Santiago de Chile
|Santiago de Chile|
Santiago de Chile on the map of Chile
|City foundation||February 12, 1541|
|- in the metropolitan area||7,112,808|
|Population density||8,407 inhabitants / km 2|
|City structure||37 Comunas|
|Time zone||UTC −4|
|City Presidency||Felipe Alessandri|
|Collage from Santiago de Chile|
The urban area is part of the capital region ( Región Metropolitana ), which includes five provinces in addition to the province of Santiago . 5,220,161 people live in the urban settlement area (área urbana), and 7,112,808 in the entire Región Metropolitana (as of 2017). This means that around 44 percent of all Chileans live in the capital or in its immediate vicinity.
Santiago is actually only the name of the municipality that includes the city center and the government district. 200,792 people live here (2002 census). The agglomeration of Santiago, on the other hand, even includes cities and municipalities in other provinces, such as Puente Alto or San Bernardo .
The city is the undisputed political center of Chile, even if the Chilean parliament, the Congreso Nacional (National Congress), meets in Valparaíso . Santiago is an important traffic junction as well as the most important economic and cultural center of Chile with numerous universities, colleges, museums and monuments. The most important companies in Chile are based in Santiago, as are many foreign branches. The capital is also the country's media hub.
Santiago is located in a basin on the Río Mapocho . This basin forms the northern end of the great Chilean longitudinal valley, which runs meridionally between the coastal cordillera in the west and the Andes in the east and further south, at Puerto Montt , plunges into the sea and the sea routes between the mainland and the offshore islands (including Chiloé , Chonos Archipelago ). The city is bordered to the north by the Aconcagua Valley, to the south by the Rancagua Basin and to the side by the Andean and coastal cordillera.
The Río Mapocho has its source northeast of Santiago in the Andes. After around 50 kilometers the river flows through the capital of Chile. The quality of the water in Santiago decreases sharply. The river flows via Peñaflor to El Monte , where it then flows into the Río Maipo . A large number of canals emanate from the river, the most famous of which are the Maipo Canal and the San Carlos Canal .
The urban area (areá urbana) has an area of 641.4 square kilometers. 22.4 square kilometers belong to the municipality of Santiago. The metropolitan area of Santiago ( Región Metropolitana ) has an area of 15,103.2 square kilometers. The plain of the capital region is covered with wheat, wine and fruit crops. The boiler location in connection with car and industrial emissions often leads to smog in winter , which is often so dense that the mountain range that borders the city area can no longer be seen from the western parts of the city.
Between the 27th and 33rd parallel, which roughly corresponds to the height of Santiago, is the high cordillera, the peaks of which are up to 5,000 meters high. On the Argentine side, about 100 kilometers northeast of the Chilean capital, the Andes reach their highest point here between the 32nd and 33rd parallel with the Aconcagua . The overburden in this area consists of Mesozoic - Cenozoic sediments and volcanic rocks , which are repeatedly broken through by granitic intrusions . At the height of Vallenar (29th degree of latitude) even the old basement of gneiss and mica schists emerges . This block is free of young volcanism.
The strong volcanism is characteristic of the Greater Region. Numerous active volcanoes are still present today. The Aconcagua, at 6,961 meters the highest peak in the Andes, is not a volcano, although it, like Mount Everest, was long thought to be one due to the frequent clouds of clouds at its summit.
The earthquakes are closely related to the volcanism and the young tectonics of the area; the capital region has been hit by numerous earthquakes in its history. The first severe earthquake since Santiago was founded in 1541 hit the region on December 16, 1575. On May 13, 1647 a severe earthquake destroyed the city, killing 12,000 people. Other major quakes occurred on July 8, 1730, November 19, 1822, and August 16, 1906. On March 3, 1985, a number of buildings in Santiago were destroyed by a powerful earthquake.
The agglomeration Gran Santiago is divided according to the Instituto Nacional de Estadísticas (INE) in 37 autonomous communities ( comunas ), of which the municipality of Santiago is one. 32 municipalities are in the province of Santiago , three municipalities in the province of Cordillera ( Pirque , Puente Alto and San José de Maipo ), one municipality in the province of Maipo ( San Bernardo ) and one municipality in the province of Talagante ( Padre Hurtado ). Of the municipality of San José de Maipo, only the districts of Las Obras and Las Vertientes belong to the Gran Santiago agglomeration.
The climate in the capital region is comparable to that of the Mediterranean . It is heavily influenced by the Humboldt Ocean Current along the country's coast. This flows from south to north and transports cold sea water from the Antarctic . While Northern Europe benefits from the warm Gulf Stream for comparison , the water temperatures in Chile are significantly lower at the same latitude (north / south coordinates).
A special feature of the climate is the El Niño effect, also known as the southern oscillation . This climatic phenomenon is effective in the capital region about every seven years and leads to increased precipitation here compared to normal years.
Average monthly temperatures and rainfall for Santiago
The climate in Santiago is generally dry, with sharp temperature changes. The average annual temperature is 14.0 degrees Celsius, the average annual rainfall 312.5 millimeters. The warmest months are December to February with an average of 18.9 to 20.0 degrees Celsius and the coldest June to August with an average of 8.1 to 9.1 degrees Celsius. Most of the precipitation falls from May to August with an average of 57 to 85 millimeters, the lowest from November to April with an average of two to 14 millimeters.
