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|This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the Spanish Wikipedia. (February 2010)|
La Concepción de María Purísima
del Nuevo Extremo (original name)
|— City and Commune —|
|Nickname(s): Biobío's Pearl|
|Motto: La Capital del Sur de Chile
The Capital of Southern Chile
|Coordinates (alcalde's office): Coordinates:|
|Founded||October 5, 1550|
|Founder||Pedro de Valdivia|
|• Alcalde||Álvaro Ortiz (DC)|
|• City and Commune||222 km2 (86 sq mi)|
|Elevation||12 m (39 ft)|
|• City and Commune||292,589|
|• Density||1,318/km2 (3,410/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CLT (UTC−4)|
|• Summer (DST)||CLST (UTC−3)|
|Telephone prefix||56 + 41|
|Website||Official website (Spanish)|
Concepción ( pronunciation (help·info)) is a Chilean city and commune belonging to the metropolitan area of Greater Concepción, its one of the largest urban conurbations of Chile. The town of Concepcion has a significant impact on domestic trade being part of the region with most industrialization of the country and politically it has the second majority of representatives in the National Congress of Chile. Its location is in the called Zona Centro Sur (Central South Zone), in the geographic center of the country, and it is the capital of the Concepción Province and VIII Bío Bío Region.
Greater Concepción (Gran Concepción, including Talcahuano, San Pedro de la Paz, Hualpén, Chiguayante, Penco, Tomé, Lota, Coronel, Hualqui and Concepción) is the second-largest conurbation in the country, with 945,650 inhabitants (2012 census). Individually, it is the 11th largest commune in the country, with a population of 229,665.
Concepción was founded by Pedro de Valdivia[FN 1] in 1550 north of the Bío Bío River, at the site which is today known as Penco. At that time it was given the name Concepción del Nuevo Extremo. The new settlement of Concepción was just a few kilometers north of La Frontera (The Frontier), the boundary between Spanish territory and the land of the Mapuche, an American Indian ethnic group that remained independent until the 1870s. The settlement was formally recognized by the Spanish authorities as a town two years later by a royal decree. It was given a coat-of-arms that is still in use today.
Although Concepción was a significant military settlement for the Captaincy-General of Chile, it was overrun and destroyed by Mapuche armies in 1554, and once again after being refounded in 1555. Concepción was restored during the governorship of García Hurtado de Mendoza when he landed there and built a fort on the Alto de Pinto in 1557. The town was refounded once more on January 6, 1558, by captain Jerónimo de Villegas. It became the headquarters of the military forces engaged against the Mapuche in La Araucanía over the next two centuries, growing to a population of 10,000 despite a siege in 1564 and other attacks by the Mapuche. Concepción was the home of the Real Audiencia from 1565 to 1575.
Earthquakes and tsunamis, which razed the town in 1570, 1657, 1687, 1730 and 1751, led the authorities to move the town to its current site in the Valle de la Mocha, alongside the Bío Bío River; the old site lay empty until March 29, 1842, when the present town of Penco was founded.
The new site for the town of Concepción became the main town of the Intendancy of Concepción, whose jurisdiction extended from the Maule River to La Frontera. The first Intendant of Concepción was the Irishman Ambrose O'Higgins, Marquis of Osorno, who later became Royal Governor of Chile and Viceroy of Peru.
When the First National Government Board met in Santiago on September 18, 1810, citizens of Concepción joined up. Concepción was used as the point of entry by the Spanish Army in the attempt by the Viceroyalty of Peru to re-conquer Chile. Concepción politicians and soldiers became a significant political force in the newly-independent country.
On January 1, 1818, Ambrose O'Higgins's son, Bernardo O'Higgins, proclaimed and took the oath of the Chilean War of Independence in the main square of Concepción, which since then has been known as "Plaza de la Independencia". On February 20, 1835, the town again was largely destroyed by an earthquake and had to be rebuilt.
As of 2010, Concepción is the second largest city of Chile. The Universidad de Concepción, founded in 1919, became the first private university in Chile. The neighboring harbor of Talcahuano is the site of the largest naval base in Chile.
27 February 2010 earthquake 
|This section requires expansion. (March 2010)|
On February 27, 2010, an 8.8 magnitude earthquake struck the city of Concepción, killing more than 521 people and injuring thousands nationwide. Following the earthquake, geologists relying on global positioning satellite (GPS) data concluded that the city had been displaced roughly 3 meters (10 feet) to the west as a result of the event. Fortunately, the city avoided the tsunami that followed the earthquake.
