Laredo, Texas

Last updated
Laredo, Texas
City of Laredo
Laredo Coat of Arms.gif
Coat of arms
Nickname(s): 
"The Gateway City" and "The City Under Seven Flags"
Webb County Laredo.svg
Relief map of Texas.png
Red pog.svg
Laredo
Location within Texas
Usa edcp relief location map.png
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Laredo
Location within the United States
Coordinates: 27°31′28″N99°29′26″W / 27.52444°N 99.49056°W / 27.52444; -99.49056
CountryUnited States
State Texas
County Webb
Metropolitan area Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area
SettledAugust, 1755
Settled asVilla de San Agustín de Laredo
Founded by Tomás Sánchez
Government
  Type Council-manager
   Mayor Pete Saenz (D)
   City Council
   City manager Robert A. Eads (interim)
Rosario C. Cabello (interim)
  Police chiefClaudio Trevino
Area
   City 102.6 sq mi (265.7 km2)
  Land101.1 sq mi (261.8 km2)
  Water1.5 sq mi (3.9 km2)
  Metro
161.76 sq mi (418.96 km2)
Elevation
438 ft (137.2 m)
Population
(2012)
   City 244,731 (US: 80th)
   Metro
259,172 (US: 178th)
   Demonym
Laredoan
Time zone UTC−6 (CST)
  Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CST)
ZIP Codes
78040–78046, 78049
Area code 956
FIPS code 48-41464 [1]
GNIS feature ID1339633 [2]
Airport Laredo International Airport KLRD (LRD)
Interstates I-35 (TX).svg I-69W (TX).svg
U.S. Routes US 59.svg US 83.svg
Website laredotexas.gov

Laredo ( /ləˈrd/ lə-RAY-doh; Spanish:  [laˈɾeðo] ) is a city in and the county seat of Webb County, Texas, United States, on the north bank of the Rio Grande in South Texas, across from Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico. Laredo has the distinction of flying seven flags (the Flag of the Republic of the Rio Grande, which is now the flag of the city, in addition to the Six Flags of Texas). Founded in 1755, Laredo grew from a village to the capital of the brief Republic of the Rio Grande to the largest inland port on the Mexico–United States border. Laredo's economy is based on international trade with Mexico. Many major transportation companies have a facility in Laredo. The city is on the southern end of I-35 which makes it close to the manufacturers in northern Mexico. It has four international bridges and one railway bridge.

A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or civil parish. The term is used in Canada, China, Romania, Taiwan and the United States. County towns have a similar function in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, and historically in Jamaica.

Webb County, Texas County in the United States

Webb County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of the 2010 census, the population was 250,304. Its county seat is Laredo. The county was named after James Webb, who served as Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of State, and Attorney General of the Republic of Texas, and later judge of the United States District Court following the admission of Texas to statehood. By area, Webb County is the largest county in South Texas and the sixth largest in the state.

Contents

According to the 2010 census, the city population was 236,091, making it the tenth-most populous city in the state of Texas and third-most populated on the Mexico–United States border, after San Diego, California, and El Paso, Texas. [3] Its metropolitan area is the 178th-largest in the U.S. and includes all of Webb County, with a population of 250,304. [3] Laredo is also part of the cross-border Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area with an estimated population of 636,516. [4]

2010 United States Census 23rd national census of the United States, taken in 2010

The 2010 United States Census is the twenty-third and most recent United States national census. National Census Day, the reference day used for the census, was April 1, 2010. The census was taken via mail-in citizen self-reporting, with enumerators serving to spot-check randomly selected neighborhoods and communities. As part of a drive to increase the count's accuracy, 635,000 temporary enumerators were hired. The population of the United States was counted as 308,745,538, a 9.7% increase from the 2000 Census. This was the first census in which all states recorded a population of over half a million, as well as the first in which all 100 largest cities recorded populations of over 200,000.

U.S. state constituent political entity of the United States

In the United States, a state is a constituent political entity, of which there are currently 50. Bound together in a political union, each state holds governmental jurisdiction over a separate and defined geographic territory and shares its sovereignty with the federal government. Due to this shared sovereignty, Americans are citizens both of the federal republic and of the state in which they reside. State citizenship and residency are flexible, and no government approval is required to move between states, except for persons restricted by certain types of court orders. Four states use the term commonwealth rather than state in their full official names.

Texas State of the United States of America

Texas is the second largest state in the United States by both area and population. Geographically located in the South Central region of the country, Texas shares borders with the U.S. states of Louisiana to the east, Arkansas to the northeast, Oklahoma to the north, New Mexico to the west, and the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas to the southwest, and has a coastline with the Gulf of Mexico to the southeast.

Because Laredo is 95.6 percent Hispanic and Latino, it is one of the least ethnically diverse cities in the United States. When economic diversity, household diversity, and social class diversity are considered, Laredo is rated the 19th least diverse city overall out of the 313 largest cities in the nation. [5]

Hispanic Americans and Latino Americans are Americans who are descendants of people from Spain and Latin America, respectively. More generally, it includes all Americans who speak the Spanish language natively, and who self-identify as Hispanic or Latino, whether of full or partial ancestry. For the 2010 United States Census, people counted as "Hispanic" or "Latino" were those who identified as one of the specific Hispanic or Latino categories listed on the census questionnaire as well as those who indicated that they were "other Spanish, Hispanic or Latino." The national origins classified as Hispanic or Latino by the United States Census Bureau are the following: Argentine, Cuban, Colombian, Puerto Rican, Dominican, Mexican, Costa Rican, Guatemalan, Honduran, Nicaraguan, Panamanian, Salvadoran, Bolivian, Spanish American, Chilean, Ecuadorian, Paraguayan, Peruvian, Uruguayan, and Venezuelan. Brazilian Americans, other Portuguese-speaking Latino groups, and non-Spanish speaking Latino groups in the United States are solely defined as "Latino" by some U.S. government agencies. The Census Bureau uses the terms Hispanic and Latino interchangeably.

Texas A&M International University and Laredo College are in Laredo. Laredo International Airport is within the Laredo city limits, while the Quetzalcoatl International Airport is nearby in Nuevo Laredo on the Mexican side.

Texas A&M International University

Texas A&M International University, often referred to as TAMIU, is a public, co-educational, state-supported university located in Laredo, Texas. The university has a modern campus on a 300-acre (1.2 km2) site in Laredo, Texas. It is a Member of the Texas A&M University System which is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation. Located in Laredo, Texas, a crossroads of culture and commerce, TAMIU is a major regional educational institution of choices in the State's fastest-growing demographic area and home to over 7500+ students each academic semester. TAMIU offers over 70 undergraduate, graduate or doctoral degrees in the arts and sciences, business administration, and nursing in the four colleges of the University.

Laredo College (LC) is a public college in Laredo, Texas. Founded as Laredo Junior College in 1947, it is part of the Laredo Independent School District. As defined by the Texas Legislature, the official service area of LC includes the municipality of Laredo and all of Webb, Jim Hogg and Zapata counties.

