Puebla, Puebla

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Puebla is the name of both a state in Mexico and that state's capital city. This article is about the city. For the state, see: state of Puebla.
City of Puebla
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Image:Escudopuebla.jpg


Coat of arms
Motto: Unidos en el Tiempo, en el Esfuerzo,
en la Justicia y en la Esperanza
("United in Time, Strength, Justice and Hope")
Foundation date April 16, 1531
Population 1.8 million,
Metro area: 2.2 million
Altitude 2160 meters
Latitude 19.05° North
Longitude 98.22° West
UTC –6 / –5 hours (Central )
Telephone area code +52 (Country) 222 (City)
Airport Name and Code Hermanos Serdán (PBC)
Mayor (alcalde) Enrique Doger (2005-2008)
Sources: INEGI (http://www.inegi.gob.mx), Enciclopedia de los Municipios de México (http://www.e-local.gob.mx/wb2/)


The city of Puebla – known more formally as "Heróica Puebla de Zaragoza" or less formally as "La Angelópolis" or "Puebla de los Ángeles" – is the capital and largest city of the Mexican state of the same name, and the fourth largest city in Mexico. It is a vibrant city where the old and the new meet: high-tech industries and talavera artisans' handicraft shops; recently built skyscrapers and majestic 400-year old colonial architecture.

Puebla is located in the valley of the same name, surrounded by volcanoes and snow-capped mountains, just over 110 km south-east of Mexico City. It has an estimated population of 1,800,000 people, and its metropolitan area reaches a population of 2,200,000 in contiguous towns and sections.

Contents

Architecture

The historic center of the city still contains much Spanish Colonial architecture and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Some of the historical buildings have been impressively restored; others, however, are in an abject state of disrepair.

Of all the colonial buildings, the most impressive are without any doubt the Cathedral, which is said to be the biggest in Latin America, in a somewhat mixed neoclassical style; the Rosario Chapel, all covered with gold, a dramatic example of Mexican baroque.

Brief History

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City of Puebla

The city of Puebla was founded as "La Puebla de los Ángeles" or "La Angelópolis" on April 16, 1531. It was the first city in central Mexico founded by the Spanish conquistadors that was not built upon the ruins of a conquered Amerindian settlement. Its strategic location, half-way from the port of Veracruz to Mexico City, made it the second most important city during the colonial period. It was in this period that Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, playwright, writer, poet and nun lived a prolific life, until her confrontation with the Bishop of Puebla.

Four decades after Mexico's independence, General Ignacio Zaragoza's army defeated French expeditionary forces near Puebla on May 5, 1862, in the Battle of Puebla. It was after this battle that the name of the city was changed to Heróica Puebla de Zaragoza.

In Puebla the folkloric Mexican women's dress named China Poblana was created.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries a considerable number of European immigrants came to the city, mainly from Germany, Italy and Spain. Nowadays, the "Colonia Humboldt" neighborhood shows the influence of the Germans in the city's architecture, and in the town of Chipilo, now absorbed by the metropolitan area of the city, people still speak the Italian Venet dialect of their great-grandparents.

Economy

Puebla is an industrial city, mainly in the textile sector. Puebla is also home to the Mexican headquarters and main manufacturing site of Volkswagen; the only site where the new VW Beetle and Jetta are produced. Many other German and French manufacturing companies are operating in the city, most of them outsourcers for VW.

Since 2003 Puebla has served as the interim headquarters of the Free Trade Area of the Americas. It has also submitted its candidacy to serve as the permanent headquarters once the FTAA is up and running.

Education

With more than 20 universities, Puebla is the second city in Mexico in number of universities (Mexico City being the first). Many of the top universities in the country are located in its metropolitan area, like the Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Puebla (BUAP), the state's university, the Universidad de las Américas, Puebla (UDLAP) and the Tecnológico de Monterrey (ITESM) campus Puebla. Both UDLAP and ITESM are usually ranked among the highest in the country and both belong to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) in the United States. Other important academic institutions are the Universidad Iberoamericana (UIA)campus Puebla and the Universidad Popular Autónoma del Estado de Puebla (UPAEP)which was founded in the 70´s due to a series of problems with the BUAP

Sports

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Cuauhtémoc Soccer Stadium

Puebla has two professional soccer teams, "La Franja" and "Lobos BUAP", both in the minor divisions of the league. The biggest soccer stadium in the city, "Cuauhtémoc", which seats 45,000, was built in 1968 as a second soccer field for the 1968 Olympic Games. Matches for the 1970 and Template:Wcs were also played in the Cuauhtémoc Stadium.

Puebla has two professional baseball teams, "Pericos" and "Tigres". Puebla, along with Monterrey, have popular baseball teams in the Mexican League.

Puebla, through the conurbated area of Cholula, has one professional American football team, the "Aztecas" of the Universidad de las Américas. The Aztecas have won the championship three times since the creation of the the Conference of the Mexican College Football Organization, ONEFA.

Cuisine

Puebla's cuisine, "Cocina Poblana" is famous all around Mexico. Puebla is considered the home of mole, a rich, spicy sauce containing chocolate, cinnamon and nuts, as well as different types of hot peppers. Served with chicken, mole has become the most renowned dish of Puebla's cuisine. "Camote", sweet potatoes cooked in a stove are also a delicacy. "Rompope" or alcohol based eggnog is also a staple, created many years ago by Puebla's Nuns. Chiles en Nogada, a superb dish of stuffed chillies with meat, fruits and topped with fresh walnut sauce is prepared only on special occasions, "Los dulces de Santa Clara", crystallized fruits, camotes and milk candies are the delight of visitors with a sweet tooth. Plans are in progress to diffuse this internationally.

Tourist attractions

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Puebla's Zócalo

Important locations include "La Capilla del Rosario" a chapel inlaid with gold and milk, "El Barrio del Artista" where exquisite arts are produced and the bustling "El Centro y Zócalo" where the centuries old Cathedral and the "Palacio Municipal" remain the heart of the city. Red double-decker buses, known as "turibuses", give tourists an opportunity to enjoy the city's architecture, museums and monuments located at the historical downtown. Another tourist attraction is the zoo, "Africam Safari", where animals are not caged, but roam in liberty, while visitors drive through their "habitat" in their cars. Finally, worth visiting is the pyramid of Cholula, a city within the metropolitan area of Puebla. Cholula was one of the most important cities during the Aztec empire, and its pyramid is the largest in the world. Local lore tells of 365 churches used to spread out across the city. The actual number today is probably half of that; still an impressive number for a city with less than 100,000 inhabitants.

Coat of Arms

The coat of arms has a round-heart form with five golden towers in its center, and a river below. Two angels are located over the towers, one to the left and one two the right. The letters KV make reference to Charles V, King of Spain and Holy Roman Emperor, and written around the coat of arms is Psalm 90:2 in Latin: "Angelis suis Deus mandavit de te ut custodiant te in omnibus viis tuis" (And the Lord send His angels to guard you in all your ways). The coat of arms makes reference to the legend of the foundation of the city. According to the legend, angels descended, sketched the city and put the heavy bells in the towers of the cathedral.

External links

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Government

Universities and institutions

Sports

ca: Puebla da:Puebla (by) de:Puebla (Stadt) fr:Puebla de Los Angeles es:Puebla (ciudad) nl: Puebla

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