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San Antonio, Texas
City
City of San Antonio
From top to bottom and Left to Right: 1. San Antonio downtown from the Tower of The Americas at night. 2. The Riverwalk 3. The McNay Museum of Art 4. The Tower Life Building 5. Bexar County courthouse 6. San Antonio Public Library 7. The Tower of the Americas at night 8. The Alamo
From top to bottom and Left to Right: 1. San Antonio downtown from the Tower of The Americas at night. 2. The Riverwalk 3. The McNay Museum of Art 4. The Tower Life Building 5. Bexar County courthouse 6. San Antonio Public Library 7. The Tower of the Americas at night 8. The Alamo
Flag of San Antonio, Texas
Flag
Official seal of San Antonio, Texas
Seal
Coat of arms of San Antonio, Texas
Coat of arms
Nickname(s): S.A., River City,
Alamo City, Military City USA, Countdown City
Motto: Libertatis cunabula (Latin, Cradle of liberty)
Location in Bexar County in the state of Texas
Location in Bexar County in the state of Texas
Country  United States
State  Texas
Counties Bexar, Medina, Comal
Foundation May 1, 1718
Incorporated June 5, 1837
Named for Saint Anthony of Padua
Area
 • City 465.4 sq mi (1,205.4 km2)
 • Land 460.93 sq mi (1,193.7 km2)
 • Water 4.5 sq mi (11.7 km2)
Elevation 650 ft (198 m)
Population (2014)
 • City 1,436,697 (est.)
 • Density 3,000.35/sq mi (1,147.3/km2)
 • Metro 2,328,652 (25th)
 • Demonym San Antonian
Time zone CST (UTC−6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC−5)
Zip code 78201-66, 78268-70, 78275, 78278-80, 78283-89, 78291-99
Area code(s) 210 (majority), 830 (portions), 726 (planned)
Interstates I-10.svg I-35.svg I-37.svg I-410.svg
U.S. Routes US 87.svg US 90.svg US 181.svg US 281.svg
Website www.SanAntonio.gov

San Antonio (/ˌsæn ænˈtni./ Spanish for "Saint Anthony"), officially the City of San Antonio, is the seventh-most populated city in the United States and the second-most populous city in the state of Texas, with a population of 1,409,019. It was the fastest growing of the top 10 largest cities in the United States from 2000 to 2010, and the second from 1990 to 2000. The city straddles South Texas and Central Texas and is on the southwestern corner of an urban megaregion known as the Texas Triangle.

San Antonio serves as the seat of Bexar County. Recent annexations have extended the city's boundaries into Medina County and, though for only a very tiny area near the city of Garden Ridge, into Comal County. Due to its placement, the city has characteristics of other western urban centers in which there are sparsely populated areas and a low density rate outside of the city limits. San Antonio is the center of the San Antonio–New Braunfels Metropolitan Statistical Area. Commonly referred to as Greater San Antonio, the metropolitan area has a population of nearly 2.4 million based on the 2015 US Census estimate, making it the 25th-largest metropolitan area in the United States and third-largest in the state of Texas. Growth along the Interstate 35 and Interstate 10 corridors to the north, west and east make it likely that the metropolitan area will continue to expand.

San Antonio was named for Saint Anthony of Padua, whose feast day is on June 13, by a 1691 Spanish expedition in the area. The city contains five 18th-century Spanish frontier missions, including The Alamo and San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, which were designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2015. Other notable attractions include the River Walk, the Tower of the Americas, the Alamo Bowl, and Marriage Island. Commercial entertainment includes SeaWorld and Six Flags Fiesta Texas theme parks, and according to the San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau, the city is visited by about 32 million tourists a year. The city is home to the five-time NBA champion San Antonio Spurs and hosts the annual San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo, one of the largest such events in the country.

The U.S. armed forces have numerous facilities in San Antonio: Fort Sam Houston, Lackland Air Force Base, Randolph Air Force Base (which constitute Joint Base San Antonio), and Lackland AFB/Kelly Field Annex, with Camp Bullis and Camp Stanley located outside the city. Kelly Air Force Base operated out of San Antonio until 2001, when the airfield was transferred to Lackland AFB. The remaining portions of the base were developed as Port San Antonio, an industrial/business park and aerospace complex. San Antonio is home to six Fortune 500 companies and the South Texas Medical Center, the only medical research and care provider in the South Texas region.