After the 2010 Chile earthquake, a prison riot began in Concepción's El Manzano prison following a failed escape attempt by the internees. Different parts of the prison were set on fire and the riot was controlled only after the guards shot into the air and received help from military units. As of 5 March 2010, a Peruvian field hospital has been deployed to the city.
Like all of Chile, the Concepción region is seismically active, with much of Concepción destroyed by a violent earthquake in 1939. An earthquake in 1953 damaged 15% of the town's buildings. Another major earthquake in 1960 had a nearby epicenter.[FN 2]
On February 27, 2010, an earthquake of 8.8 magnitude struck at 35.846°S, 72.719°W, 115 km (71 mi) NNE of the city. The United States Geological Survey said the earthquake struck at 0334 GMT on Saturday at a depth of 35 km (22 mi). The effects were felt as far away as São Paulo, Brazil—2,870 miles (4,620 km).
Concepción is known as "the university city" thanks to the numerous universities within the urban agglomeration, since one of the most important universities of the country were founded here, such as the Universidad de Concepción and Universidad del Biobío. This city also has numerous headquarters for many other universities. In addition, this metropolis has a large educational offer, focused on institutes, centers of technical formation and the universities already mentioned above.
The University Pencopolitana whose name was Pontificia Universidad Pencopolitana de La Concepción (Pontifical Pencopolitana University of The Conception) was an old university founded though a decree of the Bishop of Concepción, delivered to the administration of the Society of Jesus which functioned between the years 1724 and 1767. In May 24 of 1751 an earthquake followed by a tsunami, ravaged the city causing serious damage, including the destruction of the library of the University and all of its funds. As a product of the fury of the watersw, a rich collection of texts of the governance of southern Chile were lost, which resulted in a disaster for the culture and collective memory of the city. Due to the natural disasters, it was decided to relocate the city to the called Valle de la Mocha, location which currently holds. Slowly the seminar was revived in the new location, in a period of decline of academic activity in Chilean monastic universities after the creation of the Universidad de San Felipe, and even came to confer some degree before the Suppression of the Society of Jesus in 1767. The aforementioned University is considered to be the natural and legitimate predecessor of the Universidad Católica de la Santísima Concepción (UCSC), erected by the Archbishop of Concepción in 1991, from the Talcahuano Regional Headquarters of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.
The image of the Pontifical University of Concepción Pencopolitana, is still valid, for His Majesty King Juan Carlos I of Spain in his 1990 speech on the occasion of his inauguration as Doctor Honoris Causa in the University of Chile, in Santiago de Chile, said: "The work of the Pontifical University Pencopolitana should not be ignored, even before the creation of the University of San Felipe."
Meanwhile, the University of Chile imparted into one of the schools in the city, a course of law, which allowed to obtain a law degree. Among his students was Henry Urrutia Manzano, who decades later occupied the presidency of the Supreme Court of Chile.
Only years after, the university began to receive state support, becoming part of the traditional universities, becoming one of three most important universities in the country, and the most importance at the regional level.
Traditional universities 
Private universities 
- Universidad del Desarrollo
- Universidad Andrés Bello
- Universidad Arcis
- Universidad San Sebastián
- Universidad Santo Tomás
- Universidad del Pacífico (Chile)
- Universidad de Las Américas
- Universidad Bolivariana
- Universidad Pedro de Valdivia
- Universidad La República
- Universidad de Aconcagua
- Universidad Tecnológica de Chile INACAP
Professional institutes 
- Instituto Profesional DuocUC, of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
- Instituto Profesional Virginio Gómez, of the Universidad de Concepción
- Instituto Tecnológico, of the Universidad Católica de la Santísima Concepción
- Instituto Profesional Santo Tomás, of the Universidad Santo Tomás
- Instituto Profesional AIEP, of the Universidad Andrés Bello
- Instituto Profesional La Araucana
- Instituto Profesional Providencia
- Instituto de Estudios Bancarios Guillermo Subercaseaux
- Instituto Profesional Diego Portales
- Instituto Profesional Crecic
- Instituto Profesional Placex
- Instituto Profesional INACAP
The climate of Concepción is classified as Köppen Csb, with a dry summer nadir in February. Despite the Csb classification, the climate is generally considered oceanic, because for most of the year it resembles an oceanic climate. The cool waters of the Pacific Ocean help to maintain mild temperatures throughout the year. Temperatures rarely exceed 30 °C (86 °F) or fall below 0 °C (32.0 °F). In the six-month period between May and October, the city receives approximately 83% of its total annual precipitation, which totals 1,130 mm (44 in). The wettest month since records began in 1912 was June 2000 with 565.7 millimetres (22.3 in), whilst all months from November to April have been rainless on occasions.
