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Spanish Town Planning

34. "Fortified village" is probably too strong a rendering of the term plaza in English because it suggests an impregnable outpost built to withstand a major battle or interminable siege. The Spanish word plaza in English, which is more commonly associated with an urban space, suggests a town plan that is more social than defensive. This was not the case. See Bunting, Early Architecture , p. 63; and Bunting, Of Earth and Timbers Made , pp. 6, 17. [BACK]

35. The site of San Gabriel is marked today only by limited archaeological evidence. For the findings of a 1984 conference at San Juan Pueblo, see When Cultures Meet , especially pp. 10-38 and illustrations pp. 45-55. [BACK]

36. Mundigo and Crouch, "The City Planning Ordinances," p. 248. To situate a forum at the intersection of the two main avenues of the Roman town was not common planning practice, although towns following this model did exist. The parallels with the towns prescribed by the Laws of the Indies are thus limited because the plaza was always intended to create the center of the Hispanic town; from it streets extended. Although in spite of the seeming specificity of their language, the ordinances were ultimately ambiguous and open to both interpretation and adjustment to site conditions. In theory streets led from the midpoints of the plaza as well as from its corners, but in actual practice street planning varied considerably. [BACK]

37. "In 1584, finally, among a shipment of forty cases of books . . . four folio copies of a quarto edition of the 'Arquitectura de Vitruvio' arrived, as well as four copies of a quarto edition of the 'Arquitectura de Alberto [sc. Leon Battista Alberti]' and two copies of a folio edition of the 'Arquitectura de Serlio.'" Kubler, Mexican Architecture , p. 104. [BACK]

38. See Kubler, "Open-Grid Town Plans." [BACK]

39. Article 34. These and all subsequent ordinances are translated in Mundigo and Crouch, "The City Planning Ordinances." [BACK]

40. Article 35, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

41. Article 112, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

42. Article 113, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

43. Now used as a part of the Museum of New Mexico, the palace no longer represents its former architectural self, having been stripped of its original character and length by time and a restoration early in this century. See Shishkin, The Palace of the Governors . [BACK]

44. Article 124, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

45. Article 119, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

46. For an extensive discussion of the development of the plaza at Santa Fe, see Wilson, "The Santa Fe, New Mexico, Plaza." Although ostensibly about the style of Santa Fe, Johnson, "The Santa Fe of the Future," included plans of the plaza "as it is today" and "as it should be" (which is, it will be seen, how it once was). [BACK]

47. Article 122, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

48. Article 129, Laws of the Indies; Article 127, Laws of the Indies; and Article 126, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

49. Article 133, Laws of the Indies. [BACK]

50. Domínguez, The Missions , pp. 39-40. In his condemnation of the capital, Domínguez expressed views on the character of cities that underlay the Laws of the Indies, that is, a nearly direct correlation between the political and social entity and urban form. "Surely when one hears or reads 'Villa of Santa Fe,' along with the particulars that it is the capital of the kingdom, the seat of political and military government with a royal presidio, and other details that have come before one's eyes in the perusal of the foregoing, such a vivid and forceful notion or idea must be suggested to the imagination that the reason will seize upon it to form judgments and opinions that it just at least be fairly presentable, if not very good." The actuality of Santa Fe did not bear out this preconception, despite the exceptional setting. Domínguez termed the town "a rough stone set in fine metal." To provide a more suitable example, the friar cited the pueblo of Tlatelolco, a suburb of Mexico City. "Although a pueblo (a less pretentious title than villa) [it] has the very greatest advantages over this villa [Santa Fe]; not superficially, as one might suppose, but indeed in its actual appearance, design, arrangement, and plan, for in it there are streets, well-planned houses, shops, fountains; in a word, it has something to lift the spirit by appealing to the senses." At this point he rendered his verdict on Santa Fe: "This villa is the exact opposite, for in the final analysis it lacks everything" (p. 39). [BACK]

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