Laredo International Airport

Laredo International Airport is three miles northeast of downtown Laredo, in Webb County, Texas.

The biggest festival, Washington's Birthday Celebration, is held during the later part of January and the majority of February, attracting hundreds of thousands of tourists. The Jalapeño Festival, Border Beer Fest, Stockmen's Ball, Princess Pocahontas Pageant, Mr. South Texas Luncheon, an air show, and two major parades are all held in conjunction with the Washington's birthday events.

Washingtons Birthday Celebration

The Washington's Birthday Celebration (WBCA) is an almost month-long event held each February in Laredo, the seat of Webb County in south Texas, that celebrates the birthday of George Washington. It is the largest celebration of its kind in the United States with approximately 400,000 attendees annually. The celebration consists of various festivals; a Society of Martha Washington Colonial Pageant and Ball, Princess Pocahontas Pageant and Ball, two parades, a carnival, an air show, fireworks, live concerts, "Fun-Fest" at Laredo Community College, and a citywide prom during which many of the Laredo elite dress in Colonial attire. Each year a prominent Laredo man and woman play the roles of George and Martha Washington. One of its main events, the Jalapeño Festival, has recently been named one of Top 10 eating festivals in the United States.

Jalapeño hot pepper

The jalapeño is a medium-sized chili pepper pod type cultivar of the species Capsicum annuum. A mature jalapeño chili is 5–10 cm (2–4 in) long and hangs down with a round, firm, smooth flesh of 25–38 mm (1.0–1.5 in) wide. It can have a range of pungency, with Scoville heat units of 3,500 to 8,000. Commonly picked and consumed while still green, it is occasionally allowed to fully ripen and turn red, orange, or yellow. It is wider and generally milder than the similar Serrano pepper. the Chile Pepper Institute is known for developing colored variations.

Pocahontas 17th-century American Indian woman

Pocahontas was a Native American woman notable for her association with the colonial settlement at Jamestown, Virginia. She was the daughter of Powhatan, the paramount chief of a network of tributary tribes in the Tsenacommacah, encompassing the Tidewater region of Virginia. She saved the life of Colonist John Smith in 1607, who was being held captive by her tribe, by placing her head upon Smith's when her father raised his war club to execute him.

History

Flag of the Republic of the Rio Grande.svg
A graphical timeline is available at:
Timeline of Laredo, Texas
Map of Laredo in 1892 Old map-Laredo-1892.jpg
Map of Laredo in 1892
Laredo Center for the Arts in the downtown square Laredo, TX, Center for the Arts IMG 7674.JPG
Laredo Center for the Arts in the downtown square
Though the facility has been closed since 1999, the marquee of the Plaza Theater in downtown Laredo has been renovated A citizens committee, including the restaurateur Danny Lopez, Jr., of the Danny's Restaurant chain, sought without success to establish a private-public partnership to reopen the Plaza as a live entertainment venue. In 2018, the city council sought private entities, non-profit organizations, and an architect to make the facility useful again. Plaza Theater, downtown Laredo, TX IMG 7673.JPG
Though the facility has been closed since 1999, the marquee of the Plaza Theater in downtown Laredo has been renovated A citizens committee, including the restaurateur Danny Lopez, Jr., of the Danny's Restaurant chain, sought without success to establish a private-public partnership to reopen the Plaza as a live entertainment venue. In 2018, the city council sought private entities, non-profit organizations, and an architect to make the facility useful again.

The European colonial settlement of Villa de San Agustin de Laredo was founded in 1755 by Don Tomás Sánchez while the area was part of the Nuevo Santander region in the Spanish colony of New Spain. Villa de San Agustin de Laredo was named after Laredo, Cantabria, Spain and in honor of Saint Augustine of Hippo. In 1840, Laredo was the capital of the independent Republic of the Rio Grande, set up in opposition to Antonio López de Santa Anna; it was brought back into Mexico by military force.

Nuevo Santander was a region of the Viceroyalty of New Spain, covering the modern Mexican state of Tamaulipas and extending into modern-day southern Texas in the United States. A history of Texas, commissioned by the U.S. government's Federal Writers' Project in 1934, noted that "The borders of New Santander did not stop at the Rio Bravo" ; and added that the borders "went north to the Nueces, near Corpus Christi, then west and north to the Medina, then south again on a line along Laredo to the eastern slopes of the Sierra Madres, deep in Mexico."

New Spain viceroyalty of the Spanish Empire (1535-1821)

The Viceroyalty of New Spain was an integral territorial entity of the Spanish Empire, established by Habsburg Spain during the Spanish colonization of the Americas. It covered a huge area that included territories in North America, South America, Asia and Oceania. It originated in 1521 after the fall of Mexico-Tenochtitlan, the main event of the Spanish conquest, which did not properly end until much later, as its territory continued to grow to the north. It was officially created on 8 March 1535 as a viceroyalty, the first of four viceroyalties Spain created in the Americas. Its first viceroy was Antonio de Mendoza y Pacheco, and the capital of the viceroyalty was Mexico City, established on the ancient Mexico-Tenochtitlan.

Laredo, Cantabria Municipality and town in Cantabria, Spain

Laredo is a town in the autonomous community of Cantabria. According to the 2008 census (INE), the municipality has a population of 12,648 inhabitants. In addition to Laredo, the municipality includes the villages of La Arenosa, El Callejo, Las Cárcobas, Las Casillas, La Pesquera, Tarrueza and Villante. Except from the last two, the other villages had been physically integrated into Laredo.

In 1846 during the Mexican–American War, the town was occupied by the Texas Rangers. After the war, the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo ceded the land to the United States. A referendum was taken in the town, which voted to petition the American military government in charge of the area to return the town to Mexico. When this petition was rejected, most of the population, who were Tejano and had been in the area for generations, moved across the river into Mexican territory, where they founded Nuevo Laredo. In 1849, the United States Army set up Fort McIntosh (originally Camp Crawford). Laredo was rechartered as a city in 1852.

Laredo is one of the oldest crossing points along the Mexico–United States border, and the nation's largest inland port of entry. In 2005, Laredo celebrated the 250th anniversary of its founding.

The origin of name of the original Spanish town of Laredo is unclear. Some scholars say the name stems from Glaretum which means "sandy, rocky place". Others state Laredo stems from a Basque word meaning "beautiful pastures". [7] [8] Laredo might also stem from the Latin Larida which means gull.