History

San Antonio, Texas in 1886
Lithograph of San Antonio in 1886

At the time of European encounter, Payaya Indians lived near the San Antonio River Valley in the San Pedro Springs area, calling the vicinity Yanaguana, meaning "refreshing waters". In 1691, a group of Spanish Catholic explorers and missionaries came upon the river and Payaya settlement on June 13, the feast day of St. Anthony of Padua. They named the place and river "San Antonio" in his honor.

It was years before any Spanish settlement took place. Father Antonio de Olivares visited the site in 1709, and he was determined to found a mission and civilian settlement there. The viceroy gave formal approval for a combined mission and presidio in late 1716, as he wanted to forestall any French expansion into the area from their colony of La Louisiane, as well as prevent illegal trading with the Payaya. He directed Martin de Alarcón, the governor of Coahuila and Texas, to establish the mission complex. Differences between Alarcón and Olivares resulted in delays, and construction did not start until 1718. Fray Antonio de Olivares built, with the help of the Payaya Indians, the Misión de San Antonio de Valero (The Alamo), the Presidio San Antonio de Bexar, the bridge that connected both, and the Acequia Madre de Valero.

The families who clustered around the presidio and mission formed the beginnings of Villa de Béjar, destined to become the most important town in Spanish Texas. On May 1, the governor transferred ownership of the Mission San Antonio de Valero (later famous as the Alamo) to Fray Antonio de Olivares. On May 5, 1718 he commissioned the Presidio San Antonio de Béxar ("Béjar" in modern Spanish orthography) on the west side of the San Antonio River, one-fourth league from the mission.

On February 14, 1719, the Marquis of San Miguel de Aguayo proposed to the king of Spain that 400 families be transported from the Canary Islands, Galicia, or Havana to populate the province of Texas. His plan was approved, and notice was given the Canary Islanders (isleños) to furnish 200 families; the Council of the Indies suggested that 400 families should be sent from the Canaries to Texas by way of Havana and Veracruz. By June 1730, 25 families had reached Cuba, and 10 families had been sent to Veracruz before orders from Spain came to stop the re-settlement.

Under the leadership of Juan Leal Goraz, the group marched overland from Veracruz to the Presidio San Antonio de Béxar, where they arrived on March 9, 1731. Due to marriages along the way, the party now included 15 families, a total of 56 persons. They joined the military community established in 1718. The immigrants formed the nucleus of the villa of San Fernando de Béxar, the first regularly organized civil government in Texas. Several older families of San Antonio trace their descent from the Canary Island colonists. María Rosa Padrón was the first baby born of Canary Islander descent in San Antonio.

During the Spanish Mexican settlement of Southwestern lands, which took place over the following century, Juan Leal Goraz Jr. was a prominent figure. He claimed nearly 100,000 sq miles (153,766 acres) as Spanish territory and held some control for nearly three decades: this area stretched across six present-day states. San Antonio was designated as Leal Goraz's capital. It represented Mexican expansion into the area. With his robust military forces, he led exploration and establishing Spanish colonial bases as far as San Francisco, California. Widespread bankruptcy forced Leal Goraz Jr.'s army back into the current boundaries of Mexico; they fell into internal conflict and turmoil with neighboring entities.

AlamoMemorial-0727
Memorial to the Alamo defenders

San Antonio grew to become the largest Spanish settlement in Texas; it was designated as the capital of the Spanish, later Mexican, province of Tejas. From San Antonio, the Camino Real (today Nacogdoches Road), was built to the small frontier town of Nacogdoches. Mexico allowed European-American settlers from the United States into the territory; they mostly occupied land in the eastern part. When Antonio López de Santa Anna unilaterally abolished the Mexican Constitution of 1824, violence ensued in many states of Mexico.

In a series of battles, the Texian Army succeeded in forcing Mexican soldiers out of the settlement areas east of San Antonio, which were dominated by Americans. Under the leadership of Ben Milam, in the Battle of Bexar, December 1835, Texian forces captured San Antonio from forces commanded by General Martin Perfecto de Cos, Santa Anna's brother-in-law. In the spring of 1836, Santa Anna marched on San Antonio. A volunteer force under the command of James C. Neill occupied and fortified the deserted mission.