Santiago faces numerous environmental problems . These include excessive pollution of rivers, inadequate waste disposal structures, air pollution, deficits in local public transport and excessive traffic. Air quality poses particular problems. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), it is one of the worst in the world. The city is located in a valley basin around 50 kilometers in diameter, around 500 meters above sea level . In the west are the coastal mountains with mountain heights of over 1,800 meters, in the east the Andes with peaks sometimes over 6,000 meters. Hills also rise to the north and south, whereby the city air is trapped in the valley basin in inversion weather and an air exchange is often hardly possible for days.
From the late 1980s, the Chilean government passed numerous environmental protection laws. Since 1992 new cars and since 1993/94 also new buses and trucks have had to have a catalytic converter . Stricter controls and emission standards were also passed for industry in 1993. Since 1998, the air quality has improved due to the introduction of new limit values. Environmental standards for airborne particles and limit values for arsenic emissions have been introduced. The air pollution in the metropolis is still a cause for concern. In winter (June to September) the high concentration of fine dust and carbon monoxide in the air is the main problem; in summer (January to April) ozone pollution .
The causes lie in the numerous factories and power plants as well as in the traffic and in private households. Due to rapid urbanization, the sharp rise in traffic and the concentration of industry in the metropolitan area , excessive emissions and smog pose a serious threat to public health. During inversion weather conditions, respiratory diseases in particular increase among the population of the capital. In the event of a smog alarm, the driving ban for passenger cars is extended, including cars with catalytic converters. There are immense costs for industrial companies because they have to temporarily stop their activities as part of preventive measures.
City foundation process
On December 13, 1540, the Spanish conquistador Pedro de Valdivia and 170 soldiers, most of them on horseback, reached the Río Mapocho and the Inca administrative center " Tambo Grande" via the Inca Trail , where the streets Independencia and Bandera are today was built on the site of today's Plaza de Armas. After a short crossing of the Mapocho, the administration buildings were occupied to gain control of the area.
The indigenous population , warned in advance by couriers from the Inca ruler Manco Cápac II , had hidden their food and was hostile to the occupiers. In addition, the Spanish invaders ran out of provisions when they arrived and, suffering from hunger, it took them another 20 days until Pedro de Valdivia was able to force the population to negotiate and cooperate.
Santiago was then founded on February 12, 1541 by Pedro de Valdivia under the name "Santiago del Nuevo Extremo". The name should be reminiscent of the Spanish pilgrimage city of Santiago de Compostela . In the same act, the area was raised to the province of "Nueva Extremadura". The ceremony took place on the hill of Cerro Santa Lucía ( called "Huelén" by the Picunche natives), which is now a park on the edge of the historic center. Valdivia chose the place because the Río Mapocho formed a larger island here. This location was favorable to defend the city against the attacks of the Mapuche .
The layout of the new city consisted of straight streets 12 varas (14.35 m) wide, evenly spaced 138 varas (165.08 m) or at right angles to each other. With nine streets in an east-west direction and 15 in a north-south direction, 126 blocks were formed, the so-called “manzanas” or, if cut into a square, also called “cuadras”. One cuadra was designated as the Plaza Mayor and the rest were divided among the conquistadors.
Attempt at destruction
Resistance from the indigenous population soon revived and resulted in further serious clashes. Pedro de Valdivia even had to deal with a mutiny from within his own ranks. As the situation continued to escalate, he had all the caciques in the Mapocho Valley seized and imprisoned in his house in Santiago.
On September 11, 1541, an organized uprising began under the leadership of the Picunche-Kaziken Michimalongo with an attack on Santiago. At the same time, Pedro de Valdivia found himself involved in fighting with part of his troops south in the valley of Cachapoal . The overwhelming majority of the attackers - contemporaries exaggeratedly estimated 10,000 people - were able to burn Santiago down and almost succeeded in freeing the captured caciques.
Shortly before a defeat, Inés de Suárez , Pedro de Valdivia's partner, was able to turn the tide with an idea. She suggested cutting off the heads of the seven captured caciks and throwing them at the feet of the attackers. At first the men did not believe in this survival trick, but Inés carried out her plan. She herself beheaded the first one personally with the sword. When the Indians saw the heads in the hands of the Spanish attackers, they began a confused retreat from the interior of Santiago. But it was only shortly before dark that the attack was finally repelled.
With this spectacular event a state of war and siege that dragged on for three years began. The Cuadra on the north side of the Plaza de Armas was expanded into a refuge with a completely surrounding mud wall 2.50 meters high and 2.10 meters deep , with four low towers in the corners and rooms for storing weapons and goods. The conquistadors found themselves in an extremely precarious situation. They suffered from permanent food shortages and were completely isolated from the rest of the world. Hunting was difficult, and farming on one's own was little relief. They even ran out of clothes and ended up dressing like the indigenous people.
Pedro de Valdivia sent Alonso de Monroy with five horsemen to Peru in January 1542 to request help. For 20 months of hardship, the Santiaguiner had to hold their own against all odds, until in December 1543 Monroy returned with 70 riders and an aid delivery. This ended the isolated and demoralized situation in Santiago. The uprising had failed, the Indians retreated south and the city was relatively safe. About half a year later, further assistance came with Juan Bautista Pastene , and expeditions systematically began from Santiago to colonize the country.
After the fall of Concepción in 1555, the Mapuche marched again towards Santiago. However, they surprisingly withdrew after the destruction of the fortress Peteroa , as they expected a stronger Spanish attack. Pedro de Villagrán, the commander of the Imperial Fortress, succeeded in a nightly surprise attack in killing the war chief ( Toqui ) Lautaro on April 1, 1557.