|Climate data for Concepcion (Carriel Sur), Chile|
|Record high °C (°F)||28.8
|Average high °C (°F)||22.1
|Daily mean °C (°F)||16.9
|Average low °C (°F)||11.1
|Record low °C (°F)||1.4
|Rainfall mm (inches)||17.6
|Avg. rainy days (≥ 1.0 mm)||2.6||2.6||3.7||7.6||14.5||16.1||15.3||13.5||10.2||7.6||4.8||3.5||102|
|Source: Meteo Chile|
According to data collected on 2002 in the Census of the National Institute of Statistics, the township has an area of 221.6 km2 (86 sq mi) and a population of 216,061 inhabitants, of whom 103,860 are men and 112,201 are women.
Conception is home to 11.61% of the total population of the region. 1.88% (4,058 persons) is for rural population and 98.12% (212,003) to urban population.
The Concepción commune population declined sharply because in 1996 it was divided, creating Chiguayante and San Pedro de la Paz. In these communes the population has grown quickly since they have become bedroom communities of Concepción, i.e. residential cities that do not have a center with many shops, such as Concepcion.
It is projected that by 2009 an estimated population of 227,768 inhabitants live in the commune.
There is a significant percentage of foreign residents in the city, the most numerous are the Spanish, Italian and U.S. expatriate communities. Also are smaller segments of German, French, British, Dutch, Greek, Portuguese, Croatian, Scandinavian, Arab and Australian descendants in a city settled by waves of immigration.
Cultural life 
To an outsider, there may be confusion between the demonyms of the inhabitants of Concepción and the nearby city of Penco. Due to the previous location of Concepción being where Penco currently stands, inhabitants of Concepción are called penquistas while inhabitants of Penco are known as pencones.
Concepción is one of the most active cities in Chilean rock music and many famous rock groups in Chile started up in Concepción. Concepción has the second largest concentration of universities in Chile, and is home to three major universities. Concepción currently has four traditional universities:
- Universidad de Concepción
- Universidad Católica de la Santísima Concepción
- Universidad Técnica Federico Santa María
- Universidad del Bío Bío
Concepción is considered to be the "capital of Chilean rock", since numerous bands of this genre have been founded in this city, such as the internationally recognized bands Los Tres and Los Bunkers, and the now missing Emociones Clandestinas and Santos Dumont, or heavier rock bands such as Machuca. Also, known musicians have declared that their first massive presentations have been in this city, as is the case of Los Prisioneros.
Concepción is also knows as "the university city", for the number of universities that exist and which also represent an alternative to various regions of Chile. This is why there is a feedback effect in Concepción, due to that the city is formed by many young adults coming from other places of Chile. This makes the city to be characterized by a youth culture such as music, art, social demands, etc.
Concepción is home of three professional football teams:
- Club Deportivo Universidad de Concepción, currently in the Chilean second division, Liga Chilena de Fútbol: Primera B
- Club Deportivo Ferroviario Almirante Arturo Fernández Vial, currently in the Chilean third division, Tercera A
- Club de Deportes Concepción, currently in the second division, Liga Chilena de Fútbol: Primera B
Basketball is also played at a high professional level. The most notable team is:
- Club Deportivo Universidad de Concepción, currently in DIMAYOR, División Mayor del Básquetbol de Chile
Historically characterized by a strong manufacturing industry, Concepión has also been a major center for distribution and services and the financial basis of the regional economy.
Trade in the city is concentrated in the Plaza Independencia (Independence Square), the pedestrian street Alonso de Ercilla y Zúñiga (built in 1981), and along the major avenues. One such avenue is the Diego Barros Arana street which has developed into the commercial center of the city and the region was until 1907 even known as "calle Comercio" ("Commerce Street"). New commercial centers are being developed around the old central station and the new civic district as a part of the Chilean bicentennial (September 18, 2010). A considerable percentage of local trade is taking place in settlements around the city, in communes such as Hualpén, Talcahuano and San Pedro de la Paz, where there are bustling shopping centers, such as Mall Plaza del Trébol, and where there is a constant commercial development.
Other commercial spots, related to food, are the Vega Monumental and Mercado Central de Concepción (Central Market of Concepción) places offering various services and agricultural and livestock products.
As a commune, Concepción is a third-level administrative division of Chile administered by a municipal council, headed by an alcalde who is directly elected every four years. The municipal building (alcaldía) is located at O'Higgins Nº 525 . The 2008-2012 alcalde is Patricio Kuhn Artigues (UDI). The communal council has the following members:
- Alvaro Ortiz Vera (PDC)
- Rodrigo Díaz Wörner (PDC)
- Christian Paulsen Espejo-Pando (RN)
- Escequiel Riquelme Figueroa (Ind.)
