Argentina Transportation - History

Argentina Transportation - History

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ARGENTINA Transportation

1,381 (2006)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 154
over 3,047 m: 4
2,438 to 3,047 m: 26
1,524 to 2,437 m: 65
914 to 1,523 m: 50
under 914 m: 9 (2006)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 1,227
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 49
914 to 1,523 m: 587
under 914 m: 587 (2006)
gas 29,804 km; liquid petroleum gas 41 km; oil 10,373 km; refined products 8,540 km; unknown (oil/water) 13 km (2006)
total: 31,902 km
broad gauge: 20,858 km 1.676-m gauge (141 km electrified)
standard gauge: 2,885 km 1.435-m gauge (26 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 7,922 km 1.000-m gauge; 237 km 0.750-m gauge (2005)
total: 229,144 km
paved: 68,809 km (including 734 km of expressways)
unpaved: 160,335 km (2004)
11,000 km (2005)
Merchant marine:
total: 41 ships (1000 GRT or over) 435,969 GRT/707,767 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 2, cargo 10, chemical tanker 1, passenger 1, passenger/cargo 3, petroleum tanker 21, refrigerated cargo 2, roll on/roll off 1
foreign-owned: 11 (Chile 6, UK 4, Uruguay 1)
registered in other countries: 24 (Bolivia 1, Chile 1, Liberia 7, Panama 9, Paraguay 3, Uruguay 3) (2006)
Ports and terminals:
Bahia Blanca, Buenos Aires, Concepcion del Uruguay, La Plata, Punta Colorada, Rosario, San Lorenzo-San Martin, San Nicolas

Argentina Transportation - History

In the 18th century, transportation was primitive by today's standards. The majority of the time if you wanted to go anywhere you either walked or rode a horse on trails or rough roads. Most folks could not afford carriages or wagons. People traveled from one country to the next by small wooden ships or stagecoach services.

Argentina - Infrastructure, power, and communications

Argentina has a good infrastructure system in comparison with other Latin American nations, but many areas need significant improvement. The nation has 215,434 kilometers (133,870 miles) of roads, including 734 kilometers (456 miles) of expressways or highways, but only 63,553 kilometers (39,492 miles) of the country's roads are paved. Argentina has been the recipient of a number of aid packages to improve infrastructure. For instance, the United States has provided US$7 million and the World Bank provided US$450 million for highway construction. There is an extensive rail system that transports both freight and passengers around Argentina, with a total of 38,326 kilometers (23,816 miles) of track.

Argentina has 10,950 kilometers (6,804 miles) of navigable waterways. However, most of the country's major ports are located on the Atlantic coast, and little freight is transported along the inland waterways. The nation's main ports include Bahia Blanca, Buenos Aires, Comodoro Rivadavia, La Plata, and Mar La Plata (all located on the Atlantic Coast). Inland river ports include Rosario and Santa Fe, while the port of Ushuaia is located in the extreme southern tip of the nation near Cape Horn where the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans meet. Argentina has a small merchant marine of 26 ships with more than 1,000 tons of gross weight. This includes 11 petroleum tankers. In order to provide fuels to inland areas and ship resources to ports for export, there is a broad pipeline system. There are 4,090 kilometers (2,542 miles) of crude oil pipelines, 2,900 kilometers (1,802 miles) for other petroleum products, and 9,918 kilometers (6,163 miles) of natural gas pipelines.

Buenos Aires has an extensive system of public transportation, including subways and buses, but most smaller cities and towns in Argentina have limited transportation resources. Most major cities are connected by passenger railways and there is an extensive commuter rail system in the greater Buenos Aires metropolitan area.

There are 1,359 airports in Argentina, although only 142 have paved runways. Buenos Aires has 2 major airports. The first, Ezeiza International Airport, is the main point of arrival and departure for most international flights. Most domestic or regional flights, including those to Brazil, Uruguay, and Paraguay originate from the second major airport in Buenos Aires, Aeroparque Jorge Newbery. Most major international air carriers offer service to Buenos Aires, including the U.S. carriers United and American Airlines. Argentina's national airline is Aerolineas Argentinas. The government is involved in a program to privatize airports. Thus far, 33 major airports have been turned over to private companies to operate.