In 1946, the Plaza Theater opened in downtown Laredo, but it closed in 1999, when the municipal government purchased the property from United Artists. In 2001, the Laredo City Council authorized a feasibility study to determine what use the old theater might yet have. In 2003, a consultant recommended converting the Plaza into a multi-purpose performing arts center, with dance recitals, concerts, live theater, and occasional films. In 2006, the city received an economic development grant for renovation of the Plaza. By 2008, renovations were made to the theater marquee and blade design. In 2011, a public-private partnership was attempted by two Laredo businessmen, Danny Lopez, Jr., and Victor Trevino, Jr., but that initiative never materialized. In 2018, the city council authorized the solicitation of private entities and non-profit organizations to operate the theater. The council is also seeking input from architects for the concept and design of renovations to the structure. [9]

In 1954, Laredo faced a devastating Rio Grande flood, when the water reached 61.35 feet (18.70 m), more than 10 feet (3.05 m) higher than in the previous 1932 flood, which had also caused great damage. According to Laredo historian Jerry D. Thompson of Texas A&M International University, the 1954 flood was "the largest in ninety-one years and the second largest according to archeological records in the last three hundred years." [10] Many were left homeless for a time because of the calamity. Former Webb County administrative Judge Mercurio Martinez, Jr., recalls his father surveyed the depth of the water and advised residents to evacuate. Several downtown businesses had to remove their merchandise inventory or risk losing it to the rising waters. The flood caused the relocation of the Holding Institute. The international bridge was destroyed when it was struck by the floating railroad bridge, which had been hit by the debris of another bridge in Eagle Pass up the river. Photos of the flood by Teofilo Esquivel, Sr., are on the wall of a Danny's Restaurant on McPherson Avenue in Laredo. [10]

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma brought his Bach Project to the Juarez-Lincoln International Bridge in April 2019. [11] [12]

Geography

NASA satellite image of Laredo and Nuevo Laredo (2007) Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area.JPG
NASA satellite image of Laredo and Nuevo Laredo (2007)

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 102.6 square miles (265.7 km²), of which, 101.1 square miles (261.8 km²) of it is land and 1.5 square miles (3.9 km²) of it (1.37%) is covered by water. [13]

Location

Laredo is on the west end of the Rio Grande Plains, south of the Edwards Plateau, west of the Coastal Plains, and east of the Mexican Mountains. The area consists of a few hills and flat land covered with grasses, oaks, and mesquite.

Bodies of water

Notable geographic features are the Rio Grande and Chacon Creek's man-made reservoir, Lake Casa Blanca, in Lake Casa Blanca International State Park. The lake is 371 acres (1.5 km2) of land and 1,650 acres (7 km2) of water. The six major creeks are Chacon Creek, San Ildefonso Creek, San Ygnacio Creek, Santa Isabel Creek, Sombrerillito Creek, and Zacate Creek, all of which drain into the Rio Grande. Several man-made reservoirs include the San Ildefonso Creek Lake (second-largest reservoir), and the Sombrerillito Creek Lake (third-largest reservoir).

Nearby cities

CityPopulationDistance (km)
Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas 373,7250 mi
Monclova, Coahuila 198,819124 mi (200 km)
Monterrey, Nuevo León 4,080,329125 mi (201 km)
Reynosa, Tamaulipas 589,466130 mi (210 km)
Corpus Christi, Texas 305,215131 mi (211 km)
San Antonio, Texas 1,927,407154 mi (248 km)
Heroica Matamoros, Tamaulipas449,815167 mi (269 km)
Brownsville, Texas 183,046170 mi (270 km)
Saltillo, Coahuila709,671181 mi (291 km)

Climate

Laredo's climate is semiarid with hot temperatures in the summer and mild temperatures during the winter. The climate is considered to be hot semi-arid (Köppen: BSh). Its weather is affected by the Sierra Madre Oriental mountains to the west, the Gulf of Mexico to the east, and the Chihuahuan Desert of Northern Mexico and West Texas. Moisture from the Pacific is cut off by the Mexican mountain range.

Because of its geographic location, Laredo's weather can range from long periods of heat to sudden, violent storms in a short period of time. Laredo winters are cold by South Texas standards: with average daytime highs around 66 °F (19 °C) and average overnight lows of 43 °F (6 °C), even though temperatures may easily reach 90 °F (32 °C) even during winter when the wind comes from the south. Although snowfall is rare in Laredo, it occurred most recently on Christmas Eve 2004 (1.1") and December 7–8, 2017 (1.3 inches).

Laredo has an average high temperature around 101 °F (38 °C), and an average low around 77 °F (25 °C) during summer, and 21 inches (530 mm) of rain per year. As Laredo sometimes undergoes drought, a water conservation ordinance was implemented in 2003.

Prior to the data below, Laredo reached 115F on May 7, 1927 and June 11, 1942. Laredo reached 5F on February 12, 1899.aredo reached 98F on January 17, 1936 and January 18, 1914, tied with Zapata's 98F on January 4, 1997 for the U.S. record highest during a January. Laredo reached 101F on November 17, 1906 followed by 21F 4 days later on November 21. Laredo had 4.5" of snow from March 9–10, 1932 followed by 100F 10 days later on March 20.

Climate data for Laredo, Texas (1981−2010 normals, extremes 1965–present)
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °F (°C)95
(35)
103
(39)
105
(41)
110
(43)
114
(46)
114
(46)
113
(45)
111
(44)
110
(43)
104
(40)
99
(37)
95
(35)
114
(46)
Average high °F (°C)67.0
(19.4)
72.0
(22.2)
79.8
(26.6)
87.6
(30.9)
93.5
(34.2)
98.1
(36.7)
99.3
(37.4)
100.1
(37.8)
93.4
(34.1)
86.3
(30.2)
76.3
(24.6)
67.7
(19.8)
85.1
(29.5)
Average low °F (°C)46.1
(7.8)
50.3
(10.2)
56.9
(13.8)
64.3
(17.9)
71.5
(21.9)
75.9
(24.4)
76.7
(24.8)
77.0
(25.0)
72.7
(22.6)
65.2
(18.4)
55.2
(12.9)
46.8
(8.2)
63.2
(17.3)
Record low °F (°C)19
(−7)
20
(−7)
27
(−3)
32
(0)
45
(7)
58
(14)
66
(19)
61
(16)
49
(9)
28
(−2)
27
(−3)
11
(−12)
11
(−12)
Average precipitation inches (mm)0.90
(23)
0.94
(24)
1.12
(28)
1.42
(36)
2.49
(63)
2.23
(57)
2.01
(51)
1.88
(48)
2.93
(74)
2.21
(56)
1.19
(30)
0.88
(22)
20.2
(512)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)5.95.34.44.25.35.14.85.16.74.44.35.661.1
Source: NOAA [14] [15]

Demographics

Historical population
YearPop.±%
175785    
1770185+117.6%
1790 708+282.7%
1820 1,430+102.0%
1830 2,052+43.5%
1860 1,256−38.8%
1870 2,046+62.9%
1880 3,521+72.1%
1890 11,319+221.5%
1900 13,429+18.6%
1910 14,855+10.6%
1920 22,710+52.9%
1930 32,618+43.6%
1940 39,274+20.4%
1950 51,910+32.2%
1960 60,678+16.9%
1970 69,678+14.8%
1980 91,449+31.2%
1990 122,899+34.4%
2000 176,576+43.7%
2010 236,091+33.7%
2017260,654+10.4%
U.S. Decennial Census [16]
Texas Almanac: 1850–2010 [17] [18]
Source: U.S. Decennial Census [19]

As of the 2010, Laredo is the 81st-most populous city in the United States and the 10th-largest in Texas. According to the 2010 census [1] [20] [21] there were 236,091 inhabitants in the city.

