domingo, 23 de septiembre de 2012

Barrio Ingles de Caballito / British Quarters

Hay varias zonas de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires, comunmente denominadas como barrios Ingleses, usualmente construidos por trabajadores británicos, en su mayoría de la industria ferroviaria, a pricipios del Siglo XX. Uno de estos barrios y a mi entender, el más emblemático es el barrio Ingles de Caballito. El barrio se desarrollo en consecuencia de la intervención del Banco El Hogar Argentino, alrededor del año 1923. En su época, este banco se dedicaba a la promoción inmobiliaria y a otorgar créditos hipotecarios.

Existe cierta controversia con respecto a quienes fueron sus primeros habitantes Se debate si realmente fueron británicos del Ferrocarril Oeste o argentinos de clase media quienes adquirieron las propiedades, por intermedio del Banco. Hasta el momento no he podido constatar fehacientemente ni lo uno ni lo otro, aunque sobran opiniones de ambos bandos. 

Se encuentra delimitado por las calles Valle, Del Barco Centenera, Emilio Mitre y Pedro Goyena. Sus calles son estrechas, en su mayoría adoquinadas. Se respira un aire de tranquilidad en sus escuetas 5 o 6 manzanas. La mayor parte de las propiedades son de estilo Tudor o Georgiano. Llama la atención en su "entrada" encontrarse con un cartel que reza: "zona custodiada por la policia". ¿Quiere decir esto que el resto de la Ciudad no lo esta? A veces se siente como si fuera de esa manera...

There are a number of areas in the city of Buenos Aires which are commonly known as British Neighbourhoods. These were usually built by British workers, specifically working in the railway industry in the early 1900´s. My favourite one and probably the most emblematic one is the British Neighbourhood in Caballito. The area was built with the support of the Banco El Hogar Argentino, around the year 1923. Back then, that bank (which no longer exists) used to focus on real estate development and mortgages.

 No one is really sure about the origins of the neighbourhood. Some people claim that its first inhabitants were the higher management of the Ferrocarril Oeste, which were all British citizens. Others claim that the first dwellers were middle class argentines who managed to purchase the properties with assistance of the Banco El Hogar Argentino. I´ve heard both sides of the story and haven´t been able to decide which one is true so far!


Its located between the streets Valle, Del Barco Centenera, Pedro Goyena and Emilio Mitre. The streets are narrow and most of its streets are made of cobbled stones. Its an incredibly calm and quiet place. Most of the properties were constructed in a Tudor or Georgian style. I´ve always found quite disturbing the fact that there is a sign at the entrance to the neighbourhood that states that the area is protected by the Police. Does that mean that the rest of the city is not protected by the Police? no one has been able to give me a straight and coherent response to that.