I imagine that the name “železni franceki” means little to the people who were not born and raised in Zagreb. So let me explain. The nickname “železni franceki” (Iron Francek) refers to the old water pumps that are scattered all around the city with quite a few of them in the Downtown area. Dating back to the late 19th century, those pumps were set at the back of households which didn’t have aqueducts. These public pumps are one of the oldest, but also one of the most unrecognizable landmarks of the city. As time passed, the pumps started becoming unneeded and became forgotten.
In order to prevent the pumps from sinking into eternal oblivion, a crew of five creative individuals, gathered under name Pimp my Pump, started to paint the pumps, giving them new multicolored identities. Each pump is colored with the story behind it. For example, the one on Britanski trg has a motive of this year’s Football World Cup trophy and Adidas Brazuca soccer ball.
And the best thing is that you can drink nice, cold, refreshing water from these pumps. So, when you take a walk around downtown on a hot summer day, make sure you bring an empty bottle to fill the water straight from one of the funny iron pumps that you will probably find on the way.