According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the racial composition of Laredo was:

Ethnically, the city was:

Map of racial distribution in Laredo, 2010 U.S. Census. Each dot is 25 people: White, Black, Asian, Hispanic or Other (yellow) Race and ethnicity 2010- Laredo (5560424532).png
Map of racial distribution in Laredo, 2010 U.S. Census. Each dot is 25 people: White, Black, Asian, Hispanic or Other (yellow)

According to respondents' self-identification on the 2010 Census, the vast majority of Laredo's population is ethnically Hispanic (of any race), with 95.6%. Some 4.4% of the population was not Hispanic/Latino (3.4% non-Hispanic White, 0.2% non-Hispanic Black or African American, 0.6% non-Hispanic Asian, 0.1% from some other race (non-Hispanic), and 0.1% of two or more races (non-Hispanic)).

In the 2005 estimate, there were 99,675 males and 108,112 females. The average household contained 3.69 occupants. The population density was 2,250.5 people per square mile (868.9/km²).

Of the 60,816 households, 56,247 or 92.5% were occupied: 33,832 were owner-occupied units and 22,415 were renter-occupied units. About 62.0% were married couples living together, 18.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 14.7% were not families. Around 12.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.69 and the average family size was 4.18.

The city's population is distributed as 35.5% under the age of 18, 11.4% from 18 to 24, 29.5% from 25 to 44, 15.8% from 45 to 64, and 7.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 27 years. For every 100 females, there were 92.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $32,019, and for a family was $32,577. The per capita income for the city was $12,269; 29.2% of families were below the poverty line.

According to the United States Census Bureau, at a 2000 census, Laredo was the second-fastest growing city in the United States, after Las Vegas.

A study released in 2015 by the Martin Prosperity Institute of the University of Toronto in Canada showed Laredo as the most "economically segregated" smaller metro area in the United States. The wealthy tend to congregate in enclaves and gated communities, such as Plantation, Regency, Lakeside, Winfield, and Alexander Estates. Most of the poor inhabit neighborhoods known for overall and long standing poverty, particularly in the southern portion of the city. Mayor Pete Saenz, however, said development is underway downtown and in The Heights neighborhood, once the city's most affluent residential area. There are no de facto Anglo and African-American neighborhoods. The second and third cities cited in the study are Jackson, Tennessee, and El Paso, Texas. [22]

In 2016, Laredo was ranked the safest city in Texas for motorists and the 14th safest nationally. Its average annual car insurance rate is $1,515.76; the average years between accidents is 11.7. [23]

In 2016, the violent crime rate in Laredo dropped to 379 per 100,000 inhabitants, according to www.areavibes.com. The violent crime rate in Dallas was 694 per 100,000 inhabitants. In Houston it was 967 per 100,000 inhabitants.[ citation needed ]

Economy

Walker Plaza office complex in Laredo was built in the early 1990s by the family of South Texas rancher Gene S. Walker, Sr. Walker Plaza off Interstate 35 in Laredo, TX IMG 1808.JPG
Walker Plaza office complex in Laredo was built in the early 1990s by the family of South Texas rancher Gene S. Walker, Sr.
Laredo Federal Credit Union on McPherson Road Laredo Federal Credit Unon on McPherson Rd. IMG 7355.JPG
Laredo Federal Credit Union on McPherson Road
The former Cotulla Barbeque on McPherson Road at Taylor Street was closed, razed in 2012, and replaced by office buildings. Former U.S. President George W. Bush regularly visited the establishment when he was in town. Former Cotulla Style Pit BBQ, Laredo, TX Picture 1022.jpg
The former Cotulla Barbeque on McPherson Road at Taylor Street was closed, razed in 2012, and replaced by office buildings. Former U.S. President George W. Bush regularly visited the establishment when he was in town.

Laredo has four South Texas banking institutions: Falcon International Bank, International Bank of Commerce, BBVA Compass, and Texas Community Bank.

Laredo is the largest inland port in the United States, and Nuevo Laredo the largest in Latin America. This is due to their respective locations, served by Interstate Highway 35 / Mexican Federal Highway 85, the effects of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), dozens of twin assembly plants on the Mexican side, and dozens of import export agencies to expedite trade. In January 2014, the Laredo customs district processed "$20 billion in two-way trade with Mexico", about half that for the entire US with Mexico for the month. [24] Laredo is a shopping destination for Mexican shoppers from Northern Mexico. In 2015 the San Antonio Express-News reported the number of Mexican shoppers has declined due to drug war-related violence in Nuevo Laredo. [25]

Trade

View across the Rio Grande at Laredo, Texas (postcard, circa 1909) View across the Rio Grande at Laredo, Texas.jpg
View across the Rio Grande at Laredo, Texas (postcard, circa 1909)

More than 47 percent of United States international trade headed for Mexico and more than 36 percent of Mexican international trade crosses through the Laredo port of entry. [26] [27] Laredo's economy revolves around commercial and industrial warehousing, import, and export. As a major player in international trade, the Laredo area benefited from passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement, which has encouraged trade. The Laredo port of entry consists of four international bridges (with a proposed fifth one) crossing the Rio Grande into the Mexican states of Tamaulipas and Nuevo León.

Retail sales

Retail sales attract shoppers from Northern Mexico and South Texas. [28] There is one indoor shopping mall in Laredo, Mall del Norte, The Outlet Shoppes at Laredo, and another has not progressed past planning: Laredo Town Center, part of downtown redevelopment. There are dozens of shopping centers. The Streets of Laredo Urban Mall is an association created by businesses on Iturbide Street in the San Agustin historical district to beautify and renovate the area, which has a pedestrian scale. [29]

Labor market information

As of October 2007, Laredo's labor market was in the following industries by percentage of number employed: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (32%), Information (1%), Financial Activity (5%), Professional and Business Services (6%), Education and Health Services (15%), Leisure and Hospitality (10%), Government (23%), Mining and Construction (5%), Manufacturing (2%), and Other Services (2%).

Laredo has increased the number of non-agricultural jobs from 55,100 in January 1996 to 86,600 in October 2007. Laredo has had a higher job growth rate (2%-6.5%) than the state as a whole because of expanded international trade through the North American Free Trade Agreement. In 2007, Laredo experienced a job growth rate of 2.5%. As of October 2007, the Laredo unemployment rate was 4.1% or 3,700 unemployed persons, as compared to 3.9% in Texas statewide. This is a significant drop since the mid-1990s, when Laredo's unemployment was over 15%.

