Representatives of Latin American countries met Monday in New York City with local officials to celebrate the return of a series of historic medallions with their national emblems to the Avenida de las Americas and defend the unity of their communities.
New medals for the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Haiti, Argentina, Saint Lucia and Uruguay were unveiled today, installed atop the light poles leading from 42nd Street to 59th Sixth Street Ave. Baptized as America in the middle of the last century.
The group met next to Bryant Park and was chaired by the commissioner of immigration, Manuel Castro, who appeared before leaving without answering questions when a controversial eviction of immigrants from a Manhattan hotel temporarily turned into a shelter was converted, which was not overcome them. A shelter in Brooklyn was condemned as unfit for habitation.
Despite this, the act had a celebratory character, because according to one of the project’s promoters, Commissioner of Transport, Yadanis Rodríguez, the restoration of these symbols had been a local claim for 30 years.
“The creation of Ave de las Americas was a wonderful gesture to celebrate the cultures of our hemisphere, and these beautiful new medallions now once again celebrate the nationalities of the many people who live, work and visit New York City. ” Commissioner said.
“The creation of the Ave of the Americas was a wonderful gesture to celebrate the cultures of our hemisphere, and these beautiful new medals now once again celebrate the nationalities of so many people who live, work and Let’s Travel” – CMS Rodriguez pic.twitter.com/8kvt31y9Tp
— NYC DOT (@NYC_DOT) January 30, 2023
Castro, who at first spoke in Spanish, stressed that it was important to recover these medallions on the busy avenue so that immigrants living and visiting the city would feel “respected” and “represented”, and recalled that the entire Latin More icons are dedicated in America. City.
This is the case for the statues of Benito Juárez and José Bonifacio de Andrada in the same park, or the statues of José Martí, Simón Bolívar and José de San Martín in the vicinity of Central Park.
Mexico’s Consul General, Jorge Islas, also spoke out, insisting that Mayor Eric Adams’ administration sends a “strong message” that “we can all live in unity” and that in 2020 he demanded that these signals be destroyed. be restored to position. Abandoned after decades.
CG today @Jorge_IslasLo Attended the ceremony to unveil the restoration of our national symbol, which has graced the Avenue of the Americas (6th Avenue) in Manhattan since 1959. pic.twitter.com/8m3QddIpFk
– Consulate General of Mexico in New York (@ConsulMexNuy) January 30, 2023
That message was reiterated by the half-dozen consuls present, such as José Sandoval of Ecuador, who recalled Simón Bolívar’s “dream” of unity; and other diplomats who referenced the value of diversity and Latino cultural elements that are part of New York, such as gastronomy.
Originally established in 1959 during the presidency of Dwight Eisenhower and the administration of Mayor Robert Wagner, the medals celebrated the unification of the Western Hemisphere following the division of World War II (1939–1945).
The city announced late last year that the first phase of the restoration project would include 35 medallions.
“The new medallions, which will be installed on 6th Ave (42nd-59th Sts), were designed, manufactured and wind tested by interior engineers and other NYC DOT personnel. Instead of the heavier materials above, the new medallions are made with lighter , weather-resistant aluminum,” the transport department said in another message on social media.
The new medallions being installed on 6th Ave (42nd-59th St.) were designed, built and wind-tested by NYC DOT’s in-house engineers and other staff. Instead of the previous heavy materials, the new medals are made of lighter and more weather-resistant aluminum. pic.twitter.com/YFa8KVhNOZ
— NYC DOT (@NYC_DOT) January 30, 2023