Mendoza, Argentina

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For the Argentine wine region, see Mendoza wine.
Mendoza
City
Mendoza is located in Argentina
Mendoza
Mendoza
Location in Argentina
Coordinates: 32°53′00″S 68°49′00″W / 32.88333°S 68.81667°W / -32.88333; -68.81667Coordinates: 32°53′00″S 68°49′00″W / 32.88333°S 68.81667°W / -32.88333; -68.81667
Country  Argentina
Province Mendoza
Department Capital
Settled 1561
Founded by Pedro del Castillo
Government
 • Intendant Rodolfo Suarez (UCR)
Area
 • City 54 km2 (21 sq mi)
Elevation 746.5 m (2,449.1 ft)
Population (2010)[1]
 • City 115 041
 • Density 2,055.4/km2 (5,323/sq mi)
 • Urban 1 055 679
 • Demonym Mendocenean (Mendocino/-a Spanish)
Time zone ART (UTC−3)
CPA Base M 5500
Area code(s) +54 261
Website www.ciudaddemendoza.gov.ar

Mendoza (locally: [menˈdosa]) is the capital city of Mendoza Province, in Argentina. It is located in the northern-central part of the province, in a region of foothills and high plains, on the eastern side of the Andes. As of the 2010 census [INDEC], Mendoza's population was 115 041. The metropolitan population was 1 055 679 in 2010, making Greater Mendoza the fourth largest census metropolitan area in the country.

Ruta Nacional 7, the major road running between Buenos Aires and Santiago, runs through Mendoza. The city is a frequent stopover for climbers on their way to Aconcagua (the highest mountain in the Western and Southern Hemispheres) and for adventure travelers interested in mountaineering, hiking, horseback riding, rafting, and other sports. In the winter, skiers come to the city for its easy access to the Andes.

Two of the main industries of Mendoza area are olive oil production and wine making. The region around Greater Mendoza is the largest wine producing area in Latin America. As such, Mendoza is one of nine cities worldwide in the network of Great Capitals of Wine, and the city is an emerging enotourism (Wine tourism) destination and base for exploring the region's hundreds of wineries located along the Argentina Wine Route.

History[edit]

Mendoza Area Fundacional, Antigua Plaza Principal and cabildo, litography by A. Goering, 1858 (i.e. prior to the devastating 1861 earthquake).
Plaza Independencia. The biggest one in Mendoza.
Government House of the Province.

On March 2, 1561, Pedro del Castillo founded the city and named it Ciudad de Mendoza del Nuevo Valle de La Rioja after the governor of Chile, Don García Hurtado de Mendoza.[2] Before the 1560s the area was populated by three tribes, the Huarpes, the Puelches, and the Incas. The Huarpes devised a system of irrigation that was later developed by the Spanish. This allowed for an increase in population that might not have otherwise occurred. The system is still evident today in the wide trenches (acequias), which run along all city streets, watering the approximately 100,000 trees that line every street in Mendoza.

It is estimated that fewer than 80 Spanish settlers lived in the area before 1600, but later prosperity increased due to the use of indigenous and slave labor, and the Jesuit presence in the region. When nearby rivers were tapped as a source of irrigation in 1788 agricultural production increased. The extra revenues generated from this, and the ensuing additional trade with Buenos Aires, no doubt led to the creation of the state of Cuyo in 1813 with José de San Martín as governor. It was from Mendoza that San Martin, other Argentinian patriots and Chilean patriots organized the army with which they won the independence of Chile and Peru.[3]

Mendoza suffered a severe earthquake in 1861 that killed at least 5,000 people. The city was rebuilt, incorporating innovative urban designs that would better tolerate such seismic activity. Mendoza was rebuilt with large squares and wider streets and sidewalks than any other city in Argentina. Avenue Bartolomé Mitre and additional small squares are examples of that design. Tourism, wine production, and more recently the exploitation of hard commodities such as oil[4] and uranium[5] ensure Mendoza's status as a key regional center.

