Theme Week Honduras – San Pedro Sula

Wednesday, 23 June 2021 - 12:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
Reading Time:  11 minutes

Municipal Palace © Steven Craig/cc-by-sa-3.0

Municipal Palace © Steven Craig/cc-by-sa-3.0

San Pedro Sula is the capital of Cortés Department, Honduras. It is located in the northwest corner of the country in the Sula Valley, about 50 kilometers (31 miles) south of Puerto Cortés on the Caribbean Sea. With a population of 671,460 in the central urban area (2020 calculation) and a population of 1,445,598 in its metropolitan area in 2020, it is the nation’s primary industrial center and second largest city after the capital Tegucigalpa.

Before the arrival of the Spanish, the Sula Valley was home to approximately 50,000 native inhabitants. The area that is home to the modern city served as a local trade hub for the Mayan and Aztec civilizations. The Spanish conquest brought about a demographic collapse from which the native population would never recover. On 27 June 1536, Don Pedro de Alvarado founded a Spanish town beside the Indian settlement of Choloma, with the name of Villa de Señor San Pedro de Puerto Caballos (modern San Pedro Sula). The new town had 35 Spanish citizens, and Alvarado allocated 200 of his slaves to help build the new town and work the surrounding fields. He sent out expeditions into outlying regions to secure the new town, extend the area of Spanish domination, and commandeer supplies. Alvarado annulled all encomienda rights established in the area under Andres de Cerezeda, and reassigned the villages to the citizens of San Pedro. The new settlement barely survived the colonial period. In 1601, the Spanish government declared Santo Tomás as the official port for the Central American colonies; this move diverted exports from Puerto Cortés and resulted in an economic decline that would last through the XVII century. Additionally, San Pedro Sula was left exposed to raids by pirates and French, Dutch, and English mercenaries. By the mid-18th century, the Spanish government decided to build a number of coastal fortresses to curb English attacks. One of these fortresses, the Fortaleza de San Fernando, was built in Omoa, less than 50 miles from San Pedro Sula. The subsequent increase in trade supported an increase in population from 70 inhabitants in 1714 to 357 in 1789. Post-independence San Pedro Sula remained an impoverished village, dependent on trade between Omoa and the country’s interior. In 1875, Frank Frye, the American consul in the Bay Islands, reported a population of 1200. The city benefitted from the growth of the banana trade in the 1870s and 1880s and formed a close relationship with US-based shipper and railroad entrepreneur Samuel Zemurray‘s Cuyamel Fruit Company, and the construction of the Interoceanic Railroad between 1869 and 1874 which connected the city to the coast at Puerto Cortés. Zemurray worked closely with local elites who invested in subsidiary enterprises and thus shaped the way politically for Cuyamel to establish itself and pay very few taxes.

In 2013, fifteen years after the effects of Hurricane Mitch, Honduras is one of the poorest countries in Latin America; around San Pedro Sula, banana production has not fully recovered, and “manufacturing has all but dried up.” The problems are exacerbated by organized gangs, whose rules prevent residents from safely leaving gang-controlled neighborhoods such as Chamelecón for jobs in other parts of town. In 2000, then-Mayor Roberto Larios Silva said “San Pedro Sula is where the economic development of the country is concentrated via the city’s industrial, commercial, and financial development.” The then-manager of Hotel Copantl attributed its growth in business-related tourism …[to] the maquila (apparel manufacturing) industry. As of 2011, San Pedro Sula generated two-thirds of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

San Pedro Sula was the “murder capital of the world” until early 2016 when Caracas, Venezuela, surpassed its homicide rate. Since the 2009 Honduran military coup “unemployment and underemployment rates have doubled while the number of people living in extreme poverty has skyrocketed.” In 2013, the city had 187 homicides per 100,000 residents. This surpassed Ciudad Juarez, Mexico‘s rate of 148 killings per 100,000, or an average of about three homicides per day; Ciudad Juarez had previously topped the list for three consecutive years. Both cities are major operational and strategic distribution points in the illegal drug trade, particularly to the United States, and have significant gang activity. In response, authorities launched Operation Lightning, saturating violence hotspots with police and soldiers. Meanwhile, arms trafficking has flooded the country, with just under 70% of all firearms being illegal. 83% of homicides in the city involve firearms. According to the Los Angeles Times, “the homicide rate is stoked by the rivalry of the brutal street gangs, mostly descendants of gangs formed in Los Angeles and deported to Central America in the 1990s, including Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) and the 18th Street gang. Their ranks are fed by the disastrous economy of Honduras, and emboldened more recently by alliances with Mexican drug traffickers moving cocaine through the country.” Crime and economic stress have led to the migration of large numbers of unaccompanied minors to the US border. The latest data from the CBP shows San Pedro Sula as the major source for Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC) migrating from Honduras.

