a great idea that remains halfway due to a poorly resolved execution.

To understand the context, we must go back to last May 2021, when the municipal plenary agreed to materialize an initiative proposed by the United We Can group in which the creation of a route through Malaga in tribute to the humorist was established and that the traffic lights that were on the itinerary of this route would imitate the silhouette and sounds of Chiquito. This idea later led to a plan to install the device at one of the intersections on Tomás Echeverría street. The place is loaded with foundation. Here is the house where Chiquito lived with his wife 'Pepita'. The installation of the traffic light was approved unanimously in the municipal plenary session and everything seemed to be on track.

But the original plan ran up against the Mobility Area. In a report commissioned by the area itself, it is pointed out that the device
cannot serve to regulate traffic and that the cost of producing the discs with Chiquito's silhouette would be around 100,000 euros. Another of the conclusions reached by the Mobility Area in the same report is that, used as a regulation element, the traffic light "would generate confusion for people with visual disabilities by emitting noises different from the tones that adapted traffic lights usually use" .

In the bureaucratic web there is still more. Based on this report, the municipal department considers that the traffic light "is not considered an element of traffic regulation from a technical point of view but rather an article of an ornamental nature."

Detail of the traffic light in Malaga

These arguments collide, however, with the implementation of a similar traffic light in another Spanish capital. Since this Wednesday, León has a traffic light that has the city's coat of arms on its discs. Exactly what the initial plan in Malaga foresaw, using the silhouette of Chiquito de la Calzada. Rocío Luque, a “lifelong” neighbor from Huelin, did not hesitate to express some disappointment. "The tribute is deserved, without a doubt, but I don't really understand why they have put it in a place where no one crosses," she said as she left to buy bread.


The official act to present the location of this traffic light brought together councilors from all parties in the Malaga City Council and aroused the interest and curiosity of some neighbors who were walking around the area.

De la Torre, in a short speech, described Chiquito as "unrepeatable" and assured that there was a "moral responsibility for placing the traffic light in the neighborhood where he lived." Will there be more devices in the future? For now, it is something that does not fit into the City Council's plans, as the mayor made clear.

One of the Ave Maria teachers who has contributed to the creation of this traffic light, Francisco Pareja, wanted to highlight the educational value that initiatives of this type have for young people: "They will be able to pass by and see that something they have made ». Juan Tomás Sancho, Chiquito's nephew, remembered his uncle as a person who made "humor a universal value." "He has managed to unite all kinds of people, of all classes and ideologies," he added.

Source link