- Fernando Gonzalez Sánchez (UDI)
- Alejandra Smith Becerra (PDC)
- Patricio Lynch Gaete (UDI)
- Jorge Condeza Neuber
Within the electoral divisions of Chile, Concepción is represented in the Chamber of Deputies by José Miguel Ortiz (PDC) and Enrique Van Rysselberghe (UDI) as part of the 44th electoral district, (together with San Pedro de la Paz and Chiguayante). The commune is represented in the Senate by Alejandro Navarro Brain (MAS) and Hosain Sabag Castillo (PDC) as part of the 12th senatorial constituency (Biobío-Cordillera).
Notable citizens 
- Enrique Molina Garmendia - Founder of university of Concepción, one of the top universities in Chile.
- Luis Altamirano - President of the 1924 Government Junta of Chile
- Graciela Araya - opera singer
- José María de la Cruz - Soldier
- Adrián García - Tennis player
- Lisando Henríquez - Footballer
- Ignacio Urrutia Manzano - Politician
- Adelqui Migliar - Film actor, director, writer and producer
- Marco Enriquez Ominami - Politician
- José A. Santos - Retired American jockey
- Paulina Veloso - Lawyer and Socialist Party politician
- Aníbal Zañartu - Politician
- Dominique Lattimore - Model
Twin cities 
||This article needs additional citations for verification. (April 2011)|
About eight or nine cities have sister city associations.
- - Cascavel, Brazil
- - Bethlehem, Palestinian National Authority
- - Guayaquil, Ecuador
- - Rosario, Argentina
- - La Plata, Argentina
- - Auckland, New Zealand
- - Sucre, Bolivia
- - Caracas, Venezuela
- - Palm Desert, California.
Arco de Medicina ("Arch of Medicine"), on the campus of the Universidad de Concepción
Mouth of the Bío Bío River emptying into the Pacific Ocean
Entrance Casa del Arte together with the mural Presencia de América Latina.
Plaza de la Independencia, the Plaza de Armas of Concepcion
View of Ecuador Park, on the slopes of Cerro Caracol.
See also 
- Greater Concepción
- Santa Juana
- Biobío River
- History of the territorial organization of Chile
- Ida Stevenson Weldon Vernon (1969) Pedro de Valdivia, Conquistador of Chile, Greenwood Press
- John Milton Nickles, Marie Siegrist (1965) Bibliography and Index of Geology Exclusive of North America, Geological Society of America, v.28
Line notes 
- I.S.W. Vernon, 1969
- J.M. Nickles, 1965
- Panoramic vista of Concepcion center, Top of left:Bell Tower in University of Concepcion, Top of right:Aerial view of Concepcion Bay, middle: Concepcion palace of justice, Bottom of left:Independence Square, Bottom of right:Ecuador Park
- (Spanish) "Municipality of Concepción". Retrieved 3 September 2010.
- Coronel.cl. "Hito Centro Geográfico de Chile Continental" (in Spanish). Retrieved 20 January 2013. "Playa Blanca (comuna de Coronel, corresponde a la representación del Centro Geográfico de Chile Continental. El Hito corresponde a una estructura monolítica de hormigón de tan solo 2,5 metros de altura, y posee una forma de flecha que indica la orientación Norte-Arica y Sur-Punta Arenas."
- Según proyecciones del INE.
- CNN, "Chile quake moves city more than 10 feet", "9 March 2010" (accessed 10 March 2010)
- Time Magazine, "Quake Response Doesn't Live Up to Chile's Self-Image", Eben Harrell, 4 March 2010 (accessed 4 March 2010)
- El Mercurio, March 1. Cuerpo C, page C13
- UKPA, "Foreign hospitals help out Chile", 6 March 2010 (accessed 6 March 2010)
- Climate explorer for Concepción
- "Información climatológica de estaciones chilenas".
- According to Census 2002, operated by the INE. Note that the agency's projections indicate that 2006 the estimated population of 225,158 inhabitants.
- According to Last 5 census, the INE
- Nuestro.cl. "El sorprendente sonido penquista" (in Spanish). Retrieved 20 January 2013.
- (Spanish) "Government of Chile: SUBDERE - Alcaldes and Councilors". Retrieved 18 September 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Concepcion, Chile|
|Look up Concepción in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
- El Sur, newspaper of Concepción (Spanish)
- Viveconce, Event schedule of Concepción (Spanish)
- Source about Concepción - Encyclopædia Britannica (English)
- Concepción travel guide from Wikivoyage (English)