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Bonao
Municipality
Culture square in Bonao
Culture square in Bonao
Country  Dominican Republic
Province Monseñor Nouel
Municipal Districts 5
Founded 1495
Municipality since
1865
Area
 • Total 142.8 km2 (55.1 sq mi)
 • Urban 13.01 km2 (5.02 sq mi)
Elevation 83 m (272 ft)
Population (2010)
 • Total 76,241
 • Density 533.90/km2 (1,382.8/sq mi)
 • Urban 68,602
Time zone AST (UTC-4)
 • Summer (DST) AST (UTC-4)
Distance: 40 km (25 mi) to La Vega
85 km (53 mi) to Santo Domingo

Bonao is a Dominican city and the head municipality of the Monseñor Nouel province, in the center of the country.

Bonao is the Taíno name of the region where the old city was founded. The city is in the Bonao Valley, at about 85 km to the northwest of Santo Domingo, the capital of the Dominican Republic.

Population

The municipality had, in 2010, a total population of 76,241: 37,349 men and 38,892 women. The urban population was 90% of the total population.

History

Christopher Columbus founded in 1494 a small fort in the region known by the Taíno people as Bonao. The fort was built to protect the gold mines around Maimón and other places. But there was not much gold in the region and the fort was soon left without people.

The town was founded again during the early years of the 19th century but at about 5 km (3.1 mi) to the north of the old place, closer to the River Yuna. The new town had the name Yuna was soon was changed to the old one: Bonao. It was also called El Bonao (English: "The Bonao") but the article "El" (English: "The") was left out during the first years of the 20th century and it is never used now.

The new small town was made a Puesto Cantonal (and old category, like a "Military Post") in 1859 and then a municipality of La Vega province in 1865.

In 1936, its name was changed to Monseñor Meriño after the Archbishop Adolfo A. Nouel, past president of the country. In 1960, it got is old name of Bonao.

Geography

Bonao is in the Bonao Valley in the centre of the Dominican Republic. It has a total area of 142.8 km2 (55.1 sq mi). It has five municipal districts (a municipal district is a subdivision of a municipality); these are Arroyo Toro-Masipedro, Jayaco, Juma Bejucal, La Salvia-Los Quemados and Sabana del Puerto.

The altitude of the city of Bonao is 83 m (272 ft) above sea level.

The municipality of Bonao has the La Vega province to the north and to the west, the Sánchez Ramírez province to the east, the municipality of Maimón to the southeast, the municipality of Piedra Blanc to the south and the province of San José de Ocoa province to the southwest.

The city is near the River Yuna, one of the most important river of the Hispaniola island; the sources of the river are on the eastern side of the Cordillera Central ("Central mountain range"). It flows through the Bonao Valley and then through the Cibao Valley and into the Samaná Bay.

There are other smaller rivers near Bonao, tributaries of the River Yuna.

Climate

Bonao has a tropical wet climate (Köppen-Geiger classification: Af) with no dry or cold season as it is constantly moist (rainfalls during the whole year).

The average amount of rainfall for the year in the city is 2,216.2 mm (87.3 in). The month with the most precipitation on average is May with 333.3 mm (13.1 in) of rainfall, followed by October with 251.8 mm (9.9 in).

The driest season is winter. The month with the least rainfall on average is January with an average of 107.2 mm (4.2 in) followed by February with an average of 108.3 mm (4.3 in).

Climate data for Bonao (1961–1990)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 29.5
(85.1)
29.9
(85.8)
30.8
(87.4)
31.3
(88.3)
31.7
(89.1)
32.9
(91.2)
33.0
(91.4)
33.0
(91.4)
33.1
(91.6)
32.6
(90.7)
31.2
(88.2)
29.5
(85.1)
31.54
(88.78)
Average low °C (°F) 18.1
(64.6)
18.1
(64.6)
18.7
(65.7)
19.5
(67.1)
20.1
(68.2)
20.9
(69.6)
21.1
(70)
21.0
(69.8)
20.6
(69.1)
20.3
(68.5)
19.6
(67.3)
18.7
(65.7)
19.73
(67.51)
Rainfall mm (inches) 107.2
(4.22)
108.3
(4.264)
117.7
(4.634)
204.1
(8.035)
333.3
(13.122)
138.8
(5.465)
176.3
(6.941)
203.9
(8.028)
180.2
(7.094)
251.8
(9.913)
248.2
(9.772)
146.4
(5.764)
2,216.2
(87.252)
Source: NOAA

Administrative division

The municipality of Bonao has five municipal districts:

Municipal districts of Bonao
Code Municipal district Population
(2010)
280102 Sabana del Puerto 10,049
280103 Juma Bejucal 22,545
280104 Arroyo Toro - Masipedro 2,851
280105 Jayaco 8,051
280106 La Salvia - Los Quemados 5,601

Economy

Farming is very important around the city; it is one of main regions of the country where rice is grown.

Mining is also important here; nickel is mined in a mountain close to the city by the Falconbridge, a Canadian company.

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