The first buildings in Santiago were built with the help of Picunche Indians. An arm of the Río Mapocho running further south was later drained and converted into the main street Alameda (today it is called: Avenida Libertador Bernardo O'Higgins ). The term Alameda comes from álamo , a poplar tree that is widespread in central Chile, i.e. comparatively an avenue. In 1778 the first bridge was built over the Río Mapocho, the Puente Cal y Canto bridge, which connected the outlying district of La Chimba with the center.
Agriculture in the vicinity of Santiago was an important industry. Here the encomienda and later the hacienda prevailed, in which the indigenous people were de facto kept as slaves through a system of patronage and repression. Slavery has been officially banned (by European rulers) and reintroduced again and again without changing the actual oppression. The Spaniards were forbidden by decree to live with Indians.
In addition to the Indian attacks, severe earthquakes hampered the development of the city. In 1647 a severe earthquake destroyed Santiago, in 1730 and 1783 further devastating earthquakes followed. Between 1598 and 1723 Dutch traders also hampered Spanish colonial rule.
On February 12, 1817, the Battle of Chacabuco took place in Colina, north of Santiago . Here, Argentine and Chilean independence fighters led by José de San Martín and Bernardo O'Higgins defeated the Spanish royalists. Chile then proclaimed its independence on the same day. The way to Santiago was now free and the independence fighters were able to move into the city on February 14, 1817. Still, the Spaniards weren't completely defeated.
The decision for Chile's independence was made on April 5, 1818 at the Battle of Maipu , on a plain south of Santiago. Here the Chilean forces under Bernardo O'Higgins defeated the Spaniards under General Mariano Osorio , thereby confirming the declaration of independence of February 12, 1817. 2,000 Spaniards died and there were 3,000 prisoners in the course of the battle. The Chileans lost 1,000 men. Bernardo O'Higgins became the first head of state in independent Chile.
During the so-called era of the Authoritarian Republic (from 1830), which lasted until the civil war in 1891, the school system was introduced and cultural life flourished: the Universidad de Chile was founded in Santiago in 1843 and the Pontificia Universidad Católica in 1888 . On December 8, 1863, the Jesuit church Iglesia de la Compañía was destroyed by fire. A memorial was erected to the more than 2,000 victims of the fire exactly ten years later. In 1885 there were 189,322 people in Santiago. At the end of the 19th century, workers began to organize and fight for better working conditions. In 1898, the Sociedad de resistencia (Resistance Association), the first forerunner of the Chilean unions, was founded by railroad workers in Santiago.
Crisis, construction boom and immigration
During the reign of Germán Riesco Errázuriz (1901–1906) the precious metal content of the coin currency was reduced and the peso was significantly devalued, which led to an increase in inflation . A wave of speculation swept through the country and shook the economy of the capital region. Drastic price increases were the result, there were workers' uprisings and large demonstrations in Santiago. The government used the military; around 200 people died in the clashes.
In the 1930s, the city began to transform into a modern, industrialized metropolis. The Barrio Cívico administrative district with many ministries and other public institutions was built around the Presidential Palace ( La Moneda ) . The population increased rapidly due to immigration from northern and southern Chile and in 1940 exceeded the limit of one million. By 1960 it had doubled to two million. This led to an aggravation of the social situation, especially in the slums of Santiago. Many children were considered malnourished, many families were homeless, and unemployment was high.
After Salvador Allende's election victory, wages for blue-collar and white-collar workers were increased by 35 to 60 percent from 1970. The prices for rent and essential basic necessities have been frozen. Education and health care were provided free of charge. Each child received shoes and a liter of free milk a day. The child mortality rate in the capital region fell by 20 percent. The focus of economic policy was on the expropriation of large foreign companies and banks.
1973 army coup
On September 11, 1973 , the military under Augusto Pinochet carried out a coup and blocked the roads and communications from Santiago to Viña del Mar and Valparaíso . In the early hours of the morning they bombed the presidential palace " La Moneda " with fighter planes of the Luftwaffe . Around 2:00 p.m. the army began to storm the palace. After a brief skirmish, Allende ordered the surrender, only he himself remained in the “Hall of Independence” and committed suicide there.
The victims were interned in the National Stadium in Santiago, many of them tortured and killed. The coup in Chile under General Augusto Pinochet ushered in a 17-year dictatorship and radical market-oriented economic reforms. After the civil war-like weeks after the coup with thousands of dead, marked by unbelievable and massive violence on the part of the military, the regime switched to eliminating the political opposition over the next few years. Hundreds of people have been kidnapped, tortured or "shot while trying to escape".
Economic crisis and boom
With the economic crisis of 1982/1983 there were massive protests in Santiago, as a result of which massive action was taken against opposition members. During the protest days in 1983 and 1984, numerous people were shot, demonstrators and bystanders, some of them from moving cars. Arbitrary violence, house searches and military operations in the slums of Santiago ( poblaciónes ) grew steadily. Here the left-wing urban guerrilla Movimiento de Izquierda Revolucionaria (MIR) fought against the dictatorship.
In the course of the 1980s, several members of the opposition were shot “in armed conflict”. Although the number of those who disappeared decreased, the torture of those who criticized the regime did not decrease. The brothers Vergara Toledo , who were shot dead in Santiago in 1986, and the youngsters Rodrigo Rojas and Carmen Quintana , achieved notoriety when they were set on fire by the military, and Rojas died.
