Minor Urban Development
Jingrong Zhao
Bustamante, Nuevo León


Series overview

Along the railroad from Monterrey, Nuevo Leon to Laredo, Texas there are about twenty-three railroad stations according to the 1916 Railroad Map of Mexico, most of which served as stops along the railroad and locations for steam engines to refill their water tanks. The stations are approximately seven miles from each other. Whether existing before the railroad came or developed after the arrival of the railroad, there were many small towns along this railroad corridor. Some of these towns still retain their historic turn-of-the-century railroad stations and have remained modest hubs for industrial or agricultural activity.

According to maps from the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), there were about fourteen small towns existing in the 1970s along the railroad between Monterrey and Laredo. These include Camarón, Anáhuac, Lampazos de Naranjo, Candela, Bustamante, Villaldama, El Potrero, El Álamo, Ojasé, Los Villarreales, Los Morales, Salinas Victoria, Emiliano Zapata, and Ciudad Satélite del Norte. Among these, six of them - Camarón, Anáhuac, Lampazos de Naranjo, Ciudad de Villaldama, El Álamo, and Salinas Victoria - have railroad stations located in their urban areas, while in other towns the stations are certain distance away from the towns and are mostly connected to town by highways and arterial roads. 

While older urban plat maps of these locations are not available, maps from the 1970s can be compared with the built footprint of these towns today to discern their growth in the second half of the twentieth century. These comparisons shows some interesting patterns: of the six towns with urban railroad stations, the town of Camarón has become a ghost town today, the town of El Álamo shows little growth, and the towns of Anáhuac, Lampazos de Naranjo, Villaldama and Salinas Victoria show vast growth as each of them is the seat of their own municipality. Of the other eight towns, Bustamante, Los Villarreales, Los Morales, Emiliano Zapata and Ciudad Satélite del Norte show modest growth likely related to improved transportation connections, while urban growth is not so evident in the towns of Candela, El Potrero and Ojasé. 


Other places in the series:

Anahuac, Nuevo León

Bustamante, Nuevo León

Camaron, Nuevo León

Candela, Nuevo León

El Álamo (Estación Álamo), Nuevo León

El Potrero, Nuevo León

Lampazos de Naranjo, Nuevo León

Los Villarreales, Nuevo León and Los Morales, Nuevo León

Ojasé, Nuevo León

Salinas Victoria, Nuevo León

Villaldama, Nuevo León

Emiliano Zapata & Ciudad Satélite del Norte, Nuevo León