Colonia del Valle
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (August 2011)|
|Colonia del Valle|
|Eje 3 Poniente Amores, San Antonio and Ave. Colonia Del Valle. In background, Condesa (left) and Roma (right) districts and the Paseo de la Reforma skyline. In the middle, the Torre AXA México, formerly Mexicana Tower.|
Benito Juarez borough.
(Map showing location of the borough within Mexico City)
Colonia del Valle (Spanish for: Del Valle neighborhood) is a neighborhood in the Benito Juarez borough of Mexico City. It includes "...a great number of parks, vast and tree-lined streets, prestigious shopping malls, and some city landmarks...".
Del Valle is bounded by the streets of Viaducto Miguel Alemán to the north, Cuauhtémoc and Universidad to the east, Rio Mixcoac - Barranca del Muerto to the south and Insurgentes Avenue to the west. Adjacent neighborhoods include Nápoles, Ciudad de los Deportes, Nochebuena and San Borja to the west, Escandón to the northwest, Roma Sur and Piedad Narvarte to the north, Narvarte, Vértiz Narvarte and Letrán Valle to the east, and Tlacomecatl del Valle, Miguel Alemán, Xoco and Santa Cruz Atoyac to the south.
Origin and development
At the beginning of the 20th century the ranches cultivated with alfalfa and fruit trees were divided, giving rise to Colonia Americana (English: American neighborhood). Some neighborhood streets are named after these ranches and their fruit trees, others after Mexican philanthropists.
While serving as a streetcar route from Mexico City to Coyoacán it developed slowly until 1920, when it expanded and the Avenida de los Insurgentes was paved. Large-scale home and mansion construction started. The area also featured monument construction and green areas; one is the Paque Hundido, built on a former sand mine.
In the 1960s the area was as fully developed as many other neighborhoods of equal purchasing power on its borders. Commercial development included two major facilities, Liverpool Insurgentes opening in 1962 and the country's first shopping center, University Plaza, in 1969.
In 1978 the city built the Ejes viales, a system of wide, one-way roads criss-crossing the city, and with this Del Valle was transformed radically and permanently, its tree-lined boulevards with green medians transformed into quasi-freeways. Ejes 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 south crossed from east to west and 1, 2 and 3 from south to north. This drove many families to look for a quieter place to live and began the process of redeveloping the area. Mansions were replaced by apartment buildings, offices or schools.
Major roads running through the neighborhood include: Insurgentes, Cuauhtemoc, Northern Division, University, Félix Cuevas, José María Rico, Xola. Subway line 3 has several stations in the vicinity: Ethiopia, Eugenia, Northern Division, Zapata and Coyoacan.
Crime statistics from 2009 showed that Colonia del Valle was the second most crime-ridden neighborhood in Mexico City, sharing the top 10 list with notorious neighborhoods Tepito and Colonia Doctores. However, 2012 statistics do not place Del Valle on the list of the top 6 most crime-ridden neighborhoods.
The architecture includes large mansions in Californian mission revival Art Deco style and, to a lesser extent, surviving examples of Porfiriato. At the end of the 1960s many small skyscrapers, both commercial and residential, were built, making the area one of the most densely populated of Mexico City. Housing complexes were also built.
It houses churches such as the Temple of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and buildings dating from the period of colonization and conquest between park Tlacoquemécatl including the Temple of San Lorenzo and the Xochimanca, cultural areas and parks like the Sunken Park or Mariscal Sucre Park, the French Kiosk, art galleries, libraries, auditoriums Polyforum Cultural Siqueiros, Plaza México, and Estadio Azul stadium.
The religious structures found in the Del Valle include the Parish of the Most Pure Heart of Mary at the corner of Gabriel Mancera number 415. It was built in the early 20th century. In 1996 several scenes of the film Romeo + Juliet were filmed at the church. Mexican singer Luis Miguel was baptized there.
The Good Lord Parish Office, located in Tlacoquemécatl park, dates from the 16th century. Temple Santo Tomás Actipan, built in 1897, is located at the confluence of the streets of Buffalo and Tiger. The Temple of San Lorenzo Xochimanca, located in the park of the same name, was built in the 16th century. The Temple of Santa Monica, located at No. 126 Strawberry Street opposite the park of San Lorenzo, was built in 1962. The Parish of Divine Providence in Adolfo Prieto street was constructed between 1968 and 1974.
Within the Del Valle are two of the oldest educational institutions in the country; the College and Institute of Mexico and its Centro Universitario Mexico, and the Colegio Simón Bolívar. Graduates of these schools include Octavio Paz and Germán Dehesa.
- "Mapa de la delegación Benito Juárez y la colonia Del Valle" (in Spanish). El Universal. 20. Retrieved 5 August 2011.
- "Colonia del Valle" (in Spanish). ciudaddemexico.com.mx. Retrieved 4 August 2011. "...es conocida por su gran cantidad de parques, sus amplias y arboladas calles, sus prestigiosos centros comerciales y algunos símbolos de la ciudad..."
- "Ubicacion" (in Spanish). Guía Roji. Retrieved 5 August 2011.
- Ledezma, Hector (April 3, 2009). "Del Valle, de las 10 colonias más inseguras del DF" [Del Valle, one of the 10 most unsafe colonias in Mexico City] (in Spanish). Retrieved 12 May 2012.
- Miguel Á. Morales (2013-07-08), "Las 6 zonas más inseguras del DF" [The 6 most unsafe areas in Mexico City], Más por Más (in Spanish), retrieved 2013-10-07
- Colonia del Valle on the Internet (Spanish)