After the economic stabilization from 1983 and the following upswing, the first steps towards liberalization began . Economic policy became more pragmatic and the repression less severe. However, this process has often been interrupted or even reversed. A number of political groups developed from the self-help organizations in the slums of Santiago and fought against the dictatorship. There was a wave of bombings in the capital region, especially against high-ranking officers. But with the economic upswing of the 1980s, the situation also calmed down politically.
In 1993 the former GDR State Council Chairman Erich Honecker came to Santiago, where his daughter lived, after the trial against him was discontinued because of his health. He died on May 29, 1994 in the Chilean capital.
Triggered by an increase in subway prices, there have been daily heavy, sometimes violent protests against social inequality in Chile since mid-October 2019. In the course of the unrest, Piñera declared a state of emergency, deployed the military and declared “war against a powerful, irreconcilable enemy,” as he calls the insurgents. Because of the ongoing protests, the government canceled the UN climate conference , which was due to take place in Santiago de Chile in December 2019. The South American football association CONMEBOL was also forced to move the final of the Copa Libertadores 2019 from Santiago de Chile to the Peruvian capital Lima .
In 1541 there were 150 people in Santiago. By 1613 the population rose to over 10,000 and in 1865 there were more than 100,000 people in the region. By 1940 the one million mark was exceeded. Today the greater Santiago area ( Región Metropolitana ) in Chile is the most densely populated region, where almost half of the Chilean inhabitants live. Greater Santiago ( Gran Santiago ) itself had about 5.4 million inhabitants in the 2002 census; it housed about a third of the country's population.
The population of the capital region is characterized by a high degree of homogeneity. The Chileans with European ancestors and mestizos make up around 90 percent of the population. The share of mestizos is around 50 percent, the Mapuche share is around seven percent, the Aymara share 0.5 percent and the Polynesians share 0.2 percent.
During the colonial period, the area was settled by immigrants from all regions of Spain. English, Irish and German settlers immigrated in the early 19th century. The importation of black slaves has been very small at all times. The majority of them were concentrated in Chile, especially in the capital region, but also in Quillota and Valparaíso . Over the centuries, the blacks mingled with the whites and mestizos, so that today the African element has almost completely disappeared. In recent years, poverty refugees from Peru and Bolivia have moved to the region. The economic crisis in Argentina also forced Argentinians to look for work in the neighboring country. A small group of immigrants came from Asia, mostly from Korea, and live in the greater Santiago area.
Most of the people in Chile are Catholics and Santiago is no exception. In the 2002 census, 68.74 percent of people aged 15 or older in the Región Metropolitana were Catholic, 13.08 percent Protestant, 1.16 percent Jehovah's Witnesses , 0.90 percent Mormons , 0.25 percent Jews , 0.11 percent Orthodox and 0.03 percent Muslim. 5.35 percent belonged to other religions and 10.37 percent were atheistic or agnostic .
The following table shows the population of the urban settlement area (areá urbana). Up to 1850 it is mostly an estimate, from 1865 to 2002 census results and 2007 a calculation.
Greater Santiago ( Gran Santiago ) is not governed by a Lord Mayor, but consists of 37 independent municipalities ( comunas ). Opposed to them is the government of the Región Metropolitana as a higher-level administrative unit with high political weight. Each municipality has a mayor ( alcalde ) with strong executive powers over the municipal council ( consejo municipal ). In local elections, it is necessary that the candidate's party receives at least 30 percent of the votes cast. If she fails this hurdle, the mayor is elected indirectly by the local councils. The mayor and council are elected every four years. The last local elections in Chile took place in 2012.
The mayoral election of the municipality of Santiago on October 31, 2004 was won by Raúl Alcaíno from the right-wing party alliance Alianza por Chile with 49.04 percent, ahead of Jorge Schaulsohn from the social democratic Partido por la Democracia with 45.78 percent and Amaro Labra from the left-wing alliance "Juntos Podemos Más" 5.18 percent. Raúl Alcaíno replaced Joaquín Lavín, who had ruled the municipality of Santiago since 2000, from the right-wing Unión Demócrata Independiente in his office as mayor.
The area of responsibility of the municipality includes the areas of public transport, road construction, urban planning, sewage and sewerage, parks, waste disposal and public lighting. Likewise, the municipalities have been assigned tasks of basic medical care, education and social welfare by the Chilean central government. They are also partly responsible for the areas of sport, tourism, social housing and disaster control. In the event of social problems, the neighborhood representatives ( juntas de vecinos ) in individual districts are important contacts for the municipal administration.
Santiago has partnerships with the following cities:
Culture and sights
Music and theater
Santiago is a cultural center and attracts the most gifted artists of classical and modern music as well as dance and theater arts from all over the country. The city has numerous clubs, discos and bars. Techno , house and electronic music compete with rock and pop as well as Caribbean rhythms ( salsa , cumbia , merengue ). In addition to local films, current productions from Europe and the USA can be seen in the capital's cinemas.
Chilean and international virtuosos perform in classical music cycles and the “Teatro Municipal”, which opened in 1857, hosts an annual opera season. There are also ballet performances and classical music. The Chilean symphony orchestra plays in the concert hall of the “Teatro Universidad de Chile”. Numerous events take place in small cultural centers and off-theaters , well-known local artists play in intimate pubs, and performances by street theater groups can be seen in parks and public spaces .