Laredo has had positive job market growth since the mid-1990s; setbacks in the mining (oil/gas) industry shifted a few thousand workers to other industries such as international trade and construction. Many large employers in the oil and gas industries shut down operations in Laredo and across Texas, and shifted to foreign countries. The same effect occurred in the garment industry (Levis and Haggar) along the Texas border area. Laredo lost its only garment-producing company (Barry), costing the jobs of about 300 workers. Laredo's strong job growth rate in retail and transportation services limited the adverse effects of long-term unemployment from the few massive layoffs of the late 1990s. Laredo's success with international trade is also a vulnerability; it depends on changes to Mexico's economy, that status of immigration laws (along with daily border crossings: shoppers and commercial trade), and terrorism. [31]

In 2014, according to the financial research company NerdWallet, Laredo had the worst pay for women of any city in the United States, with a large gender gap: an average annual salary of $24,700 for women, compared to nearly $35,000 for men. The gender pay gap in Laredo increased 25 percent between 2007 and 2012. Only the wealthy city of Frisco in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, had a greater pay gap within Texas than did Laredo. According to census reports, Laredo has a 30 percent rate of poverty. Laredo households headed by women with children under the age of eighteen have a 51 percent poverty rate. [32] By contrast, the San Jose, California, area, the heart of the tech industry, has an average pay of $56,000, ranking first nationally. [33]

Laredo Top Employers [34]

EmployerCategoryEmployees
United Independent School District Education6,179
Laredo Independent School District Education4,500
City of LaredoGovernment2,371
Laredo Sector Border Patrol Immigration2,000
H-E-B Grocery1,626
Webb County Government1,500
Laredo Medical Center Health care1,300
Texas A&M International University Education1,215
McDonald's Food1,200
Walmart Retail937
Convergys Call Center860
Doctors Hospital Health Care811
International Bank of Commerce Financial Services661
Stripes Convenience Stores Retail/Convenience337
Laredo Energy Arena Entertainment293
Falcon International Bank Financial Services292

Arts and culture

Annual celebrations

The Washington's Birthday Celebration (WBCA) [35] is a month-long event that celebrates George Washington's birthday. It is the largest annual celebration of its kind in the United States, with 400,000 attendees. It was founded in 1898 by the Improved Order of Red Men, local chapter Yaqui Tribe #59. The first celebration was a success, and its popularity grew rapidly; in 1923 it received its state charter. In 1924, the celebration held its first colonial pageant, which featured 13 girls from Laredo, representing the 13 original colonies. The celebration includes parades, a carnival, an air show, fireworks, live concerts, and a citywide prom during which many of Laredo's elite dress in very formal attire. The related Jalapeño Festival is one of the United States' top 10 eating festivals.

Jamboozie is held in late January in downtown Laredo as part of the Washington Birthday celebrations. Similar to New Orleans' Mardi Gras, the Jamboozie is a colorful event, with many people dressed in beads, masks, and flamboyant outfits.

The month of March is observed in honor of the Mexican-American labor organizer Cesar Chavez. A march, organized by the local League of United Latin American Citizens, is held downtown the last Saturday morning of March to remember Chavez for United Farm Workers, which in the 1960s and 1970s organized migrant laborers to obtain improved working conditions. [36]

Museums

Republic of the Rio Grande Capitol Building Museum Rio Grande Republic Capitol.jpg
Republic of the Rio Grande Capitol Building Museum

Republic of the Rio Grande Capitol Building Museum [37] is in the downtown historical district next to the historic La Posada Hotel. What was once the Capitol building now showcases memorabilia from the short lived Republic of the Rio Grande. It displays pictures, books, and furniture from the 19th century Laredo area, and offers guided tours for school-age children and adults year-round. Because of this Republic, Laredo had flown seven flags instead of the traditional Six Flags over Texas.

The Laredo Center for the Arts [38] is in downtown Laredo. The building houses three galleries: the Goodman Gallery, the Laredo Art League Gallery and the Lilia G. Martinez Gallery. The Center for the Arts, in the former City Hall offices known as "The Mercado", displays regional artwork and provides community events for children and adults. The Laredo Little Theater provides Laredo with live stage performances. The theater also hosts comedians.

Imaginarium of South Texas [39] (formerly Laredo Children's Museum), in Mall del Norte, provides a hands-on experience with science, technology, and art for Laredo's youth. A second museum is planned on the Texas A&M International University campus. [40]

The Nuevo Santander Museum Complex is composed of restored buildings of Fort McIntosh, a historical collection of photographs of the fort, the main guardhouse, which has World War I (1914–1918) memorabilia, and a science and technology museum.

Planetarium

The Lamar Bruni Vergara Science Center Planetarium [41] is on the Texas A&M International University campus. The Planetarium surrounds audiences in a dome with an accurate image of the night sky showing all the motions and cycles of the Sun, Moon, planets, and constellations in the sky.

Library

The Joe A. Guerra Laredo Public Library at the intersection of McPherson Road and Calton Street Laredo Public Library.JPG
The Joe A. Guerra Laredo Public Library at the intersection of McPherson Road and Calton Street

The Joe A. Guerra Laredo Public Library [42] was first housed on the second floor of the City Hall, now known as the Market Hall, in 1916. In 1974, the Laredo Public Library moved to the historic Bruni Plaza in downtown Laredo. In 1993, the citizens of Laredo approved the construction of a new main library at McPherson and Calton roads, which opened on February 1, 1998. On July 22, 2016, the structure was named in honor of Joe A. Guerra, a former member of the Laredo City Council known for his support for the library and a personal passion for reading. Council member Roque Vela, who first proposed the structure be named for Guerra, described the former councilman, who died in 2010, as "someone I looked up to for his unwavering commitment to public service. I am especially proud to know the library and reading were passions of Mr. Guerra." [43] The Laredo Public Library, which still uses the Dewey Decimal Classification system, has a 60,000 sq ft (6,000 m2). main library and two branches. The main library is in central Laredo; the Bruni Plaza Branch [44] is downtown east of Washington Street, and the Santo Niño Branch is in south Laredo. [45]

Two new libraries opened in 2014, one in northwest Laredo, the Fasken Library on March 14, and another in the south sometime in July. [46]

Market Plaza and Flores Avenue, Laredo, Texas (postcard, circa 1907) Market Plaza and Flores Avenue, Laredo, Texas.jpg
Market Plaza and Flores Avenue, Laredo, Texas (postcard, circa 1907)

Nightlife

The city is populated with both adult and family entertainment, such as bars, nightclubs, sports fields, movie theaters, family restaurants, and other entertainment venues.

Around the Springfield area, several restaurant/bars have been opened, including Agave Azul, Cosmos, Old No.2 and Lima Sol. This area has proven to be especially popular with college students.