Upon his departure, the joint command of William Barrett Travis and James Bowie were left in charge of defending the old mission. The Battle of the Alamo took place from February 23 to March 6, 1836. The outnumbered Texian force was ultimately defeated, with all of the Alamo defenders killed. These men were seen as "martyrs" for the cause of Texas freedom and "Remember the Alamo" became a rallying cry in the Texian Army's eventual success at defeating Santa Anna's army.

Juan Seguín, who organized the company of Tejano patriots, who fought for Texas independence, fought at the Battle of Concepción, Siege of Bexar, and the Battle of San Jacinto, and served as mayor of San Antonio. He was forced out of that office, due to threats on his life, by sectarian newcomers and political opponents in 1842, becoming the last Tejano mayor for nearly 150 years.

San antonio tex 1939
An aerial view of San Antonio in 1939

In 1845, the United States finally decided to annex Texas and include it as a state in the Union. This led to the Mexican–American War. Though the US ultimately won, the war was devastating to San Antonio. By its end, the population of the city had been reduced by almost two-thirds, to 800 inhabitants. Bolstered by migrants and immigrants, by 1860 at the start of the Civil War, San Antonio had grown to a city of 15,000 people.

Post-Civil War to present

Following the Civil War, San Antonio prospered as a center of the cattle industry. During this period, it remained a frontier city, with a mixture of cultures that was different from other US cities. In the 1850s Frederick Law Olmsted, the landscape architect who designed Central Park in New York City, traveled throughout the South and Southwest, and published accounts of his observations. In his 1859 book about Texas, Olmsted described San Antonio as having a "jumble of races, costumes, languages, and buildings", which gave it a quality that only New Orleans could rival in what he described as "odd and antiquated foreignness."

In 1877, following the Reconstruction Era, developers constructed the first railroad to San Antonio, connecting it to major markets and port cities. Texas was the first state to have major cities develop by railroads rather than waterways. In Texas, the railroads supported a markedly different pattern of development of major interior cities, such as San Antonio, Dallas and Fort Worth, compared to the historical development of coastal port cities in the established eastern states.

At the beginning of the 20th century, the streets of the city's downtown were widened to accommodate street cars and modern traffic. At that time, many of the older historic buildings were demolished in the process of this modernization.

Since the late twentieth century, San Antonio has had steady population growth. The city's population has nearly doubled in 35 years, from just over 650,000 in the 1970 census to an estimated 1.2 million in 2005, through both population growth and land annexation (the latter has considerably enlarged the physical area of the city). In 1990, the United States Census Bureau reported San Antonio's population as 55.6% Hispanic, 7% black, and 36.2% non-Hispanic white.

Geography

Weather chart for San Antonio
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source: NOAA

San Antonio is located near 29.5°N 98.5°W. It is about 75 miles to the southwest of its neighboring city, Austin, the state capital. The city is also about 190 miles west of Houston and about 250 miles south of the Dallas–Fort Worth area. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2000 the city had a total area of 412.07 square miles (1,067.3 km2)—407.56 square miles (1,055.6 km2) (98.9%) of land and 4.51 square miles (11.7 km2) (1.1%) of water. The city sits on the Balcones Escarpment. The altitude of San Antonio is 772 feet (235 m) above sea level.

The primary source of drinking water for the city is the Edwards Aquifer. Impounded in 1962 and 1969, respectively, Victor Braunig Lake and Calaveras Lake were among the first reservoirs in the country built to use recycled treated wastewater for power plant cooling, reducing the amount of groundwater needed for electrical generation.

Neighborhoods

Climate and vegetation

San Antonio has a transitional humid subtropical climate (Köppen: Cfa). The weather is hot in the summer, comfortably warm or mild winters subject to descending northern cold fronts in the winter with cool to cold nights, and warm and rainy in the spring and fall.