Santiago has several museums. The Museo Histórico Nacional (History Museum), the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (National Museum of Fine Arts), the Museo de Artes Visuales (Museum of Fine Arts), the Museo de la Solidaridad, Salvador Allende and the Museo Chileno should be mentioned here in particular de Arte Precolombino (Chilean Museum of Pre-Columbian Art).
The latter is home to an extensive collection of art objects from Central and South America from before the European discovery . It is one of the most important museums for this cultural area. Some of the exhibits, often animal or human figures made of various materials, are more than 5000 years old. There are also mummies , clay pots and weaving . The museum opened in 1981 and goes back to the private collection of Sergio Larrain Garcia Moreno. Temporary exhibitions are also held in the museum. It also houses a library for research purposes.
The Metro de Santiago not only serves as a transport system, but is also considered a cultural attraction. The “Universidad de Chile” subway station has a large mural by Mario Toral depicting the country's history. Other works of art can be found in the underground stations “Baquedano”, “Bellas Artes”, “Santa Lucía” (Portuguese azulejos, a gift from the Lisbon Metro ), “República” and many other stations. The light was also dimmed in the “La Moneda” station. The station is only illuminated by the new illuminated murals.
The Villa Grimaldi in La Reina was an area on which opposition members of the Pinochet dictatorship were tortured from 1975 to 1988. Today the privately financed so-called Parque de la Paz (Park of Peace) is located on the less than one hectare property on Avenida José Arrieta 8200 . The concept of the memorial corresponds to the official direction of the culture of remembrance in Chile. Instead of a comprehensive memorial (there are some memorial plaques) a park and a stage for cultural events were built.
The Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos , inaugurated in 2010, is dedicated to the memory of the victims of the military dictatorship. It shows photos, letters, newspaper articles and personal mementos and is intended to keep the memory of the victims alive and to convey the importance of human rights as a global task. Changing exhibitions show current art that deals with this section of Chilean history.
Around two million people are buried in an area of 86 hectares in the central cemetery of Santiago in Recoleta commune, including many important figures in Chilean history such as Salvador Allende and artists such as Víctor Jara and Violeta Parra . There is also a memorial to the dead and the victims of the military dictatorship who have been missing to this day on the cemetery grounds.
Despite the long history, there are only a few historical buildings from the Spanish colonial era in the city, as Santiago - like the rest of the country - was regularly hit by earthquakes . The buildings from this period include the Casa Colorada (1769), the Iglesia San Francisco (1586) and the Posada del Corregidor (1750).
Another reason that there is a lack of old buildings from this period is the new wealth of Chile. At the time of the Spanish colony, the city was of little economic importance, and the boom only came after independence. Many buildings were mainly constructed in the neoclassical style.
The Catedral Metropolitana de Santiago on the central square ( Plaza de Armas ), built in 1745 according to plans by Joaquim Toesca, is also one of the sights, as is La Moneda , the classicist presidential palace, which until 1981 still showed bullets, the troops of General Pinochet during the coup against the democratically elected President Salvador Allende in 1973. The original building was built between 1784 and 1805 according to plans by the architect Joaquín Toesca. The presidential palace has been the seat of the country's government since 1846.
Other buildings on Plaza de Armas include the pastel-colored main post office ( Correo Central ), completed in 1882, and the Palacio de la Real Audiencia, built between 1804 and 1807, where the country's first government met on September 18, 1810 - today the date of the national holiday. The palace houses the Historical Museum with around 12,000 exhibits. In the southeast of the square is the blue iron structure of the Edwards department store ( Edificio Comercial Edwards ) , built in 1893, and the colonial building of "Casa Colorada", which was completed in 1769 and is the seat of the historical city museum.
The city theater ( Teatro Municipal ) is nearby . Destroyed by an earthquake in 1906, the building was constructed in 1857 according to plans by the French architect Brunet des Baines. Not far from the theater, the "Mansión Subercaseaux" (today the seat of the Banco Edwards) and the National Library (one of the largest libraries in South America). In the opposite direction, the former National Congress, the Palace of Justice and the Royal Customs House ( Palacio Real Casa de Aduana ) with the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art are grouped .
The former National Congress ( Congreso Nacional ) is near the boulevard Liberador Bernado O'Higgins. Work on the original building began in 1858 according to plans by the architect Brunet des Baines. A fire destroyed the building in 1895. It was then rebuilt and reopened in 1901 in neoclassical style. The first Chilean National Congress was formed on July 4, 1811 by resolution (1810) of the government junta in Santiago. Under the military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet (1973–1989), the Congress was ousted and reconstituted on March 11, 1990 after the dictatorship in Valparaíso ended.
The Palace of Justice ( Palacio de Tribunales ) is located at Plaza Montt . The building was built between 1907 and 1926 according to plans by the architect Emilio Doyére. It is the seat of the Supreme Court ( Corte Suprema de Justicia ). The collegiate court with 21 judges is the highest judicial authority in Chile. The judges are proposed by the judges of the Supreme Court and appointed for life by the president. The building is also the seat of the country's Supreme Court of Appeal.
