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Title: Urban growth and decline in the Central Sierra of Ecuador, 1698-1940
Author: Bromley, Rosemary Dulcie Follett
ISNI:       0000 0001 2409 8872
Awarding Body: University of Wales Swansea
Current Institution: Swansea University
Date of Award: 1978
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This thesis examines urban change in the Central Sierra of Ecuador, focussing on two specific aims: firstly, to describe and analyse the changing populations of the three major towns, Latacunga, Ambato and Riobamba, between 1698 and 1940; and secondly to isolate the factors which contributed to the urban population trends. In 1698, Riobamba was the largest Central Sierran town and Ambato the smallest. After initial growth, the three towns declined in the late colonial era, particularly following the 1797 earthquake. The towns grew markedly in the early national period, but thereafter differential urban development became pronounced, and while Latacunga stagnated, Riobanba and Ambato expanded, the latter becoming the largest of the three towns around 1900. Spatial variations and temporal changes in the regional population and economy influenced urban development. The major regional changes included the decline of the obraje textile industry during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and the growing importance and commercialization of agriculture after 1870, as new transport links improved access to Quito and Guayaquil. The association of these and other changes with regional population trends and their combined influence on urban development depended on town functions. The colonial towns were fundamentally agro-administrative, with Latacunga initially distinguished by an industrial function. The decay and eventual loss of this industrial function, combined with natural disasters, contributed to Latacunga's relative decline since 1740. After Independence, Ambato's growth was enhanced by its thriving market function, based on its location in an area of cashcrop oriented small holdings. In the twentieth century, associated with the town's site advantages for the generation of electricity, Ambato has experienced greater industrialization than its neighbours. Industry and commerce together were the foundation of Ambato's growth into the largest Central Sierran town, and the key to differential urban development in the modern era.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available