Oaxaca mural

Oaxaca mural

Saturday, February 3, 2018

The New Circle

The "Glorieta de Insurgentes" has long been a hub of activity in Mexico City. It is a large circular plaza below street level within the intersection of Insurgentes Avenue and Chapultepec Avenue.

(image taken from the web)

The Glorieta in an earlier era

The Glorieta was built in 1969 as the site of the Insurgentes subway station.  More recently it became an important stop on Line 1 of the Metrobus system.  The plaza is located at the edge of the Zona Rosa, which was one of the most fashionable shopping, dining and nightlife districts in the city.  As the luster faded from the Zona Rosa, the Glorieta also became more tacky.  

Last year a renovation of the Glorieta was begun.  The subway station remained open throughout the construction, but the Metrobus stops were temporarily closed. Although there are still some finishing touches to be done, the project is for the most part completed.  Last Thursday I passed through the plaza to take the bus back to my apartment, and I had my first look at the changes.

Two new fountains now grace the Glorieta.

There are several of the CDMX sculptures (the official abbreviation of the city).

Benches with canopies have been placed around the plaza.

All around the perimeter of the circle there were stalls for small businesses.  As you can see in the above picture, those stalls have not been opened yet.  The old shops were quite junky.  If the old businesses return, I would hope that they are more attractive and better maintained.

All across the pavement of the plaza there are decorative, metal plaques with the names of all the subway stations in the city.

All in all, the renovated Glorieta looks much nicer.


  1. I've long wanted to see the Glorieta renovated. It's such a hub, and surrounded by prosperous neighborhoods. It's really a shame that more hasn't been made of it. Looks like the renovations are pretty superficial.

    But imagine if they built stalls for food vendors and put out tables and chairs to eat on, planted a bunch of palms and jacarandas, and the place would come alive.

    I'm still hoping. This is a good first step.


    Kim G
    Redding, CA
    Where there are zero public plazas worth hanging out in.

    1. I think ultimately it will depend on the quality of the shops that go into the stalls. Obviously, upscale businesses are not going to be attracted to those little spaces, but if there were some clean, attractive food stalls and perhaps some handicraft vendors to draw the tourist trade, it would help.
      I didn't mention that they also redesigned the Metrobus stations. They are more spacious. The people recharging their bus cards are no longer blocking those entering the station.