Argentina has a telephone density of about 20 private phones per 100 people. There are also some 12,000 public telephones. Deregulation of the telecommunications industry is ongoing, and service and infrastructure

Country Newspapers Radios TV Sets a Cable subscribers a Mobile Phones a Fax Machines a Personal Computers a Internet Hosts b Internet Users b
1996 1997 1998 1998 1998 1998 1998 1999 1999
Argentina 123 681 289 163.1 78 2.0 44.3 27.85 900
United States 215 2,146 847 244.3 256 78.4 458.6 1,508.77 74,100
Brazil 40 444 316 16.3 47 3.1 30.1 18.45 3,500
Chile 98 354 232 44.8 65 2.7 48.2 21.45 700
a Data are from International Telecommunication Union, World Telecommunication Development Report 1999 and are per 1,000 people.
b Data are from the Internet Software Consortium ( ) and are per 10,000 people.
SOURCE: World Bank. World Development Indicators 2000.

have improved dramatically. Companies such as AT&T, MCI, and Sprint can now provide long-distance service to a limited degree. There are currently 40 earth stations that support the telephone system's microwave relay complex and 3 earth satellite stations. Nonetheless, many areas of the country experience telephone outages, particularly after heavy storms. There are also continuing restrictions on satellite services. The cable television system has also expanded and now includes a number of international channels such as CNN International, CNN Espanol, and MTV, as well as channels from Brazil, France, Germany, and Italy. Initiatives to increase Internet usage have broadened access and in 1999 there were 47 Internet service providers. By 2000, about 10 percent of the adult population used cellular phones (there are about 2.5 million mobile phones in use).

In 1998, total electric production was 75,237 kilowatt-hours (kWh). Fossil fuels provided 42.71 percent of production while hydroelectric sources provided 47.55 percent and nuclear power 9.47 percent. The electric industry in Argentina was deregulated in 1991, and most power distribution sources have now been privatized, although a small number remain under government control. Behind Venezuela, Argentina has the second-largest proven reserves of natural gas in South America with 24 trillion cubic feet. The country also has significant oil reserves (2.8 billion barrels) and produces about 900,000 barrels of crude oil per day.

History and Ethnic Relations

Emergence of the Nation. During the Spanish conquest the territory was occupied by different colonizing attempts. Two of these attempts originated in already established Latin-American colonial centers with one more directly connected to Spain. These early forms of occupation reflected the development of relatively economically and culturally distinct regions, conditioned by the contributions made by indigenous groups and the constraints set by very different environments. Beginning with the early years of the conquest, the majority of the regions maintained strong ties with important Latin American colonial centers, while what came to be known as the Littoral and the Pampas in the east of the territory were in more direct contact with Spain, and consequently, Europe.

By the end of the Spanish Empire, in the late eighteenth century, the Bourbon reforms marked the fate of some regions until today. By creating the Viceroyalty of the Rio de la Plata, and by choosing Buenos Aires as the residence of its authorities, royal authorities acknowledged a process already under way. Buenos Aires was the center of intense smuggling, an activity that flourished as a challenge to the rigid crown regulations on imports. Slaves entered through the Rio de la Plata ports, and hides and tallow were exported from Buenos Aires. Subsequent Bourbon reforms allowed free trade from Buenos Aires. These changes had an extraordinary impact in the configuration of the future national space. The major beneficiary was the city and the neighboring interior. Buenos Aires experienced significant construction and technological improvements. It became the most important commercial and cultural center in South America. Enlightened ideas also came from Europe and influenced the thinking of urban elites, who gradually championed ideas of autonomy and economic liberalism. Most of the interior provinces started an irreversible process of economic decline, intensified after independence because commercial routes and connections were altered. Local craft industries which had developed to supply the demands of the colonial regional markets could no longer compete with the imported goods entering through the port of Buenos Aires.