San Pedro Sula Cathedral © flickr.com - Micah MacAllen/cc-by-sa-2.0 © El gran tegus/cc-by-sa-4.0 © Jessica Towne © JVC3ETA/cc-by-sa-4.0 Municipal Palace © Steven Craig/cc-by-sa-3.0 Downtown © Gervaldez/cc-by-sa-4.0
<
>
San Pedro Sula Cathedral © flickr.com - Micah MacAllen/cc-by-sa-2.0
San Pedro Sula, as most cities built under the Spanish colonial period, is divided in quadrants. Avenues in the city run from north to south and streets run from east to west. First Street and First Avenue mark the “center of the city” and effectively divide it into four major quadrants NW, NE, SW and SE.

Barrio El Benque, the business district, is just to the west and south of the center, and other neighborhoods in the suroeste include Barrio Paz Barahona, Barrio La Guardia, Colonia Altamira, Colonia Mesetas, Barrio Río de Piedras, Barrio Suyapa (from 12 Avenida S out to Avenida Circunvalación, from 7 Calle S to 10 Calles S), Colonia Hernandez, Barrio Prado Alto, and Colonia El Chamelecón. The latter includes area from 23 Avenida S west to 27 Avenida S, from 1 Calle (named Bulevar Los Próceres there) south to 5 Calle S0. To the south of Colonia El Chamelecón are Colonia Dubón, Colonia Figueroa, Colonia Trejo (from 10 Calle S to 12 Calle S, from about Avenida Circunvalación to 25 Avenida S, including the Consulate of Nicaragua), Colonia Altamira, and Colonia Altiplano. Colonia Las Mesetas runs from 12 Calle S to 14 Calle S, from 21 Avenida A (S) to past 24 Avenida S.

Barrio Guamilito is just to the west and north of the center. Noroeste neighborhoods include Colonia Moderna (from 1 Calle to 5 Calle NO, from Avendia Circunvalación to the river beyond 24 Avenida), Colonia La Mora (from 5 Calle NO to 7 Calle NO, from Avendia Circunvalación to the río beyond 24 Avenida), Colonia Zeron, the Colonia Columbia by the Universidad de San Pedro Sula, Barrio La Cervecería and Barrio Guadalupe. Across the river along which 24 Avenida runs is Colonia Juan Lindo and Colonia Jardines Del Valle. From the river past 24 Avenida, north to 25 Calle and west to 12 Avenida, is Colonia Universidad. Universidad de San Pedro Sula is to its south, across the river. West of Colonia Universidad is Colonia Country, a small neighborhood including the Academia Americana, and Colonia Villas del Sol, which runs from Boulevard Mackey west to include Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Honduras en el Valle de Sula, and goes north to Río Bermejo but does not cross it. Just past the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Honduras en el Valle de Sula, and spanning the Río Bermejo, is Colonia El Pedregal, which has residential high-rises. Further out, north across the Río Bermejo, running to the edge of the city, and with calles (streets) renumbering from 1 up, are Colonia Los Alpes and Rancho El Coco and Residencial Los Cedros and Colonia La Tara. Far to the north is Colonia Fesitranh.

Barrio Las Acacias is just to the north of center. Nor-Este neighborhoods include Barrio San Cristobal, Villa Florencia, Colonia Ideal, Barrio Morazán, Colonia Modelo, and further out Colonia Bográn, Colonia El Carmen, and Colonia Los Laureles.

Includes the road to the airport, Aeropuerto Internacional Ramon Villeda Morales and to the city of La Lima. Southeast neighborhoods include Barrio Medina (11 Calle SE to Avenida Juan Pablo II, 4 Avenida SO to 10 Avenida SE), Colonia La Aurora (defined by 7 Calle SE to 10 Calle SE, and 14 Avenida SE to Segundo Anilo (approximately where 18 Avenida would be), Barrio Cabañas, Barrio La Navidad, San Pedro, Barrio Las Palmas, Barrio San Luís, Colonia La Unión, Barrio La Paz. Farther out: Colonia Rivera Hernández, San Cristobal.

Here you can find the complete Overview of all Theme Weeks.

Read more on LonelyPlanet.com – San Pedro Sula, Wikitravel San Pedro Sula, Wikivoyage San Pedro Sula and Wikipedia San Pedro Sula. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




Recommended posts:

Share this post: (Please note data protection regulations before using buttons)

Matamata in New Zealand

Matamata in New Zealand

[caption id="attachment_212631" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Hobbiton sign in Matamata © Michael Goetter/cc-by-sa-2.5[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Matamata is a town in the Waikato region of New Zealand's North Island. It is located near the base of the Kaimai Ranges, and is a thriving farming area known for Thoroughbred horse breeding and training pursuits. It is part of the Matamata-Piako District, which takes in the surrounding rural areas as well as Morrinsville and Te Aroha. State Highway 27 and the Kinleith Branch railwa...