San Antonio receives about a dozen subfreezing nights each year, typically seeing some sort of wintry precipitation about once every 2-3 winters (i.e. sleet/freezing rain), but accumulation and snow itself are very rare. Winters may pass without any freezing precipitation at all, and up to a decade has passed between snowfalls in the past. According to the National Weather Service, there have been 31 instances of snowfall (a trace or more) in the city in the past 122 years, about once every four years. Snow was most recently seen on February 4, 2011 when 0.5 in (1.3 cm) of snow coated the city. In 1985, the city received a record snowfall of 16 inches (41 cm).

San Antonio and New Braunfels, forty miles to the northeast, are some of the most flood-prone regions in North America. The October 1998 Central Texas floods were one of the costliest floods in United States history, resulting in $750 million in damage and 32 deaths. In 2002, from June 30 to July 7, 35 in (890 mm) of rain fell in the San Antonio area, resulting in widespread flooding and 12 fatalities.

Instances of tornadoes within the city limits have been reported as recently as February 2017, although they seldom occur. An F2 tornado will land within 50 mi (80 km) of the city on average once every five years. San Antonio has experienced two F4 tornadoes, one in 1953 and another in 1973. The 1953 tornado resulted in two deaths and 15 injuries.

In San Antonio, July and August tie for the average warmest months, with an average high of 95 °F (35 °C). The highest temperature ever to be recorded was 111 °F (44 °C) on September 5, 2000. The average coolest month is January. The lowest recorded temperature ever was 0 °F (−18 °C) on January 31, 1949. May, June, and October have quite a bit of precipitation. Since recording began in 1871, the average annual precipitation has been 29.03 inches (737 mm), with a maximum of 52.28 inches (1,328 mm) and a minimum of 10.11 inches (256.8 mm) in one year.

Natural vegetation in the San Antonio area (where undisturbed by development) includes oak-cedar woodland, oak grassland savanna, chaparral brush and riparian (stream) woodland. The San Antonio area is at the westernmost limit for Cabbage palmetto (Sabal palmetto).

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 3,488
1860 8,235 136.1%
1870 12,256 48.8%
1880 20,550 67.7%
1890 37,673 83.3%
1900 53,321 41.5%
1910 96,614 81.2%
1920 161,379 67.0%
1930 231,542 43.5%
1940 253,854 9.6%
1950 408,442 60.9%
1960 587,718 43.9%
1970 654,153 11.3%
1980 785,940 20.1%
1990 935,933 19.1%
2000 1,144,646 22.3%
2010 1,327,407 16.0%
Est. 2015 1,469,845 10.7%
historical data sources:
Racial composition 2010 1990 1970 1950
White 72.6% 72.2% 91.4% 92.8%
 —Non-Hispanic whites 26.6% 36.2% 47.7% n/a
Black or African American 6.9% 7.0% 7.6% 7.0%
Hispanic or Latino (of any race) 63.2% 55.6% 44.9% n/a
Asian 2.4% 1.1% 0.3% 0.2%
Race and ethnicity 2010- San Antonio (5559903509)
Map of racial distribution in San Antonio, 2010 U.S. Census. Each dot is 25 people: White, Black, Asian Hispanic, or Other (yellow)

2010

According to the 2010 US Census, 1,327,407 people resided in the city proper of San Antonio, an increase of 16.0% since 2000.

The racial composition of the city based on the 2010 US Census is as follows:

  • 72.6% White (Non-Hispanic Whites: 26.6%)
  • 6.9% Black
  • 0.9% Native American
  • 2.4% Asian
  • 0.1% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
  • 3.4% Two or more races
  • 13.7% Other races

In addition, 63.2% of the city's population was of Hispanic or Latino origin, of any race.

2000

According to the 2000 US Census, the city proper had a population of 1,144,646, ranking it the ninth-most populated city in the country. Due to San Antonio's low density rate and lack of significant metropolitan population outside the city limits, the metropolitan area ranked just 30th in the US with a population of 1,592,383.

Subsequent population counts, however, indicate continued rapid growth in the area. As stated above, the 2010 US Census showed the city's population at 1,327,407, making it the second-most-populous city in Texas (after only Houston), as well as the seventh-most-populous city in the United States. The 2011 US Census estimate for the eight-county San Antonio–New Braunfels metropolitan area placed its population at 2,194,927 making it the third-most populous metro area in Texas (after Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex and Houston Metropolitan Area) and the 24th-most populous metro area in the US. The metropolitan area is bordered to the northeast by Austin–Round Rock–San Marcos, and the two metropolitan areas together combine to form a region of over 4.1 million people.