While independence from Spain was achieved in 1816, Argentina did not become a unified nation until 1880. Confrontations between those who wanted greater regional autonomy (federalists) and those who wanted more centralized forms of government (unitarians) characterized the early post-independence years. Argentine history, mainly written by the victorious liberal elite sectors, refers to these schisms in Argentine society as civilization and barbarism—the modern Europeanized sectors against a traditional rural society characterized as violent, primitive, and vagrant. Some analysts assert that this antimony is misleading because it masks the continuity in the maintenance of power in the hands of landed elites until well into the twentieth century. During the nineteenth century, local identities prevailed, and men were generally recruited by force to participate in armed confrontations. The term patria —motherland—was generally used to refer to the native province, rather than to the Argentine nation. The Argentine elites who started to organize the nation after the defeat of what they saw as backwards social forces despised Indians and gauchos and deliberately attempted to whiten and modernize the country by promoting European immigration. The newly arrived immigrants changed both the rural and urban landscape of the littoral and pampas regions.

By the 1880s, the majority of the indigenous populations were dominated and pushed to marginal and inhospitable regions. Victory over the Indians of the Pampas and Patagonia was described as the Conquest of the Desert. Vast tracts of land were distributed among the conquerors. The gauchos, who had roamed in open spaces and sometimes escaped into Indian lands to avoid the militia, gradually disappeared from the countryside as a social group. They competed with the immigrants for salaried work in the ranches that were demarcated with barbed wire fences. Many landowners believed that gauchos were ill-suited for agricultural labor and favored the hiring of foreigners. Immigrants arrived by the thousands, to the point that in cities like Buenos Aires foreign-born residents outnumbered the Argentines. Many immigrants joined the industrial labor force. The strategy of encouraging immigration backfired on the ruling classes, who now felt threatened by these newcomers, some of whom introduced such political ideas as socialism and anarchism. These new political ideas, as well as the emergence of forms of popular culture, defied traditional morals and the dominant social and political order, pushing intellectuals and members of the ruling classes to search for what constituted a national soul. They searched for clues in the gaucho culture. This culture which had been doomed to disappearance with the modernization of the country, was reborn as a national myth by the same groups who had contributed to its earlier demise. While the foreign immigrants shook the social order with their labor strikes, and their public behavior became immortalized in popular forms such as tango music and lyrics, many of their children displayed a more moderate behavior after increasingly becoming part of the mainstream national society and joining the rising middle class.

National Identity. The educational system played an important role in incorporating new social groups into the nation. Despite regional and class differences, state institutions were quite successful in developing nationalist feelings. Although Argentines are overall very nationalistic, there is no agreement on what the basis for the commonality is. Debates over what constitutes a "national being" have been the source of bitter and often violent confrontations. To some, the national culture is a mixture of indigenous, Spanish, and Afro-Argentine traditions, dramatically modified by European immigrants at the beginning of the twentieth century, and experiencing further transformations with globalization in the late twentieth century. For others "true" nationhood is an unmodified essence rooted in the Catholic and Spanish heritage. During the Malvinas/Falklands War the first definition proved to be more powerful. The military government, until then a defender of the more conservative nationalism that emphasized the connection with "Mother Spain" and the Catholic Church and rejected everything that developed in the West after the French Revolution, was compelled to adopt symbols embraced by the population at large to gain their support. The same singers and popular music the armed forces banned because they were not proper manifestations of a "Western and Christian" society, were suddenly summoned when those same armed forces decided to confront a Western nation and justify the war as an anticolonial enterprise. Popular folk music, tango, and national rock were back on the radio and national television to contribute to the national bonding.