[ read more ]

Pattonville in Baden-Württemberg

Pattonville in Baden-Württemberg

[caption id="attachment_153841" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Pattonville © Pluds/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Pattonville is a German neighborhood with the unusual distinction of being a former US Military installation, as few US installations returned to German control have been maintained in their former form. Pattonville was a large housing area built and maintained by the United States Army north of Stuttgart during the Cold War as part of the Stuttgart Military Community. The community was named for W...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Taiwan - Taichung

Theme Week Taiwan - Taichung

[caption id="attachment_191998" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Night Market © AngMoKio/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Taichung, officially known as Taichung City, is a special municipality located in central Taiwan. Taichung has a population of approximately 2.8 million people and is Taiwan's second most populous city since July 2017. It serves as the core of the Taichung–Changhua metropolitan area, which is the second largest metropolitan area of Taiwan. The current city was formed when Taichung County merged with ...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Moscow - The House on the Embankment

Theme Week Moscow - The House on the Embankment

[caption id="attachment_154142" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Moscow river with House on the Embankment and Kremlin in the background © flickr.com - longmandancer@btopenworld.com[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"] The House on the Embankment (Russian: Дом на набережной) is a block-wide apartment house in downtown Moscow, Russia. It faces Bersenevskaya Embankment on one side and Serafimovicha Street on the other side. It was completed in 1931 as the Government Building, a residence of Soviet elite. It was designed by ...

[ read more ]

European Heritage Label

European Heritage Label

[caption id="attachment_233989" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Andrijana F/cc-by-sa-4.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The European Heritage Label is a recognition awarded by the European Union to buildings, documents, museums, archives, monuments or events which are seen as milestones in the creation of today's Europe. The program is managed by the European Commission. The European Heritage Label started as an intergovernmental initiative between 17 individual EU member states during a meeting in Granada, Spain on 28 Ap...

[ read more ]

Chapel of Reconciliation in Berlin

Chapel of Reconciliation in Berlin

[caption id="attachment_215419" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Immanuel Giel[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Chapel of Reconciliation (German: Kapelle der Versöhnung) is a place of worship in Berlin, Germany. It stands on the site of the old Church of Reconciliation (German: Versöhnungskirche), on Bernauer Strasse in the Mitte district. The church was completed in 1894 as an imposing brick-built building by the architect Gotthilf Ludwig Möckel, in the Gothic revival style. It sustained some damage in the Second World War, ...

[ read more ]

Koenigssee in southeast Bavaria: Holidays in a real-existing postcard

Koenigssee in southeast Bavaria: Holidays in a real-existing postcard

[caption id="attachment_151823" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Boathouses and Villa Beust at dusk © Bobak Ha'Eri/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Königssee is a natural lake in the extreme southeast Berchtesgadener Land district of the German state of Bavaria, near the border to Austria. Most of the lake is within the Berchtesgaden National Park. Situated within the Berchtesgaden Alps in the municipality of Schönau am Königsee, just south of Berchtesgaden and the Austrian city of Salzburg, the Königssee ...

[ read more ]

Ascension Island

Ascension Island

[caption id="attachment_231497" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Royal Marine barracks in former Royal Dockland in Georgetown © JERRYE & ROY KLOTZ MD/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Ascension Island is an isolated volcanic island, 7°56′ south of the Equator in the South Atlantic Ocean. It is about 1,000 miles (1,600 km) from the coast of Africa and 1,400 miles (2,300 km) from the coast of South America. It is governed as part of the British Overseas Territory of Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, of which t...

[ read more ]

The Bronx in New York City

The Bronx in New York City

[caption id="attachment_236811" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Park Plaza Apartments © Jim.henderson[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Bronx is a borough of New York City, coextensive with Bronx County, in the U.S. state of New York. It is south of Westchester County; north and east of the New York City borough of Manhattan, across the Harlem River; and north of the New York City borough of Queens, across the East River. The Bronx has a land area of 42 square miles (109 km²) and a population of 1,472,654 in the 2020 census. If e...

[ read more ]

Vimmerby, Astrid Lindgren's World

Vimmerby, Astrid Lindgren's World

[caption id="attachment_151098" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Rotsee/cc-by-sa-4.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Vimmerby is a city and the seat of Vimmerby Municipality in Kalmar County with 8,000 inhabitants. Stångån is a small river running through the city. Vimmerby had its charter as early as the fourteenth century. The main street, Storgatan, still has the shape in which it was built in the medieval time. There are also many old wooden houses in the city. Vimmerby is currently a tourist attraction due to histori...

[ read more ]

Return to TopReturn to Top
Paul Klee by Hugo Erfurth in 1927
Portrait: Paul Klee, painter and graphic artist

Paul Klee was a Swiss-born German artist. His highly individual style was influenced by movements in art that included expressionism,...

Comayagua Cathedral © Einkimadu/cc-by-sa-4.0
Theme Week Honduras – Comayagua

Comayagua is a city and municipality in Honduras, some 80 kilometres (50 miles) northwest of Tegucigalpa on the highway to...

© Anagoria/cc-by-3.0
Longmen Grottoes in China

The Longmen Grottoes or Longmen Caves are some of the finest examples of Chinese Buddhist art. Housing tens of thousands...

Schließen