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Río Grande

Municipio de Río Grande
City and Municipality
View of Río Grande
Trees in Mameyes II, Río Grande
Flag of Río Grande
Flag
Coat of arms of Río Grande
Coat of arms
Nickname(s): 
"La Ciudad de El Yunque"
Anthem: "Entre las ondas que juguetean"
Map of Puerto Rico highlighting Río Grande Municipality
Map of Puerto Rico highlighting Río Grande Municipality
Coordinates: 18°22′49″N 65°49′53″W / 18.38028°N 65.83139°W / 18.38028; -65.83139Coordinates: 18°22′49″N 65°49′53″W / 18.38028°N 65.83139°W / 18.38028; -65.83139
Commonwealth  Puerto Rico
Founded July 16, 1840
Barrios
Area
 • Total 89.6 sq mi (232.11 km2)
 • Land 60.7 sq mi (157.28 km2)
 • Water 28.9 sq mi (74.83 km2)
Elevation
23 ft (7 m)
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 47,538
 • Density 530.56/sq mi (204.808/km2)
Demonym(s) Riograndeños
Time zone UTC−4 (AST)
ZIP Codes
00721, 00745
Area code(s) 787/939
Major routes PR primary 3.svg PR secondary 187.svg Ellipse sign 186.svg Ellipse sign 191.svg
Toll plate yellow.svg
PR primary 66.svg

Río Grande is a town and municipality of Puerto Rico located on the eastern edge of the Northern Coastal Valley, north of Las Piedras, Naguabo and Ceiba; east of Loíza and Canóvanas and west of Luquillo. Río Grande is spread over eight barrios and Río Grande Pueblo (the downtown area and the administrative center of the city). It is part of the San Juan-Caguas-Guaynabo Metropolitan Statistical Area. A big portion of El Yunque National Forest, including El Yunque's peak, is located within the municipality.

History

Río Grande was founded on July 16, 1840, by Desiderio and Quilimaco Escobar, with the approbation of governor Miguel López. It was named after the Río Grande and is located where the Río Grande and the Río Espíritu Santo (Holy Spirit) join.

Cityscape

Barrios

  • Ciénaga Alta - 4,606
  • Ciénaga Baja - 18,220
  • Guzmán Abajo - 6,614
  • Guzmán Arriba - 928
  • Herreras - 839
  • Jiménez - 2,903
  • Mameyes II - 2,919
  • Río Grande Pueblo
  • Zarzal - 13,385

Tourism

Río Grande is home to one of the largest secluded areas with beach access (Coco Beach) on the entire island. Major hotels in the area include Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Resort and Gran Melia Puerto Rico Resort. Every March, the Trump International Golf Club plays host to the PGA Tour's Puerto Rico Open.

Within a ten-minute drive is El Yunque National Forest, the only tropical rain forest within the United States National Forest System and a finalist in the New 7 Wonders of Nature receiving thousands of votes from around the globe at www.n7w.com.

Hotels

  • The Wyndham Rio Mar Beach Resort and Spa
  • Gran Melia Golf Resort
  • St. Regis Beach Resort

Landmarks and places of interest

  • Coco Beach
  • El Yunque
  • Indio Cave
  • Las Picúas Beach

Culture

Festivals and events

  • Cross Festival (May)
  • Patron Celebrations (July)

Sports

Baseball, basketball and handball are popular sports in Río Grande. Also many play tennis.

Demographics

In 1894, while a Spanish colony, the population of Río Grande was 6,237. Puerto Rico was ceded by Spain in the aftermath of the Spanish–American War under the terms of the Treaty of Paris of 1898 and became a territory of the United States. In 1899, the United States conducted its first census of Puerto Rico finding that the population of Río Grande was 12,365.

Historical population
Census Pop.
1900 12,365
1910 13,948 12.8%
1920 13,247 −5.0%
1930 14,085 6.3%
1940 16,116 14.4%
1950 16,651 3.3%
1960 17,233 3.5%
1970 22,032 27.8%
1980 34,283 55.6%
1990 45,648 33.2%
2000 52,362 14.7%
2010 54,304 3.7%
2020 47,060 −13.3%
U.S. Decennial Census
1899 (shown as 1900) 1910-1930
1930-1950 1960-2000 2010 2020

Economy

Flame tree and cows, Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
Flame tree and cows in Río Grande

Agriculture

The municipality has agricultural activity that produces fruits, vegetables, ornamental plants, and cattle.

Business

Local retail stores are aside highway PR-3. There is one large shopping mall located on 65th Infantry expressway and 956th street. The northeastern area of Puerto Rico has attracted hotels, shopping malls, sport venues among others. In 2012 the Puerto Rico Highway 66, which provides easy access to San Juan, was opened which runs along the municipality.

In 2019, volunteers and police who formed a group called Consejo Comunitario de Seguridad de Río Piedras celebrated their 32nd year aiding local businesses with security issues. This group works to ensure the safety and security of business patrons in the downtown area of Río Piedras.

Transportation

There are 48 bridges in Río Grande.

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