Ethnic Relations. With the exception of some areas of the northwest, Argentina was not densely populated at the time of the Spanish conquest. Many indigenous groups disappeared because of harsh forced labor, compulsory resettlement, and diseases introduced by the Spanish conquerors. Those Indians who maintained their autonomy until well into the nineteenth century were brought to near extinction by military campaigns in the 1880s. In the last years of the twentieth century it was estimated that the Indians represent less than 1 percent of the total population (probably around 300,000 people). It is difficult to determine their numbers because those living in urban centers are rarely classified as Indians in official statistics. During colonial times there was an intense slave traffic in the Río de la Plata region. From the late eighteenth century to the mid-nineteenth century, blacks and mulattoes of African and European origin represented between 25 and 30 percent of the total population of Buenos Aires. Their numbers decreased dramatically in the last decades of the nineteenth century: in 1887 only 8,005 Afro-Argentines lived in Buenos Aires out of a total population of 433,375. Epidemics, participation in civil wars, and intermarriage are the most common explanations for the staggering population decline of Afro-Argentines. Less than 4,000 people in Buenos Aires claimed Afro-Argentine identity at the close of the twentieth century. Mestizo rural workers and Afro-Argentines resented the presence of European immigrants who competed for scarce housing and sources of labor. By the beginning of the twentieth century, foreign-born immigrants had already taken over many low-paying jobs formerly performed by Argentines. They quickly dominated the urban landscape as they outnumbered Argentine nationals. This contributed to the way Argentines think about their ethnic identity. One of the most dominant defnitions of the country's identity is that the majority of Argentina's population is white with European ancestors. This image is promoted both by outside observers as well as by some local intellectuals. Most of these assertions derive from taking Buenos Aires as representative of the whole nation, but even this city is not as white as it is usually depicted. Industrialization and later economic stagnation both in Argentina and neighboring countries caused migration to the metropolitan area from the interior provinces and from neighboring countries. These new residents are predominantly mestizos. Migrants also include indigenous peoples and a small number of mulattoes and blacks from Uruguay and Brazil. During Perón's government, rural migrants to the city constituted his loyal political base. Middle class and upper middle class opponents of Perón despised these new social sectors and derogatorily called them cabecitas negras (black heads). This term, together with negro/a, is still used to refer to mestizo and indigenous peoples. While the social conflicts of the 1940s and 1950s were often described in racist terms as cabecitas, and as an "alluvial zoo" invading the urban space, the relationship with those perceived as non-whites by the dominant social groups, has acquired xenophobic overtones. Land and housing occupation, and an increase in crime are attributed to immigrants from neighboring countries. It is difficult to assess the number of Latin American immigrants and internal migrants to cities, and it is even more difficult to determine how they identify themselves. There are no reliable statistics in the 1990s regarding the ethnic composition of the country. Besides Latin American immigration, immigrants from Eastern Europe, Africa, and Asia were also arriving in Argentina in the late twentieth century. Most of these immigrants are illegal and nobody knows their real numbers.

Argentine people & culture

Unlike many other South American countries, such as Peru and Ecuador, Argentina has fewer native people and a large population of people who came from Europe. In fact, around 95% of Argentina’s population are of European descent, mostly from Italy, Spain and Germany. Much of the native population died from diseases brought in by Europeans in the 16th and 17th centuries.

Nearly half of the population live in the area around Buenos Aires. This beautiful city is sometimes referred to as the “Paris of South America” because of its European influences.

Merchants sell goods in front of colourful buildings in Argentina.

Football is the favourite sport in Argentina, and the country has produced some of the world’s most famous players, such as Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona.

Gauchos, like American cowboys, have become a symbol of the open plains of the Pampas region. Historically they were brave – and often unruly! – country people devoted to lassoing and raising cattle and horses.

Vocational Education

Higher education in Argentina is divided into 3 phases, namely 3-year degrees (teachers and technicians), 4 &ndash 6 year degrees (engineering, medicine, legal) and graduate qualifications. Although tertiary education is theoretically free, hidden costs such as accommodation, transportation, materials and forgoing income make this less than a reality.

There are 39 state universities in the country and another 46 private ones too. Of these the National University of Córdoba is the oldest, having been founded by jesuit monks on 1613.


Argentina possesses amazing geographic diversity, which makes it the perfect adventure for anyone. This large country is known as the Land of Six Continents and is the eighth largest country in the world. A total of 39,537,943 people call Argentina their home. The Andean culture, lush rainforests, deserts, majestic mountains, and looming glaciers create an environment unlike any other and vacationers will return home with exotic tales of traveling in Argentina.

