By: Brasil Prime Design
A city facing the future
The biggest city in the South region of Brazil, is also the birth place of Brasil Prime Design
Curitiba is located in the State of Parana, South region of Brazil, 249 miles from the city of São Paulo and almost 60 miles from The Port of Paranagua, one of the main channels of Brazilian products for export. The city is the second largest car manufacturer in the country, and it’s economy is based on industry and commerce and sectors services. For that reason, Curitiba is considered by many specialists of the financial sector to be the best location for investors in Brazil.
The annual income of the municipality is approximately 1.6 billion dollars, which makes this city the greatest and most important capital of the South region of Brazil. According to the last census in 2004, Curitiba and its metropolitan region have nearly 3,172,357 inhabitants.
At the moment, the city receives more than two million tourists every year. Most arrive via Afonso Pena International Airport, where almost sixty thousand airplanes land annually. In Curitiba, there are nearly 50 stage theaters and cultural spaces, 160 hotels (capacity for 16,000 beds), 10 museums, 15 movie theaters, 9 great shopping centers and also five samba schools that parade in the local Carnival.
Curitiba in numbers
The city has approximately 62 miles of bike routes, used by around 30 thousand bikers daily. On the city streets, there are almost one million vehicles, of which 2,253 are taxis. They are all painted orange. To service all these vehicles, there are more than 355 gas stations throughout the city. With so many cars, nearly 500,000 tickets are issued yearly, even though there are more than 40,000 existing traffic signs in all the city.
There are nearly 16,000 public pay-phones distributed all over the 75 existing neighborhoods. There are about 74,000 residential telephones, while broadband internet users are about 123,000. There are 16 public skating parks, nearly 900 public squares or plazas, and 30 public parks.
Origins of the word Curitiba
The word “Curitiba” comes from the Indian language Guarani: kur yt yba, meaning “great amount of pine trees.” The Guaranis were natives who originally inhabited the region. Many years ago, the land where Curitiba lies on presently, had a great amount of Araucaria angustipholia, the famous “Pinheiro-do-Parana.” Its seed is “pinhão,” a source of protein that is still consumed by Paranaenses.
The history of Curitiba began on March 29th, 1693, when the first Council and the Village were established by the Portuguese Command of that time. The Village was founded as “Nossa Senhora da Luz dos Pinhais;” and later it was renamed Curitiba.
Far from the greatest cities and forgotten by the governors of the “Captainship of Sao Paulo,” Curtiba experienced an economic depression. Prosperity would only come in 1812, with the “troperos.” The city was an important strategic point that connected Viamão to São Paulo and Minas Gerais. After that, the town saw increasing commerce with the passage of those explorers. Small business, stores and offices related to cattle transportation arose. Along with growth, in 1853 the emancipation of Paraná was achieved and Curitiba became the state capital.
Heading into the Future
Like many other metropolis, Curitiba also has its urban and social problems, such as homelessness and pollution of the rivers and streams that cross the city. Nevertheless, in the past 40 years, green spaces have increased about 167 feet per inhabitant, one of the greatest national averages. The urban perimeter already contains 300,000 planted trees, some of which are preserved as a natural treasure.
All those factors made Curitiba a prosperous city, with a penchant for tourism and great businesses. According to a survey from Americas Economy Magazine published in a special edition “Cities 2006” titled “The Innovative City,” Curitiba is ranked ahead of important capitals like Mexico City, Buenos Aires and Brasilia, achieving fifth place. In making its selection, the magazine considered several main Latin American economies or those that have economic and commercial prominence on the continent. The only cities that come before the Paranaense capital are Sao Paulo in first place; Santiago, Chile in second; Monterrey, Mexico in third and Miami rounding out the fourth place.