Calle Bandera leads to the commercial exchange building ( Bolsa de Comercio ), which was completed in 1917 , to the “Club de la Unión” opened in 1925, to the Universidad de Chile (1872) and to the oldest church in the city, the Iglesia de San Francisco (built between 1586 and 1628) ) with the statue of the Virgin “Virgen del Socorro” by Pedro de Valdivia. To the north of the Plaza de Armas, the Paseo Puente leads to the Santo Domingo Church (1771) and the market hall ( Mercado Central ), a mighty iron structure. In the center of Santiago stands the Torre Entel , a 127.4 meter high television tower with a viewing platform. The tower was completed in 1974. It belongs to the Entel Chile telephone company and serves as their communications center.
The Costanera Center is a commercial and architectural landmark of the capital. This involves a combination of workplaces, apartments, and shopping and entertainment options. The project with a total area of 600,000 square meters includes the 300 meter high Gran Torre Costanera (tallest building in South America) and three other commercial buildings with shopping centers, shops, cinemas, an entertainment center, dining facilities, hotels, offices and luxury apartments. The building complex, comprising four office towers, will have its own motorway and subway connection. Completion was planned for 2009, but construction work was temporarily suspended due to the economic crisis, but resumed at the end of 2009, causing completion to be delayed until 2011.
On the edge of the old town is the Cerro Santa Lucía , a green park oasis on the hill on which Santiago was founded. Already in the 19th century and as part of a beautification plan for Santiago, especially in preparation for the "100th anniversary of the Chilean Republic", the fortress structures on the "Santa Lucía" were razed with the help of Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna: footpaths, a chapel on the top of the hill , built several wells and bay windows and finally planted some trees so that the hill has a park-like character today.
The Cerro San Cristóbal with the “Parque Metropolitano” is a forerunner of the Andes that protrudes into the city and can be climbed with a funicular and a cable car . Its old name was Tupahue , it was renamed by the Spanish conquerors after St. Christopher . On the mountain are the Santiago Zoo, a church, an amphitheater and a 22-meter high statue of the Virgin Mary, a symbol of the city.
The "Parque Forestal" extends on the south bank of the Río Mapocho . In the park are the "Palacio de Bellas Artes" with the Museum of Fine Arts (Museo de Bellas Artes) and the cultural center "Estacion Mapocho", where a book fair takes place every year. Another park is the "Parque Quinta Normal", in which there are several museums, playgrounds, bike paths and a pond. In O'Higgins Park, named after Chile's founding father Bernardo O'Higgins , there is the Marsfeld with Parade Street, Fantasilandia (an amusement park) and the circular “Arena Santiago” with a capacity for 12,000 spectators.
freetime and recreation
Santiago is one of the few metropolises from which the sea can be reached just as quickly as the ski areas. The seaside resorts of Viña del Mar and Valparaíso as well as numerous ski areas in the Andes are within a radius of about 100 kilometers from the city .
In the valley of the Río Maipo (Cajón del Maipo) there are several wineries, some of which have been producing wine since the 19th century. "Viña Concha y Toro" is the largest and most profitable winery in the country, "Viña Santa Carolina" is one of the oldest wineries in Chile, whose cellars were declared a national monument, and "Viña Santa Rita" was founded in 1880.
Important tributaries of the Río Maipo are the Río Yeso, the Río Colorado and the Río Mapocho . The river is especially popular with kayakers . Several picnic areas, restaurants and small settlements lie between the hills and streams of the valley. From here the national park “Monumento Natural El Morado” with the 5060 meter high “Morado” can be reached. The summit is a popular destination for trekking and mountaineering tours.
The “Lagunillas” ski center is located 16 kilometers from San José de Maipo at an altitude of 2200 meters. Winter sports can be practiced here on numerous slopes. The ski area is still relatively modestly developed. However, there are extensive development plans for the future.
Santiago is home to the best Chilean football clubs. The most successful of them is called CSD Colo-Colo . The club was founded on April 19, 1925. It has a long tradition and has played in the top division without interruption since the first Chilean league was established in 1933. The team is Chilean record champions with 26 titles and by winning the title in 1991 the only Chilean team to ever win the Copa Libertadores . The club plays its home games at the Estadio Monumental in Macul , a suburb of Santiago.
Another big club is CF Universidad de Chile . The club is one of the best-known and most successful Chilean football clubs with thirteen championship titles and three cup wins and is often referred to as U de C for short . It was founded on May 24, 1927 under the name Club Deportivo Universitario as a merger of Club Náutico and Federación Universitaria by students from the Universidad de Chile . In 1980 the university was organizationally separated and the club has been completely independent since then. The team plays in the Estadio Nacional de Chile .
The Club Deportivo Universidad Católica was founded on April 21, 1937 and is often referred to as UC or Católica for short . It consists of fourteen different departments, which are intended for the students of the university of the same name . The club is known far beyond the borders of Chile because of its soccer team. They play their home games at the Estadio San Carlos de Apoquindo . Universidad Católica is one of the most successful football clubs in the country with nine championship titles. There are over 20 appearances in the Copa Libertadores . UC achieved their greatest international success in 1983 when they lost to São Paulo FC in the final .
In addition to football, tennis and equestrian sports (especially the Chilean rodeo ) play an important role. There are competition rooms throughout the city, in which mainly the male residents of Santiago watch the horse races on screens. The "Hipódromo Chile", completed in 1904, is located in the south of the city. Horse races are held here every week.
In 2010, Santiago de Chile hosted the fifth women's world fistball championship .
Every year in January, the “Festival Internacional de Teatro Santiago a Mil”, the country's most important theater festival, takes place in Santiago. For two weeks the capital will be transformed into a big stage. National and international theater groups present their pieces to the public in numerous public places, in parks, old train stations and theaters. Since 1994 the best local pieces of the season have been performed and guest groups from abroad have been invited.