Nature lovers will find northern Argentina appealing, where they will become immersed in the lush, rich rainforest, while they sit in awe of the Iguazu Falls. If the sounds of nature are not your idea of vacation, then maybe the hustle and bustle of Buenos Aires is. In this bustling metropolis, one will walk cobblestone streets alongside European architecture passing by shops, opera houses, churches, and vibrant tango bars. Try the Teatro Colon for a night of world-class opera. For true adventurers, travel to southern Argentina to a remote area named Patagonia. This is a mountaineer's playground, because it is covered with mountains reaching to the highest points of the sky, clear blue lakes, and tremendous glaciers inviting skiers and snowboarders. Take a trip to Perito Moreno Glacier, or trek through part of the Argentina Andes.

While you are in the lush rainforest, you may want to seek shelter from rain and wild animals. Hotel Solar de la Plaza can provide all the comforts of home only a few steps from a exotic rainforest. Hotel Dique is great place to rest your feet. It is a little more intimate since it only has 28 rooms. Or Hotel Del Sol is an ideal place if your wallet has grown thin with your adventures.

Argentina Map

In Buenos Aires, you can live like a king at Claridge Hotel a four-star resort tucked away downtown making it easy to walk to and from your desired destination. The Buenos Aires Wilton is perfect if you want to shop for those hidden Argentina treasures for loved ones back home. If you are looking to be apart of the European architecture, then try Hyde Park. You will get the chance to experience the architecture first hand, as it becomes your home away from home.

Find that perfect hideaway in Patagonia, while you are trying to explore the southern remote parts of this vast country. Eolo is a great place that is close to the mountains, and provides some amazing scenic views. Estancia Helsingfor is a quaint romantic lodge. And while you are huddled away together, you can experience the views and wilderness fresh smells.

Traveling Argentina is amazing for all vacationers. Strike up a conversation with a local Argentinian, and hear the wonderful stories of their culture and homeland. The adventure is waiting and it is just a hemisphere away. Just don't forget your passport.

Transportation in America Before 1876

In the 19th century, as the United States spread across the continent, transportation systems helped connect the growing nation. First rivers and roads and then canals and railroads moved travelers and agricultural and manufactured goods between farms, towns, and cities. Transportation links helped create a set of distinct local and regional economies. They also contributed to the sectional jealousies and rivalries that set the stage for the Civil War. Not until the end of the century would transportation networks form a national economy.

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Many ski centres operate in the Andes during the winter Las Leñas and San Carlos de Bariloche are particularly well-known.

There are two important nature preserves around Puerto Madryn, Punta Tombo, and Peninsula Valdes where one can see guanacos, rheas, penguins, sea lions, birds, and whales at certain times of the year.

The wine regions of Mendoza and Salta are also very popular tourist destinations, and many tourists are discovering that entering Argentina and using these cities as a base often suits them better than dealing with the bustle of Buenos Aires. Mendoza is a place where many find it is comfortable to learn or brush up on Spanish before touring South America.

The Traslasierra Valley is a natural geographic region of Córdoba, Argentina, located west of the Big Picks or Hills where Mina Clavero is the capital of tourism and is the most important commercial centre together with the city of Villa Dolores. Among this magnificent mountain range of almost 2800m (9200 ft), several charming villages will welcome you with a great variety of lodgings, restaurants, cultural events and outdoor activities for everyone. The sun shines most of the year inviting you to practice eco-tourism and adventure tourism experiencing a direct contact with nature.

Health tourism is also possible in some places in Traslasierra valley, where alternative therapies or anti-stress programs are available in world class Spas.

Cultural heritage has also a main role, with museums, churches and estancias (ranches) of the eighteenth century.

The Argentine dogo or mastiff is quite a crossbreeding feat. Developed for hunting purposes, the dogo is so strong it can allegedly kill a wild boar. Argentine breeder Antonio Nores Martínez wanted a fierce animal that would still be completely loyal to its master. He developed the breed off the now-extinct Cordoba Fighting Dog and debuted the dogo in 1928. The large white dog also has traces of other mighty breeds, such as the Great Dane. Considered a crossbreeding triumph, the dogo is restricted in some parts of the world because of its great strength.

Watch the video: The Animated History of Argentina