About 405,474 households, and 280,993 families reside in San Antonio. The population density is 2,808.5 people per square mile (1,084.4 km2). There are 433,122 housing units at an average density of 1,062.7 per square mile (410.3 km2).

The age of the city's population distributed as 28.5% under the age of 18, 10.8% from 18 to 24, 30.8% from 25 to 44, 19.4% from 45 to 64, and 10.4% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 32 years. In San Antonio, 48% of the population are males, and 52% of the population are females. For every 100 females, there are 93.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 89.7 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $36,214, and the median income for a family is $53,100. Males have a median income of $30,061 versus $24,444 for females. The per capita income for the city is $17,487. About 17.3% of the population and 14.0% of families are below the poverty line. Of the total population, 24.3% of those under the age of 18 and 13.5% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.

Source:

Culture

Further information: Culture of San Antonio

Attractions

Cathedral of San Fernando
Cathedral of San Fernando
San Antonio Skyline
Downtown San Antonio from the Tower of the Americas

San Antonio is a popular tourist destination.

The Alamo Mission in San Antonio ("the Alamo"), located in Downtown, is Texas' top tourist attraction. Because of the mission, San Antonio is often called the "Alamo City".

The River Walk, which meanders through the Downtown area, is the city's second-most-visited attraction, giving it the additional nickname of "River City." Extended an additional 13 miles between 2009–2013, the landscaped walking and bike path line the San Antonio River from the "Museum Reach" beginning at the Historic Pearl Brewery through downtown, "Downtown Reach", past the Blue Star's "Eagleland" to the "Mission Reach" ending at Loop 410 South past Mission San Juan Capistrano. Lined with numerous shops, bars, and restaurants, as well as the Arneson River Theater, this attraction is transformed into an impressive festival of lights during the Christmas and New Year holiday period, and is suffused with the local sounds of folklorico and flamenco music during the summer, particularly during celebrations such as the Fiesta Noche del Rio.

The Downtown Area also features San Fernando Cathedral, The Majestic Theatre, Hemisfair (home of the Tower of the Americas, and UTSA's Institute of Texan Cultures), La Villita, Market Square, the Spanish Governor's Palace, and the historic Menger Hotel. The Fairmount Hotel, built in 1906 and San Antonio's second oldest hotel, is in the Guinness World Records as one of the heaviest buildings ever moved intact. It was placed in its new location, three blocks south of the Alamo, over four days in 1985, and cost $650,000 to move.

SeaWorld, located 16 miles (26 km) west of Downtown in the city's Westover Hills district, is the number 3 attraction. Also, there is the very popular San Antonio Zoo located in the city's Brackenridge Park.

San Antonio is also home to several amusement parks including Six Flags Fiesta Texas, Splashtown and Morgan's Wonderland, a theme park for children who have special needs. Kiddie Park, featuring old fashioned amusement rides for children, was established in 1925, and is the oldest children's amusement park in the U.S.

San Antonio is home to the first museum of modern art in Texas, the McNay Art Museum. Other art institutions and museums include ArtPace, Blue Star Contemporary Art Center, the Briscoe Western Art Museum, Buckhorn Saloon & Museum (where visitors can experience something of the cowboy culture year round), San Antonio Museum of Art, formerly the Lonestar Brewery, Say Si (mentoring San Antonio artistic youth), the Southwest School of Art, Texas Rangers Museum, Texas Transportation Museum, the Witte Museum and the DoSeum. A North Star Mall display features 40 foot (12 meters) tall cowboy boots.

The five missions of the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, including the Alamo, were named a UNESCO World Heritage Site on July 5, 2015. The San Antonio Missions became the 23rd U.S. site on the World Heritage List, which includes the Grand Canyon and the Statue of Liberty. It is the first site in the state of Texas. The new Mission Reach Ecosystem and Restoration and Recreation project was completed in 2013, and created over 15 miles of biking, hiking, and paddling trails that connect the Missions to the San Antonio riverwalk.