The city's suburbs, the most important of which are Godoy Cruz, Guaymallén, Las Heras, Luján de Cuyo, and Maipú, have in recent decades far outpaced the city proper in population. Comprising half the metro area population of 212,000 in 1947, these suburbs grew to nearly 7/8 of the total metro area of 894,000 by 2009, making Mendoza the most dispersed metro area in Argentina.[6]

In September 2013 a request was presented to the municipality to rename the city to its original native name Huentota, as opposed to the current name Mendoza, a reference to García Hurtado de Mendoza who had been accused of abuses against indigenous people.

A typical view of Mendoza City full of trees and big mountains.

Culture[edit]

General San Martín Park

Mendoza has several museums, including the Museo Cornelio Moyano, a natural history museum, and the Museo del Área Fundacional (Historical Regional Foundation Museum) on Pedro del Castillo Square. The Museo Nacional del Vino (National Wine Museum), focusing on the history of winemaking in the area, is 17 kilometres (11 miles) southeast of Mendoza in Maipú. The Casa de Fader, a historic house museum, is an 1890 mansion once home to artist Fernando Fader in nearby Mayor Drummond, 14 kilometres (9 miles) south of Mendoza. The mansion is home to many of the artist's paintings.

The Fiesta Nacional de la Vendimia (The National Grape Harvest Festival) occurs in early March each year. Part of the festivities include a beauty pageant, where 17 beauty queens from each department of Mendoza Province compete, and one winner is selected by a panel of about 50 judges. The queen of Mendoza city's department does not compete and acts as host for the other queens.

In 2008 National Geographic listed Mendoza as one of the top 10 historic destinations in the world.[7]

Education[edit]

Mendoza has a number of universities, including the major Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, as well as University of Mendoza, a branch of Universidad Congreso, Aconcagua University, and Champagnat University.

Mendoza is a popular place to learn Spanish, and there is a number of Spanish language schools, including Intercultural, Green Fields and SIMA.[8]

Urban structure[edit]

A landscape of a Mendoza City's part seen from the highest of Gómez building.

The city is centered around Plaza Independencia (Independence Plaza) with Avenida Sarmiento running through its center east-west, with the east side pedestrianized (peatonal). Other major streets, running perpendicular to Sarmiento, include Bartolomé Mitre, San Martín, and 9 de Julio (July 9th), those running parallel include Colón, and Las Heras. Four smaller plazas, San Martín, Chile, Italia, and España, are located 2 blocks off each corner of Independence Plaza. Unique to Mendoza are the exposed stone ditches, essentially small canals, which run alongside many of the roads supplying water to the thousands of trees that provide welcome shade. Those deep ditches also represent a fall hazard to unsuspecting visitors, particularly in the dark.[citation needed]

The Parque General San Martín (General San Martín Park) was designed by Carlos Thays. Its grounds include the Mendoza Zoological Park and a football stadium, and it is also the home of the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo. A view of the city is available from the top of Cerro de la Gloria (Mt. Glory).

Transportation[edit]

Mendoza is 1,037 km (644 mi) from Buenos Aires (13 hours by bus) and 380 km (236 mi) from Santiago, Chile (6–7 hours by bus). Mendoza also has an International Airport (MDZ). It takes less than 2 hours to fly from Buenos Aires and less than 1 hour from Santiago.