Churches and architecture

San Agustin Cathedral San Agustin Cathedral.JPG
San Agustin Cathedral
Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Laredo, TX IMG 1856.JPG
Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church
Renovated St. Patrick's Catholic Church is on Del Mar Boulevard across from the Laredo Fire Department. Renovated St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Laredo, TX IMG 7354.JPG
Renovated St. Patrick's Catholic Church is on Del Mar Boulevard across from the Laredo Fire Department.
The First United Methodist Church near the intersection of McClelland and Guadalupe; the cornerstone from the 1916 building on Hidalgo Street downtown was moved to the current location in 1949. First United Methodist Church of Laredo, TX revised photo IMG 2005.JPG
The First United Methodist Church near the intersection of McClelland and Guadalupe; the cornerstone from the 1916 building on Hidalgo Street downtown was moved to the current location in 1949.

Most of Laredo's architecture is of Spanish Colonial, American, and Mexican flavor. Most of Laredo's Spanish Colonial style buildings are in downtown Laredo. More modern American architecture can be seen along Interstate Highway 35 as well as in the downtown area.

Heavily Roman Catholic in church affiliation, Laredo has impressive houses of worship. The oldest congregation, now San Agustin Cathedral, on the downtown historic plaza, dates to the founding of the city in 1755. The striking building we see today was begun in 1871. [47] Our Lady of Guadalupe is an imposing structure in Romanesque Revival Lombard (North Italian) style. It was designed by Leo M. J. Dielmann of San Antonio, a popular architect of Catholic buildings, and built for a Mexican-American and Hispanic congregation in the inner-city, at San Jorge Avenue and Callaghan St. Dielmann was commissioned by Church authorities to design churches for similar congregations in Houston and San Antonio. He also did the San Agustin parish school, and may have had a hand in the San Agustin church itself. [48]

Other Catholic churches of note include Blessed Sacrament and Christ the King, both in the Heights neighborhood, St. John Neumann Church at Hillside Road and Springfield Avenue, San Martin de Porres at 1704 Sandman Street near the municipal water tower, and the large St. Patrick Catholic Church on Del Mar Boulevard, founded in 1970 and renovated in 2009. The Catholic diocese office, the headquarters of Bishop James Tamayo, is on Corpus Christi Street north of Guadalupe Street. San Luis Rey Catholic Church at the intersection of Sanders and San Jose opened on September 16, 1951. Outside is a flowered prayer shrine. The congregation of the Church of the Redeemer, at the intersection of Main and Garcia streets downtown, observed its centennial on August 29, 2009. Its building is another work by Leo M.J. Dielmann.

Both the First United Methodist Church, in 1949, and the Christ Church Episcopal, were designed by Henry Steinbomer, a popular and prolific San Antonio architect who is credited with more than 100 churches and related buildings during the 1940s and 50s, from the Lower Rio Grande Valley mostly in South and West Texas, from the Sacred Heart Cathedral in San Angelo to Union Church in Monterrey, Mexico. [49]

Other Laredo churches include Baptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Assembly of God, Mormon, and non-denominational congregations.

The homeless and other indigent are served downtown through Bethany House, established in 1982 by Roman Catholic priest Father Charles M. McNaboe (1929–1996).

National Register of Historic Places sites

List of the tallest buildings

The former Hamilton Hotel, the tallest building in Laredo Former Hamilton Hotel in Laredo, TX IMG 1766.JPG
The former Hamilton Hotel, the tallest building in Laredo
Rank [50] Building NameHeightFloorsYear Built
01 Hamilton Hotel 150 ft (46 m)121923
02 San Agustin Cathedral 141 ft (43 m)N/A1872
03 Rio Grande Plaza 151975
04 Holiday Inn Laredo 141984
05 Laredo National Bank 101926
06 Senior Citizens Home 8
07 Laredo Medical Center 71999
08 Gateway Inn 6
09 Rialto Hotel 61925
10 Walker Plaza 51995

Laredo in multimedia

Film and television

Streets of Laredo is a 1949 western film starring William Holden, Macdonald Carey and William Bendix [51] as three outlaws who rescue a young girl, played by Mona Freeman. When they become separated, two reluctantly become Texas Rangers, while the third continues on a life of crime.

In the 1957 Christmas episode entitled "Laredo" of NBC's western series, Tales of Wells Fargo , series character Jim Hardie (Dale Robertson) must track gunrunners across the United States/Mexican border, a quest which keeps him from spending the holiday with friends in Laredo as he had intended. The episode stars Henry Rowland, Rodolfo Hoyos, Jr., Karl Swenson and Pierre Watkin. [52]

In 1958, ABC aired the second episode, "Ambush in Laredo", of the 17-part miniseries, Texas John Slaughter starring Tom Tryon, with Robert Middleton, Chris Alcaide and Judson Pratt, broadcast as part of Walt Disney Presents . [53]

The 1959 western film, Gunmen from Laredo, stars Robert Knapp, Walter Coy, Paul Birch, and Ron Hayes in the story of a man seeking revenge for the murder of his wife. He winds up in prison on a false murder charge, but the marshal allows him to escape to pursue the man who killed his wife. [54]

In the episode "Cactus Lady" (February 21, 1961) of the NBC western television series, Laramie , it is revealed series regular Jess Harper, played by Robert Fuller, had been nearly hanged by mistake in the border city of Laredo c. 1870 because of the McCanles gang, played by Arthur Hunnicutt, L. Q. Jones, Harry Dean Stanton and Anita Sands. In the storyline, the gang arrives suddenly in Laramie. [55]

From 1965 to 1967, NBC aired an hour-long western television series entitled, Laredo , with the actors Philip Carey, William Smith, Peter Brown and Neville Brand. A spin-off of The Virginian , Laredo, with elements of comedy, focuses on Texas Rangers in the border country. It is available on DVD. [56] [57] Laredo was also broadcast on weekdays on the Encore Westerns Channel, having filled the time slot previously occupied by double episodes of the ABC/Warner Bros. series, Lawman , which also co-stars Peter Brown. [58]

The 1983 film Eddie Macon's Run , based on a James McLendon novel, features John Schneider as Eddie Macon, who is wrongly convicted of mostly minor crimes. While performing at a prison rodeo in Huntsville, Texas, he escapes and heads for Laredo, where he hopes to join his family in Mexico. Carl "Buster" Marzack (Kirk Douglas) is a cop in hot pursuit of Eddie. Without transportation, Eddie journeys on foot. He ends up in the woods, where he is nearly killed. He meets Jilly Buck (Lee Purcell), a bored rich girl who agrees to help him. [59]

Lone Star is a 1996 American mystery film written and directed by John Sayles and set in a small town in Texas. The ensemble cast features Chris Cooper, Kris Kristofferson, Matthew McConaughey and Elizabeth Peña and deals with a sheriff's investigation into the murder of one of his predecessors. The movie was filmed in Del Rio, Eagle Pass, and Laredo. [60]