Other places of interest include the San Antonio Botanical Garden, Brackenridge Park, the Japanese Tea Gardens, the Sunken Garden Theater, and The Woodlawn Theatre and the Majik Theatre a children's educational theater.

Work was authorized to begin in 2015 on the restoration of the former Hot Wells hotel, spa, and bathhouses on the San Antonio River on the south-side of the city.

Photo gallery

Digital library

In the fall of 2013, Bexar County opened BiblioTech – Bexar County's Digital Library, the nation's first bookless library. It serves the city of San Antonio and Bexar County.

Transportation

Air

The San Antonio International Airport (SAT) is located in uptown San Antonio, about eight miles north of Downtown. San Antonio International is the 6th busiest airport based on passenger boardings in Texas and 45th in the United States. It has two terminals and is served by 10 airlines serving 44 destinations including six in Mexico. Stinson Municipal Airport is a reliever airport located six miles (10 km) south of Downtown San Antonio. The airport has three runways and is also home to the Texas Air Museum.

Mass transit

Further information: VIA Metropolitan Transit
San Antonio Intersection
A VIA bus stopped at a Downtown San Antonio intersection

A bus and rubber tired streetcar (bus) system is provided by the city's metropolitan transit authority, VIA Metropolitan Transit. VIA's full fare monthly unlimited Big Pass is $35 per month. VIA began operating a Bus Rapid Transit line known as VIA Primo in December 2012, which connects Downtown San Antonio to the South Texas Medical Center, the main campus of the University of Texas at San Antonio, and the independent enclave city of Leon Valley.

In August 2010, VIA Metropolitan Transit unveiled buses that are powered by diesel-electric hybrid technology. The 30 hybrid buses were put into service on VIA's express routes to serve daily commuters across the city. This set of buses follows the introduction of new vehicles powered by compressed natural gas, which were unveiled in May 2010. In the fall of 2010, VIA took delivery of three new buses that are powered by electricity from on-board batteries. These buses serve the Downtown core area, and are the first revenue vehicles VIA operates which have zero emissions.

VIA offers 89 regular bus routes and two Downtown streetcar routes. This includes express service from Downtown to park and ride locations in the south, west, northwest, north central and northeast sides of the city, with service to major locations such as UTSA, Six Flags Fiesta Texas and SeaWorld. VIA also offers a special service to city events including Spurs games and city parades from its park and ride locations. VIA has, among its many routes, one of the longest local transit routes in America. Routes 550 (clockwise) and 551 (counterclockwise) travel 48 miles (77 km) one way as they loop around the city.

Rail

Amtrak, the national passenger rail service, provides service to San Antonio at San Antonio Amtrak Station, operating the Texas Eagle daily between San Antonio and Chicago's Union Station. Amtrak also operates the Sunset Limited three times a week in each direction through San Antonio between Los Angeles and New Orleans.

The Texas Eagle section travels between San Antonio and Los Angeles as part of the Sunset Limited. The old Sunset Station is now an entertainment venue owned by VIA and neighbored by the current station and the Alamodome.

Freight service from San Antonio to Corpus Christi is provided by the Union Pacific Railroad. The predecessor route, including passenger service, from 1913 to 1956 was provided by the San Antonio, Uvalde and Gulf Railroad, or "The Sausage", as it was commonly termed. The SAU&G was merged into the Missouri Pacific Railroad in 1956 and subsequently subsumed by the Union Pacific.

San Antonio became the largest American city without an intra-city rail system when Phoenix, the former largest city without such a system, procured one in 2008. A proposed passenger rail line, LSTAR, would link San Antonio to Austin.