The public transport system includes buses, the Mendoza trolleybus system, and taxis. The trolleybuses are more comfortable than the city buses, but are slower, not as numerous nor is the system as extensive. In 2008, TransLink of Vancouver, Canada, sold most of its old trolleybus fleet to Mendoza.[9]

A heritage railway, El Tren del Vino (The Wine Train) is being planned which will also provide local transportation; it will run through wine producing districts of Mendoza.[10]

Transandine Railway[edit]

Main article: Transandine Railway

Mendoza's development was helped partly due to its position at the start of the Transandine Railway linking it to Santa Rosa de Los Andes in Chile. The only railway operable between Argentina and Chile, after many years of inactivity, is currently under restoration and testing for its revival as a freight line by Belgrano Cargas.[11][12][13][14]

The Transandine Railway is a 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 38 in) metre gauge line, with sections of Abt rack, whilst the railways it links with are both 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) broad gauge. A journey from Buenos Aires to Chile involved two breaks-of-gauge, and therefore two changes of train, one at Mendoza, and the other at Santa Rosa de Los Andes.

Metrotranvía[edit]

Metrotranvía Mendoza driving by Belgrano street.
Main article: Metrotranvía Mendoza

A new 12.6-kilometre (7.8 mi) light rail line, the Metrotranvía Mendoza, opened in 2012 and served five areas of the Greater Mendoza conurbation. The line runs from Estación Central (es) (at the site of the former intercity passenger train station, in the city centre) south to Maipú, and opened for regular service in October 2012.[15]

In film[edit]

Seven Years in Tibet directed by French director Jean-Jacques Annaud, was shot in and around Mendoza. Several dozens of sets were built, ranging from a 220-yard (200 m) long recreation of the Tibetan capital city of Lhasa (built in the foothills of the Andes), to a 9,000-square-foot (840 m2) recreation of the Hall of Good Deeds in the Potala, the ancient palace of the Dalai Lama (built in an abandoned garlic warehouse outside the city).

Climate[edit]

Mendoza's climate can be characterized as arid (Köppen climate classification BWh or BWk depending on the isotherm used);[16] however, with extensive irrigation the surrounding landscape sustains cultivation with Mediterranean characteristics. Most precipitation in Mendoza falls in the summer months (November–March). Average temperatures for January (summer) are 32 °C (90 °F) during daytime, and 18.4 °C (65.1 °F) at night. July (winter) the average temperatures are 14.7 °C (58.5 °F) and 2.4 °C (36 °F), day and night respectively. Mendoza's annual rainfall is only 223.2 mm (8.8 in), so the intense agriculture is made possible by irrigation from major rivers.

Climate data for Mendoza, Mendoza, Argentina (1981-1990 period)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 40.0
(104)
40.6
(105.1)
37.3
(99.1)
31.8
(89.2)
30.4
(86.7)
30.0
(86)
33.0
(91.4)
31.9
(89.4)
36.0
(96.8)
38.0
(100.4)
40.6
(105.1)
40.3
(104.5)
40.6
(105.1)
Average high °C (°F) 32.0
(89.6)
30.8
(87.4)
27.2
(81)
23.4
(74.1)
19.0
(66.2)
15.5
(59.9)
14.7
(58.5)
18.0
(64.4)
20.4
(68.7)
25.6
(78.1)
29.2
(84.6)
31.7
(89.1)
23.9
(75)
Daily mean °C (°F) 25.2
(77.4)
24.0
(75.2)
20.8
(69.4)
16.5
(61.7)
11.7
(53.1)
8.0
(46.4)
7.8
(46)
10.7
(51.3)
13.3
(55.9)
18.7
(65.7)
22.2
(72)
25.0
(77)
17.0
(62.6)
Average low °C (°F) 18.4
(65.1)
17.5
(63.5)
14.9
(58.8)
10.6
(51.1)
5.7
(42.3)
2.6
(36.7)
2.4
(36.3)
4.4
(39.9)
6.4
(43.5)
11.6
(52.9)
14.8
(58.6)
17.8
(64)
10.5
(50.9)
Record low °C (°F) 7.5
(45.5)
8.1
(46.6)
2.8
(37)
−2.3
(27.9)
−3.9
(25)
−5.4
(22.3)
−7.8
(18)
−5.0
(23)
−2.0
(28.4)
0.4
(32.7)
3.1
(37.6)
5.3
(41.5)
−7.8
(18)
Precipitation mm (inches) 48.2
(1.898)
38.0
(1.496)
34.7
(1.366)
13.4
(0.528)
7.9
(0.311)
3.6
(0.142)
12.2
(0.48)
5.3
(0.209)
13.2
(0.52)
8.2
(0.323)
15.2
(0.598)
23.3
(0.917)
223.2
(8.788)
Avg. precipitation days 7 6 5 3 2 2 4 2 4 3 4 4 46
 % humidity 51 54 62 65 68 66 54 53 45 44 46 45 54.4
Mean monthly sunshine hours 297.6 257.6 235.6 219.0 195.3 168.0 182.9 229.4 225.0 282.1 294.0 285.2 2,871.7
Percent possible sunshine 67 69 61 64 60 56 58 68 63 70 70 64 64
Source #1: Servicio Meteorologico Nacional[17]
Source #2: NOAA (sun 1961–1990)[18]