The 2011 series, Bordertown: Laredo, is a 10-episode documentary on the Arts and Entertainment Network based on the work of the narcotics unit of the Laredo Police Department. [61]

Music

Laredo has been the subject of several songs in popular culture. One of the most popular songs is the "Streets of Laredo", originally known as "A Cowboy's Lament" and written by Frank H. Maynard, who lived mostly in Colorado. It has been recorded by artists such as Johnny Cash, Marty Robbins, Waylon Jennings, John Cale, Roy Rogers and Prefab Sprout (who also made a lyrical reference to Laredo in an early song, Cue Fanfare), and is even featured in a Charlie's Angels episode ("Pretty Angels all in a Row", Season 2, Episode 3). On October 28, 1958, in the episode "The Ghost" of the ABC/WB western series, Sugarfoot , "The Streets of Laredo" is performed by the child actor Tommy Rettig. [62]

The first song on Marty Robbins' 1966 LP The Drifter was "Meet Me Tonight in Laredo." The song described a young Comanchero who woos a young woman despite her family's disapproval. The couple leave Laredo together to start a new life in the Sierre Madre mountains. [63]

From 1959 to 1972, the six-member singing group, The Rondels dominated the musical scene in Laredo. Carlos Saenz Landin, the lead singer, left the group to work for the Dallas Independent School District but years later returned to Laredo. Lead guitarist Humberto Donovan served in the United States Marine Corps. The late Roberto Alonzo played the bass guitar. Sammy Ibarra, played the keyboard and composed the song, “Lo Mucho Que Te Quiero (The More I Love You).” He subsequently became a pastor. Singer Noe Adolfo Esparza pursued a college career and became a supervisor for Southwestern Bell Telephone Company. As of 2017, he was still performing with the oldies group, Los Fabulosos in Laredo. Joe Lee Vera served in the United States Navy and played drums for The Rondels. Several of Vera's brothers were drummers too. The Rondels packed the Laredo Civic Center Auditorium. Two other songs characteristic of the group are “Ya-Ya” and “All Night Worker.” With their disbanding, Juan Cisneros of Laredo recalls The Rondels "left a large void that will never be forgotten." [64]

Another popular song is "Laredo" by country music star Chris Cagle, who sings about Laredo having a positive influence on his significant other.

Ranked at the top of the charts in 1978 in several countries in Europe is Baccara's "The Devil Sent You to Laredo".

"Laredo" is a song from the album Infinite Arms, released by Band of Horses in 2010.

"Laredo Tornado" is a track from Electric Light Orchestra's 1974 concept album Eldorado. It uses the idea of missing the 'happy hunting grounds' of Laredo as a metaphor for the protagonist's loss of his dream-world.

Joe Ely has a song and album entitled "Letter to Laredo".

Sports

Current teams

Laredo Heat

The Laredo Heat is a United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League team. The team's home stadium is the Texas A&M International University Soccer Complex. The team was founded in 2004. In the 2006 season, the Laredo Heat finished Runner-up yet made it only to the first round of the Open Cup. In the 2007 season, the Laredo Heat were the Southern Conference champions and won the PDL Championship. The Heat were on hiatus for the 2016 and 2017 seasons. [65] In November 2017, the Heat announced they will be an expansion team of the National Premier Soccer League in 2018. [66] [67]

Defunct teams

ClubSportLeagueVenueChampionshipsYears Active
Laredo Apaches Baseball Texas–Louisiana League Veterans Field01995
Laredo Broncos Baseball United League Baseball Veterans Field02006–10
Laredo Bucks Ice hockey Central Hockey League Laredo Energy Arena 22002–12
Laredo Bucks Ice hockey USA Central Hockey League Sames Auto Arena 02018
Laredo Honey Badgers Indoor soccer Professional Arena Soccer League Laredo Energy ArenaNever
Laredo Law Arena football AF2 Laredo Energy Arena02003–04
Laredo Lemurs Baseball AAIPB Uni-Trade Stadium 12012–16
Laredo Lobos Arena footballAF2Laredo Energy Arena02005–07
Laredo Rattlesnakes Indoor football Lone Star Football League Laredo Energy Arena02011–13
Laredo Roses Women's Football Sugar N Spice Football League Uni-Trade Stadium2012–16
Laredo Swarm Basketball American Basketball Association Laredo Energy Arena2015–17
Tecolotes de los Dos Laredos Baseball Mexican Baseball League Veterans Field51985–2004
Toros de Los Dos Laredos Basketball Liga Nacional de Baloncesto Profesional Laredo Energy Arena22007–13

Laredo Honey Badgers

The Laredo Honey Badgers were a proposed professional indoor soccer team that was founded in April 2013, expected to make its debut in the Professional Arena Soccer League with the 2013–14 season. The team was to play its home games at the Laredo Energy Arena. [68] [69] The official name and colors (black and chrome) of the team were decided with fan participation. [70] However, after several delays the team postponed its launch and eventually ceased operations.

Laredo Lemurs

The Laredo Lemurs, a professional baseball team, played their first season in the independent American Association in 2012 with home games at Uni-Trade Stadium. They won the South Division in their inaugural season, but were eliminated in the first playoff round. The Lemurs won the league championship in 2015 but ceased operations after the 2016 season.

Laredo Roses

The Laredo Roses were a professional women's full contact football team in the South Texas Sugar N Spice Football League [71] that began play in the 2012 season. The Roses played their home games at the Uni-Trade Stadium. The female players used short-shorts and half-cut jerseys during games. [72]

Laredo Swarm

Laredo Swarm was a semi-professional basketball in the relaunched American Basketball Association. They started playing in 2015 in Laredo Energy Arena. The team was disbanded before the 2017–18 season. [73]

Stadiums and arenas

Laredo Energy Arena

Laredo Energy Arena, formerly the Laredo Entertainment Center Laredo Entertainment Center, Laredo, TX IMG 2019.JPG
Laredo Energy Arena, formerly the Laredo Entertainment Center

The Laredo Energy Arena, formerly Laredo Entertainment Center, is at Loop 20 and Jacaman Road. The LEA was strongly pushed to fruition by former Laredo Mayor Betty Flores. LEA was home to the former Laredo Bucks. The 178,000-square-foot (16,500 m2), $36.5 million facility seats 8,002 people for ice hockey and arena football, and up to 10,000 for concerts. It has fourteen luxury suites, four meeting rooms and a private club for two hundred charter members. It was completed in mid-2002 through an increase in the Laredo sales tax of .25 percent. Sports that can be played at the LEA include ice hockey, arena football, indoor soccer, basketball, wrestling, and boxing. The arena also hosts many events such as The Laredo Hunting and Fishing Show, Miss Texas USA, Laredo Home and Garden Show, and high school graduation ceremonies. Well-known artists and bands that have performed in the arena include Lil Wayne, Rihanna, Kesha, Pitbull, Flo Rida, Shakira, Enrique Iglesias, Tool, Aerosmith, Kiss, Elton John, Styx, REO Speedwagon, ZZ Top, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Ricky Martin, George Lopez, T.I., Ludacris, Cher, Hilary Duff Monster Jam and WWE.