Road

Further information: List of highways in San Antonio
US 281, San Antonio, Texas
US 281 southbound towards Downtown San Antonio

San Antonio is served by these major freeways:

  • Interstate 10: McDermott Freeway (Northwest) runs west toward El Paso, Phoenix and Los Angeles. Jose Lopez Freeway (East) runs east toward Seguin, Houston, New Orleans and Jacksonville
  • Interstate 35: Pan Am Expressway (Northeast/Southwest)—runs south toward Laredo and runs north toward Austin, Dallas–Fort Worth, Oklahoma City, Kansas City and Minneapolis
  • Interstate 37: Lucian Adams Freeway (Southeast)—runs from San Antonio through its junction with US Highway 281 south (Edinburg and McAllen) near Three Rivers and into Corpus Christi through its junction with Interstate 69E/US Highway 77 south (Kingsville, Harlingen and Brownsville) to its southern terminus at Corpus Christi Bay.
  • Interstate 410: Connally Loop—simply called Loop 410 (four-ten) by locals is a 53-mile (85 km) inner beltway around the city.
  • US 90: Cleto Rodriguez Freeway (West) through Uvalde and Del Rio to its western terminus at I-10 in Van Horn. Prior to I-10 East and US 90 West expressway being built US 90 traveled through the west side via West Commerce St. (westbound) and Buena Vista St. (eastbound) and Enrique M. Barrera Pkwy. On the east side it traveled along East Commerce St. to its current alignment which runs concurrent with I-10 East to Seguin.
  • US 281: McAllister Freeway (North) to Johnson City and Wichita Falls. Southbound, it runs concurrent with I-37, then I-410 for 4 miles (6 km), then heads south to Pleasanton. Prior to I-37 and McAllister Fwy. being built US 281 traveled through the north side via San Pedro Ave. and the south side via Roosevelt Ave.
  • State Highway 151: Stotzer Freeway runs from US Hwy 90 West through Westover Hills which includes SeaWorld to its western terminus at State Loop 1604.
  • State Loop 1604: Charles W. Anderson Loop—simply called 1604 (sixteen-oh-four) by locals—is a 96-mile (154 km) outer beltway around San Antonio.

Other highways include:

  • US 87: Southbound to Victoria along Roland Avenue then Rigsby Avenue. It runs concurrent with I-10 for 52 miles (84 km) where it goes to San Angelo northbound.
  • US 181: Starts 0.5 miles (0.8 km) south of I-410/I-37/US 281 interchange and heads toward Corpus Christi via Beeville. Prior to I-37 being built, US 181 traveled along Presa St. from Downtown to its current alignment.
  • State Highway 16: From Freer, it runs concurrent with I-410 for 17 miles (27 km) along southwest San Antonio, over to Bandera Road to Bandera.
  • State Loop 345: Fredericksburg Road is the business loop for I-10 West/US-87 North.
  • State Loop 368: Broadway and Austin Highway is the business loop for I-35 North.
  • State PA 1502 (Wurzbach Parkway): Limited-access, high speed road parallel to north IH-410. Has connections to I-35 and I-10 across the north side of town.
  • State Loop 353: Nogalitos Street and New Laredo Highway is the business loop for I-35 South.
  • State Loop 13: Is the city's inner loop on the south side serving Lackland AFB, Port San Antonio, South Park Mall and Brooks CityBase traveling along Military Dr. on the south side and WW White Rd. on the east side to its junction with I-35/I-410. The northern arc of the loop is now I-410.

Bicycle paths

San Antonio has about 136 miles (219 km) of bike lanes, routes or off-road paths. Off-road trails travel along the San Antonio River, linear greenways, or city parks. Although largely disconnected, the progress to create a bicycle-friendly environment was recognized when San Antonio was designated a bronze-level "Bicycle Friendly Community" by the League of American Bicyclists.

Bicycle sharing

A bike sharing service was approved by the city council on June 17, 2010. The initial program consisted of 140 bikes at 14 locations supported by a "central hub". It is expected to serve both residents and visitors. San Antonio Bike Share, a non-profit, was formed to oversee the operation, locally operated and maintained by Bike World. B-Cycle, the same system used in Denver, supplies the bike share system. It began operation in March 2011.

Walkability

A 2011 study by Walk Score ranked San Antonio the 40th-most walkable of the fifty largest cities in the United States. With an average Walk Score of 33, San Antonio is one of the most car-dependent major cities in America.

International relations

Sister cities

San Antonio is twinned with:

Friendship cities

  • People's Republic of China – Suzhou, Jiangsu, People's Republic of China (2010 friendship city)
  • IsraelTel Aviv, Israel (2011 friendship city)
  • GermanyDarmstadt, Germany (2016 friendship city)

Images for kids


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