Gallery[edit]

Sports[edit]

See Category:Sport in Mendoza, Argentina

The city boasts at least two significant football clubs—Independiente Rivadavia and Gimnasia y Esgrima de Mendoza, although neither currently plays in the Primera División. A club from the nearby city of Godoy Cruz, Godoy Cruz Antonio Tomba, is currently in the Primera.

People[edit]

See Category:People from Mendoza, Argentina

Twin towns — Sister cities[edit]

Mendoza is twinned with:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Censo 2008 - Resultados provinciales Mendoza". INDEC. 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-11. 
  2. ^ welcomeargentina.com: Land of the good wine
  3. ^ Morris Charles - The Hannibal of the Andes and the Freedom of Chile
  4. ^ Baldwin Harry L. - Tupungato oil field
  5. ^ New uranium mining projects
  6. ^ INDEC
  7. ^ National Geographic - 2008 Ranking of Historic Places
  8. ^ "SIMA: Spanish in Mendoza Argentina". Spanishinmendozaargentina.greenash.net.au. Retrieved 2013-03-26. 
  9. ^ Aged trolleys sold to Argentine city
  10. ^ Mendoza Wine Train
  11. ^ www.diariodecuyo.com.ar El tren trasandino Accessed 22 June 2009
  12. ^ Volvió el ferrocarril a Mendoza (Spanish)
  13. ^ En julio se licitará tren Los Andes - Mendoza (Spanish)
  14. ^ Revisiting the Transandine Railway - accessed 22 June 2009
  15. ^ "Mendoza light rail service begins" (December 2012). Tramways & Urban Transit, p. 451. LRTA Publishing. ISSN 1460-8324.
  16. ^ M. Kottek; J. Grieser; C. Beck; B. Rudolf; F. Rubel (2006). "World Map of the Köppen-Geiger climate classification updated". Meteorol. Z. 15: 259–263. doi:10.1127/0941-2948/2006/0130. Retrieved April 22, 2009. 
  17. ^ "Datos Estadísticos (Período 1981-1990)" (in Spanish). National Meteorological Service of Argentina. Retrieved August 23, 2012. 
  18. ^ "MENDOZA AERO Climate Normals 1961–1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
  19. ^ "Pesquisa de Legislação Municipal - No 14471" [Research Municipal Legislation - No 14471]. Prefeitura da Cidade de São Paulo [Municipality of the City of São Paulo] (in Portuguese). Archived from the original on 2011-10-18. Retrieved 2013-08-23. 
  20. ^ Lei Municipal de São Paulo 14471 de 2007 WikiSource (Portuguese)
  21. ^ "Sister Cities of Nashville". SCNashville.org. Retrieved August 3, 2011. 

Sources[edit]

  • V. Letelier, Apuntes sobre el terremoto de Mendoza (Santiago de Chile - 1907)
  • V. Blasco Ibánez, Argentina y sus Grandezas (Madrid - 1910)

External links[edit]