The Love Parade also takes place in January on the "Plaza Italia" . Around 100 DJs play electronic music on numerous floats and on the main stage . In February, the residents of Santiago celebrate the “Festival de Jazz en Ñuñoa” in the city's parks. At the “Santiago International Film Festival” in August, mostly films from Latin America can be seen. In September and October, many of the country's most renowned wineries present their wines at the “Vinos de Chile”.
Every year on September 18, Independence Day (Día de la Independencia), and on September 19, Army Day (Día del Ejército), the biggest festivities of the year take place. Chilean folk dances are performed, rodeos are ridden and military parades are held. The international short film festival (Santiago International Short Film Festival) is one of the most important film events in Latin America.
In Santiago there is a rich and diverse range of restaurants, cafes and bars. The cuisine of the capital region is not an offshoot of Spanish cuisine, rather there are a variety of influences - including from Germany. The German terms “Kuchen” and “Apfelstrudel” can also be found on billboards in cafes in Santiago.
Meat prepared by grilling, the so-called asado , is tradition. In addition to beef, the spicy longanizas paprika sausages are mainly used. Chicken is also popular. Due to the sunny conditions in central Chile and the volcanic soils, the region is very suitable for growing a variety of fruits.
The national dishes include the empanada , which is dumplings filled with minced meat, eggs and olives, or dumplings filled with melted cheese, and the cazuela , a hearty soup with chicken and corn on the cob. Humitas are corn porridge that is cooked in corn leaves and eaten sweet or salty. The best wine-growing region in Chile is Maipo, south of the capital.
Economy and Infrastructure
The most important companies in Chile are based in Santiago, as are many branches of foreign companies. According to a study from 2014, Santiago generated a gross domestic product of 171.44 billion US dollars in purchasing power parity . In the ranking of the economically strongest metropolitan regions worldwide, it was 71st. The GDP per capita is $ 23,929 (PEC). The GDP per capita grew by an average of 3.7% annually from 2000 to 2014. A total of 3.3 million people were employed here. The city is the undisputed political and economic center of Chile and almost 40% of the country's economic output is generated here. The country's largest stock exchange ( Bolsa de Comercio de Santiago ) is based in the city. Some international institutions, such as ECLAC ( Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean ), have their offices here.
Under Augusto Pinochet , the economy of Santiago was consistently rebuilt and deregulated according to market economy and neoliberal aspects . This development enabled the Chilean capital to develop into an economic center of South America, although the gap between rich and poor is considerable, as in other metropolises in Latin America. State corporations were largely privatized both during and after Pinochet . Due to the strong growth and stability of the Chilean economy, many multinational companies have offices in Santiago: BHP Billiton , Coca-Cola , Ford , Hewlett-Packard , IBM , Intel , JPMorgan Chase & Co. , Kodak , Microsoft , Motorola , Nestlé , Reuters , Unilever , Yahoo and many more.
Santiago is also the country's media center; the national television stations broadcast from the capital, and national newspapers such as El Mercurio , La Tercera , La Nación or Siete also appear here . In addition, the Condor , one of the world's few weekly German-language newspapers, appears in Santiago . In a study by America Economia in 2004 and 2005, Santiago was voted the most important city to do business in Latin America , ahead of Miami .
Santiago is the country's central transport hub, with Santiago de Chile airport as well as rail connections and several bus terminals, from which all major cities in the country are served.
The most common mode of transport to get to other cities is to travel with intercity buses, which are operated by different providers in different comfort classes. These classes range from buses with standard seats to the spacious Bus Cama (bed buses), which can be compared with the comfort of a business to first-class aircraft.
Rail passenger transport has been on the decline for years, which is due to the strong competition from bus companies and the poor condition of the railway systems. The military junta had no interest in the railway system. After an accident in 1990, tourist traffic on the Santiago – Valparaíso route was discontinued, and travel times were no longer competitive due to the newly built motorway 68 with a significantly shorter route. As a result, the Santiago-Mapocho train station was closed and the catenary dismantled.
There are efforts to transport more people by rail. Vehicles have been procured again since 2000, initially used locomotives, passenger coaches and railcars from the Spanish Renfe , and after 2010 new local railcars from Alstom . The route from Santiago to Puerto Montt has been partially renewed. The connection between the capital and Valparaíso , which was opened on January 4, 1884, is to have through trains again. However, the railway company EFE ( La Empresa de los Ferrocarriles del Estado ) was unable to meet its ambitious goals and is struggling with considerable technical and organizational problems. From the main train station ( Estación Central de Santiago ) there is only one route: Santiago– Rancagua - San Fernando in suburban traffic (Metrotrén, hourly) and Santiago– Talca - Chillán in long-distance traffic (TerraSur, 7 times a day). Long-distance traffic from Santiago ends in Chillán, and you have to change to the bus to continue to Concepción . Due to the construction, tourist traffic reached an all-time low in 2016 with only one daily pair of trains to Chillán and two pairs of Metrotrén trains to Rancagua.
The Santiago de Chile airport ( Aeropuerto Internacional Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez ) was opened on February 9, 1967 and on March 19, 1980 after the first commander of the Chilean air force "Fuerza Aérea de Chile" and founder of the Chilean airline LATAM Airlines , based in Santiago named. There is currently a discussion about renaming the airport to “Aeropuerto Internacional Pablo Neruda”. Pablo Neruda was the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1971 .
