São João da Madeira

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São João da Madeira
coat of arms map
Coat of arms of São João da Madeira
São João da Madeira (Portugal)
São João da Madeira
Basic data
Region : Norte
Sub-region : Entre Douro e Vouga
District : Aveiro
Concelho : São João da Madeira
Coordinates : 40 ° 54 ′  N , 8 ° 29 ′  W Coordinates: 40 ° 54 ′  N , 8 ° 29 ′  W
Residents: 21,685 (as of June 30, 2011)
Surface: 7.94 km² (as of January 1, 2010)
Population density : 2731 inhabitants per km²
Postal code : 3700
Address of the municipal administration: Junta de Freguesia de São João da Madeira
Av. da Liberdade, nº 354
3700-163 São João da Madeira
Website: www.fsjm.pt
São João da Madeira District
flag map
Flag of Sao Joao da Madeira Location of the São João da Madeira district
Residents: 21,685 (as of June 30, 2011)
Surface: 7.94 km² (as of January 1, 2010)
Population density : 2731 inhabitants per km²
Number of municipalities : 1
Administration address: Câmara Municipal de São João da Madeira
Av. da Liberdade
3701-956 S. João da Madeira
President of the Câmara Municipal: Manuel Castro Almeida ( PSD )
Website: www.cm-sjm.pt

São João da Madeira is a city ( Cidade ) and a district ( concelho ) in Portugal with 21,685 inhabitants (as of June 30, 2011). In a nationwide study in 2010, the place was named the most liveable district in Portugal, and is considered the only city in Europe with nationwide and free wireless Internet access.

São João da Madeira District


The place is about 40 km northeast of the district capital Aveiro and 32 km southeast of Porto , to whose metropolitan area it belongs. The river Ul flows through the place.


Finds prove a successive settlement of the place by Celtiberians , Romans , Visigoths and Arabs . The first official mention of the place comes from the year 1088 . However, the place did not experience its decisive development until industrialization at the end of the 19th century. In addition to the emerging trade, it was primarily the dairy industry and hat manufacturing, and later the shoe industry in particular, which provided the impetus for growth. The opening of the Linha do Vouga railway line in 1908 was a decisive factor, along with the improved road connections and power supply. In 1926 São João da Madeira became an independent circle (concelho). The increasing settlement of industrial companies made the place gain in importance. For example, the Oliva sewing machines manufactured here and the Sanjo sports shoes became known nationwide. In 1984 the previous Vila (small town) was elevated to a city (Cidade).

Especially since the mid-2000s, São João da Madeira made headlines across the country as an innovative city. In 2008 , for example, the city announced a project to be the first city in Europe to offer its citizens internet access via a comprehensive and free WLAN . In June 2012 , all residential and commercial areas in the city were covered, 20% financed from city funds and 80% from EU funds. In 2011 , the place was the first in Portugal to develop an industrial culture project for tourist purposes. In a study based on the Eurofound studies, the Social and Political Science Faculty (ISCSP) of the Technical University of Lisbon identified São João da Madeira as the district with the highest quality of life in Portugal in 2012 .

Culture and sights

The Museu de Chapelaria , which opened in 2005, is dedicated to the history of hat manufacturing, and the former town hall (Paços do Concelho) is a cultural center, Paços da Cultura , which houses the city archive, galleries, and concert and performance rooms. Every year in April the city's theater festival is held there. In the old Cinema Imperador cinema, a project by the architect Filipe Oliveira Dias is being realized with the Centro da Criatividade , which is intended to accommodate and promote cultural and new media projects.

The Parque Urbano do Rio Ul recreation area offers green spaces and nature trails, and Casa da Natureza has a small visitor center with information boards, as well as a river swimming pool , restaurants and sanitary facilities. The city park Jardim Municipal at the town hall, the artistically designed Parque Ferreira de Castro with bar and its mini golf courses, picnic areas, children's playgrounds and recreational areas suitable for the elderly, and the green spaces around the pilgrimage church Santuário de Nossa Senhora dos Milagres, built in 1930, offer additional green areas .

