Belgrano, Buenos Aires
||This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the Spanish Wikipedia. (February 2012)|
Clockwise from top: Chinese New Year celebrations in Chinatown, Barracas de Belgrano, a typical residential street in Belgrano "R" and River Plate Stadium.
Location of Belgrano within Buenos Aires
|Autonomous City||Buenos Aires|
|• Total||6.8 km2 (2.6 sq mi)|
|• Density||20,000/km2 (53,000/sq mi)|
|Time zone||ART (UTC-3)|
Belgrano was named after Manuel Belgrano, a politician and military leader who created the national flag of Argentina. In 1820, at Belgrano's death, Buenos Aires' legislature introduced a law to name the next town to be founded after him. This happened in 1855, when the Buenos Aires government, fearful that relatives of Juan Manuel de Rosas would dispute the governmental decision to expropriate Rosas' lands, laid down a new town on part of it and named it Belgrano. The town was declared a city shortly thereafter, due to its booming growth, and in 1880 it became the nation's capital for a few weeks, because of the dispute between the national government and Buenos Aires province for the status of the city of Buenos Aires. It was in Belgrano that the law declaring Buenos Aires as Argentina's federal capital was issued.
In 1887, the federal district was enlarged by the annexation of the towns (partidos) of Belgrano and Flores. Belgranodeutsch or Belgrano-Deutsch is a mixture of German and Spanish spoken in Buenos Aires, specifically in the neighborhood of Belgrano.
Belgrano is an upper-middle-class neighborhood that can be roughly divided into Belgrano R, Belgrano C, central Belgrano, and Lower Belgrano (Bajo Belgrano). The heart of the barrio pulses with life on its main thoroughfare, Avenida Cabildo, which runs Northwest to Southeast; the subway (subte) Line D follows its route.
Avenida Cabildo carries heavy automobile traffic, and features corner cafés, grocery stores, movie theaters, specialty shops, clothing boutiques, bookstores, and other retail venues. Pedestrians are especially numerous on weekend afternoons as Porteños (residents of Buenos Aires) from various areas of the city come to shop.
Most of the neighborhood's densest housing is located in the vicinity of Cabildo. High-rise luxury apartment buildings are clustered on the leafy streets surrounding the Universidad de Belgrano, a private liberal-arts university.
West of Crámer avenue, "Belgrano R" is chiefly residential and lower-density in nature, characterized by calm streets lined with large, mature shade trees. Most buildings in this section are detached single-family homes that follow Anglo-Saxon architectural styles; some residences have sizable backyards with swimming pools. This section is favored by wealthy Argentines and expatriate businesspeople.
Belgrano's sidewalks are often busy with dogwalkers. Even though city ordinances forbid more than ten dogs to a person, it is not uncommon to see double that number—which contributes to the dog-waste problem plaguing many sidewalks.
Other than Cabildo, avenues Libertador, Luis Maria Campos, Crámer, Ricardo Balbín (formerly known as del Tejar), and Figueroa Alcorta run parallel to the riverbank, while Federico Lacroze, Juramento, Monroe and Congreso run from the riverbank to the Southwest direction. Belgrano is served by the Buenos Aires metro line D, many bus lines (notably Colectivo 60), and two commuter rail lines. Approximately 1.5 km to the west of Belgrano lies Avenida General Paz, a major limited-access freeway that defines the city limits of Buenos Aires proper. Beyond this avenue lie the suburbs of Vicente Lopez, Florida and Olivos.
The lush park Barrancas de Belgrano was designed by the famous French-Argentine landscape/park architect Carlos Thays, who designed many open spaces throughout Buenos Aires. Several blocks north of the Belgrano University, Barrancas de Belgrano spans several city blocks and is overlooked by highrise upper-middle class apartment buildings.
On Manuel Belgrano square, a local artisan fair is held regularly, and becomes especially vibrant on weekends. It features a small bust of Manuel Belgrano on its middle spot.
In the edge of the plaza lies the Inmaculada Concepción church, called "La Redonda" (the round one) by locals because of its circular plan. Many weddings are celebrated in this church in the afternoon hours. Two museums are also across Juramento and Cuba streets: Larreta and Sarmiento, respectively. Larreta museum focus on Spanish art. It is located on the former private residence of writer Enrique Larreta, designed by architect Ernesto Bunge on 1882. It features a well kept Andalusian garden. Historical Museum Sarmiento exhibits some objects belonging to former presidents Domingo Faustino Sarmiento and Nicolás Avellaneda. It is located in what used to be Belgrano townhall, where the national congress held its sessions while Belgrano was the capital of the Argentine republic. Nearby, going down to Lower Belgrano (Bajo Belgrano), appears the Barrancas de Belgrano, three squares along together, older Rio de la Plata River natural terraces. Two blocks away, in Lower Bergrano there is the Estadio de Excursionistas, the local football team. Although neighboring Nuñez is widely known as the home of River Plate, its landmark stadium River Plate Stadium—also home of the Argentina national football team—is located within the boundaries of Belgrano.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Belgrano, Buenos Aires has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.
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