The Metro de Santiago , which opened in 1975, is the third oldest subway network in South America (after Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo) and connects large parts of the capital region. It has five lines with a length of 83 kilometers and 85 underground stations. The metro connects the individual districts of Santiago. There are also micro-buses, taxis and shared taxis that run on fixed routes but also without a fixed schedule. In preparation for the celebrations of the country's 200th anniversary of independence in 2010, the means of transport were renewed.
In 2007, the Transantiago, an integrated public transport system consisting of bus and subway lines, was opened. The completely redesigned line network is divided into two sub-networks: a main line network within the city, which includes bus lines and the existing underground lines, and a system of local and feeder lines. There is an integrated fare structure for both sub-networks. Payment is made with an electronic chip card . The bus operation was tendered to ten private companies. In October 2005 the new companies took over operations. More than 1,600 new low-floor buses went into operation in late 2005 and early 2006. The new line structure has been in operation since February 10, 2007, together with the integrated price system. More than 5000 buses and four metro lines are part of Transantiago.
The main street Alameda (actually: Avenida Libertador Bernardo O'Higgins ) leads in ten lanes on the edge of the old town from southwest to northeast in the direction of the administrative and business district Providencia . Important inner-city highways are the Autopista Central (north – south), the Autopista Costanera Norte (east – west), the Autopista Vespucio Norte Express (north east – north west) and the Autopista Vespucio Sur (south east – south west). The use of the motorways is usually chargeable. The toll varies according to the type of vehicle and the length of the route. The earthquake at the end of February 2010 caused considerable damage to urban motorway structures, including damage to vehicles and people.
The Santiago – Puerto Montt railway line was expanded to four tracks after 2010 between Santiago and Nos. Since March 2017 there has been a new S-Bahn operation "Metrotrén Nos" on this section. On the route towards Cartagena, a S-Bahn-like operation is also to begin in 2017 as far as Melipilla.
Television is the most important source of information for the population of Santiago. The most important television channels are the state-run Televisión-Nacional-de-Chile -Programme, the channel Canal 13 of the Catholic University of Universidad Católica and the private channel Megavisión .
The press landscape in the capital region is largely dominated by two corporations, the Mercurio and COPESA groups , after a number of publications from the political center-left spectrum were unable to stay on the market after the decline in enthusiasm for politics at the time of speech democratization. The most important newspapers of the two press groups are the venerable El Mercurio , a newspaper that can be compared to the FAZ in terms of quality and political orientation and is part of the quasi-obligatory reading of the population, and La Tercera . Other newspapers are the communist party's house paper, El Siglo , and the left-wing but non-party journal Punto Final .
Important weekly magazines are Ercilla and Qué Pasa . There is also the German-language weekly newspaper Cóndor .
The city is home to numerous universities, colleges and technical schools, research institutions and libraries. The Universidad de Chile is the largest university in Chile and one of the oldest on the American continent. The roots of the university go back to 1622, when the first university in Chile was founded on August 19th under the name of Santo Tomás de Aquino . On 28 July 1738 was in honor of King Philip V of Spain in Real Universidad de San Felipe renamed. It is popularly known as Casa de Bello (Spanish: Bello's house - after its first rector , Andrés Bello ). On April 17, 1839, after Chile gained independence from its mother country, the Kingdom of Spain , the university officially became the Universidad de Chile , and opened on September 17, 1843.
The Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC) was founded on June 21, 1888. On February 11, 1930, the university was founded by decree by Pope Pius XI. appointed to a Pontifical University ; In 1931 it was fully recognized by the Chilean government. Joaquín Larraín Gandarillas (1822-1897), Archbishop of Anazarba, was the founder and first rector of the PUC. The Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile is rated as one of the best universities in Chile. In 2006, 69 of the top 100 high school graduates named the PUC as their first preference. The PUC is a modern university; the San Joaquin campus has some contemporary buildings and also offers plenty of green spaces and sports facilities.
Other important universities are located in Santiago: Universidad de Santiago de Chile, Universidad Metropolitana de Ciencias de la Educación, Universidad Tecnológica Metropolitana, Universidad Academia de Humanismo Cristiano, Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, Universidad Alberto Hurtado, Universidad Bernardo O'Higgins, Universidad Bolivariana, Universidad Católica Raúl Silva Henríquez, Universidad Central de Chile , Universidad de Artes y Ciencias Sociales and Universidad de Artes, Ciencias y Comunicación.
Other important universities are: Universidad de Ciencias de la Informática, Universidad de Las Américas, Universidad de Los Andes, Universidad del Desarrollo, Universidad del Pacífico, University of Diego Portales , Universidad Finis Terrae, Universidad Gabriela Mistral, Universidad Iberoamericana de Ciencias y Tecnología, Universidad Internacional SEK, Universidad La República, Universidad Mariano Egaña, Universidad Mayor, Universidad Miguel de Cervantes, Universidad Nacional Andrés Bello, Universidad Santo Tomás and Universidad Tecnológica de Chile. The postgraduate and continuing education center of Heidelberg University (Ruprecht Karl University) functions as a kind of embassy for European universities .
sons and daughters of the town
Santiago de Chile is the birthplace of many famous people.
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- see data and figures from "Basic data"
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- Metro de Santiago: Official website
- Transantiago: Official website
- Image of the city motorway