Various industrial monuments can be seen, in particular the listed Fábrica Oliva (the former sewing machine factory Oliva ), and the former hat factory Empresa Industrial de Chapelaria (today Museu de Chapelaria ).


The Associação Desportiva Sanjoanense (English: Sports Association of São João), founded in 1924, is the city's best-known sports club, which, in addition to the football department, also operates roller hockey, handball, basketball, athletics, gymnastics and disabled sports. The sports shoe manufacturer Sanjo gave it its name.

The place with its 4000 square meter sports hall Pavilhão das Travessas was the venue for the men's handball world championship in 2003 . The city was also a stop on the Portugal Tour Volta a Portugal several times . The Portuguese basketball association, the Federação Portuguesa de Basquetebol , has a performance center here. The sports complex Complexo Desportivo Paulo Pinto offers four tennis courts, three swimming pools with Olympic pools and diving boards, two soccer fields, a beach volleyball court and a gym. In 2009, the state championship in BMX freestyle took place on the skate park and the BMX facility in town .



São João da Madeira is the seat of a district of the same name, which is considered the smallest in Portugal. The neighboring districts are (starting clockwise in the north): Santa Maria da Feira and Oliveira de Azeméis .

The district has only one municipality ( Freguesia ), which is also called São João da Madeira.

Population development

Population of São João da Madeira (1527-2001)
1527 1687 1798 1864 1900 1910 1920 1930 1940 1950 1960 1970 1981 1991 2001 2011
200 605 1 296 2 221 3 115 3,954 4 407 5 481 7 424 9 266 11 921 14 105 16 444 18 483 21 102 21 713

Town twinning


In the listed administration building of the former social security, the Edifício da antiga Caixa de Previdência , the training building of the occupational safety authority ( Escola Nacional de Estudos e Formação da Inspecção do Trabalho ) is now housed. The rehabilitation center for disabled children Centro de Recuperação de Crianças Inadaptadas (CERCI) is also located in the city. Furthermore, kindergartens, preschools, elementary schools and all secondary schools are present in town. In the Centro Empresarial e Tecnológico there is also a training center for the shoe industry with the Centro de Formação Profissional da Indústria do Calçado .


Since the late 19th century, industry and trade have been the county's most important economic sectors. Numerous industrial companies and companies in logistics and trade are located in the town and its commercial areas, especially in the Zona Industrial das Travessas and the Centro Empresarial e Tecnológico , a technology and business center. With initiatives such as free WiFi internet for the whole city or the creative center ( Casa da Criatividade ) in the old Cinema Imperador , the city is also positioning itself as an attractive location for new technologies and cultural initiatives. Tourism is to gain further importance through initiatives of industrial culture and cultural tourism.



The place is on the Linha do Vouga railway line .


São João da Madeira has access to the A32 motorway and is only 7 km away from the A1 .


The weekly papers O Regional (founded in 1922, current circulation: 25,000) and O Labor (founded in 1987, current circulation: 3,000) are two local newspapers. The two local radios are Rádio Regional (88.1 MHz) and Rádio Informédia (106.3 MHz).

sons and daughters of the town

Isabel Teixeira Pinto, the mother of the well-known TV presenter Bárbara Guimarães (* 1973 in Sá da Bandeira , Angola), comes from São João da Madeira.

Web links

Commons : São João da Madeira  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. www.ine.pt - indicator resident population by place of residence and sex; Decennial in the database of the Instituto Nacional de Estatística
  2. a b Overview of code assignments from Freguesias on epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu
  3. www.ine.pt - indicator resident population by place of residence and sex; Decennial in the database of the Instituto Nacional de Estatística
  4. www.cm-sjm.pt , accessed on January 10, 2013
  5. www.verportugal.net , accessed January 10, 2013
  6. www.tvi24.iol.pt , accessed on January 10, 2013
  7. www.oregional.pt , accessed on January 10, 2013
  8. Article of June 15, 2012 in the daily newspaper Público , accessed on January 10, 2013
  9. www.cm-sjm.pt , accessed on January 10, 2013
  10. www.monumentos.pt , accessed on January 10, 2013
  11. ditto
  12. www.anmp.pt , accessed on January 10, 2013
  13. www.monumentos.pt , accessed on January 10, 2013