Uni-Trade Stadium

The Uni-Trade Stadium is Laredo's newest baseball field. The stadium is near the Laredo Energy Arena. The project was approved by the city council and was voted in favor of (with 61.32% of the votes in favor 38.68% against) constructing it with money collected since 2004 by a .25 percent sales tax increase. There is a surplus of about $15 million. [74] The stadium will be home to the Laredo Lemurs.

Student Activity Complex

Entrance to the Student Activity Complex SAC Laredo Entrance.JPG
Entrance to the Student Activity Complex

United Independent School District's students use the Student Activity Complex on State Highway 359 for football, soccer, and baseball. Opened in the summer of 2002, it has the city's first artificial grass stadium. The SAC was also the home of the Laredo Heat. The capacity is 8,500 spectators.

Texas A&M International University Soccer Complex

Texas A&M International University Soccer Complex (also known as Dustdevil Field and TAMIU Soccer Complex) was built in 2006 and renovated in 2007. The soccer complex is on the Texas A&M International University campus. The complex has two soccer stadiums with a seating capacity of four thousand each. The Dustdevil Field is the new home stadium to the 2007 champion team Laredo Heat member of the United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League (PDL) and the TAMIU Dustdevils women and men's soccer teams member of the Heartland Conference, NCAA Division II. [75]

Shirley Field

The original Shirley Field was next to the Civic Center and R&T Martin High School on San Bernardo Avenue. It was built in 1937, along with Martin High School. Shirley Field was the location for outdoor athletics for Laredo Independent School District and also hosts the annual Border Olympics events. It seats up to about 6,000 fans with additional seating at the 2 endzones. Professional Mexican soccer teams have played various exhibition games here, noting the real grass allows for "better" soccer games. The various sports played on the stadium are football, soccer and track & field events. Major renovations are slated for this historic stadium. In November 2009 Shirley Field was demolished and was rebuilt by the 2011 football season. The total cost of the reconstruction was $12,000,000 and it now seats 8,000 fans and features artificial turf. [76]

Krueger Field

Krueger Field is in north Laredo and is owned by United Independent School District. The stadium has a capacity of 5,000 and is used to play football and soccer high school games. It is home to United High School's and John B. Alexander High School's football and soccer teams.

Veterans Field

Veterans Field is a 5,000 seat baseball park which was known as West Martin Field. Major renovation is happening to update the 1950 ball park. Veterans Field was also the home to the five-time champion Mexican Baseball League team Tecolotes de los Dos Laredos from 1985 to 2003. Veterans Field is also home to the Texas A&M International University's Heartland Conference NCAA Division II Dustdevils baseball team.

Laredo Civic Center

Prior to the construction of the Laredo Energy Arena most major concerts and shows were performed at the Laredo Civic Center. The Laredo Civic Center complex has an auditorium with 1,979 seats and a banquet and exhibit hall with 1,635 seats. [77]

Recreational

Lake Casa Blanca

Lake Casa Blanca International State Park , [78] on Loop 20, has a 1,680-acre (7 km2) artificial lake along with cooking out, camping, picnicking, lake swimming, skiing, boating, and mountain biking. The most popular recreational use of the lake is fishing. A boat ramp and fishing pier is available on the lake's eastern side. The lake is a popular destination for winter Texans. The park was operated by the City of Laredo and Webb County before it was acquired by the state in 1990 and opened in March 1991.

Golf

Laredo has three 18-hole golf courses: the Laredo Country Club, [79] the Casa Blanca Golf Course. [80] and Laredo's newest course Max A. Mandel Municipal Golf Course. [81] The Laredo Country Club is an 18-hole private course with 7,125 yards (6,515 m) of golf. The golf course has a rating of 74.6, a slope rating of 133, and has a par of 72. The country club was designed by Joseph S. Finger and was opened in 1983. [82] The Casa Blanca Golf Course is an 18-hole course with 6,590 yards (6,030 m) of golf. The golf course has a rating of 72.5, a slope rating of 125, and has a par of 72. The golf course was designed by Leon Howard and was opened in 1967. [83] The Max A. Mandel Municipal Golf Course is an 18-hole course with 7,200 yards (6,600 m) of golf. The golf course has a par of 72. The golf course was designed by Robert Trent Jones II Golf Course Architects and was opened in 2012.

Parks, recreational centers, plazas, and baseball fields

The City of Laredo owns eight recreational centers, thirty-four developed parks, twenty-two undeveloped parks or under construction, five baseball fields, and four plazas. The parks total area is 618 acres (2.50 km2). [84]

David B. Barkley Plaza

David B. Barkley Plaza flag Tallest Flagpole in USA.jpg
David B. Barkley Plaza flag

A memorial honoring the forty-one Hispanic soldiers who have received the Medal of Honor was built in Laredo, Texas in 2002. The plaza was named after the only Laredo Medal of Honor recipient David B. Barkley. The David B. Barkley Plaza has a bronze statue of David B. Barkley and an American flag measuring 100 ft by 50 ft and is 308 ft tall making it the tallest flagpole in the United States. [85] [86] The memorial is at 27°30′22″N99°30′8″W / 27.50611°N 99.50222°W / 27.50611; -99.50222 (David B. Barkley Plaza) . [87]

City of Laredo Shiloh Trail

Relatively new to Laredoans, this mountain bike trail is approximately 4 miles of single-track dirt trails, widening occasionally to double-track. Some technical parts make this trail challenging, but not impossible for beginners who can briefly walk their bikes before getting on their way again. Thorned shrubs and cacti encompass bikers, so be careful! The trail is well-marked and improvements continue to be seen as the months go by. The trail is off Shiloh Road at the end of Livingston Road.

Government

Municipal government

Administrative headquarters of the Laredo Fire Department are on Del Mar Boulevard across from St. Patrick's Catholic Church. Laredo, TX, Fire Dept. IMG 7352.JPG
Administrative headquarters of the Laredo Fire Department are on Del Mar Boulevard across from St. Patrick's Catholic Church.

The Laredo city government is a strong city council – weak mayor system. The mayor presides over the eight-member city council, but he/she may only vote to break a tie. City Council elections are based on single-member districts and campaigns have no party affiliations. Municipal elections are now held in November (formerly in May) of even-numbered years. The municipal government is administered by the city manager hired by the city council. All city elected offices have a four-year term and are nonpartisan though most officials have a Democratic party preference or affiliation.

City council meetings are held on Mondays and can be viewed on the Public-access television cable TV channel or live online at Public Access Channel live stream.

The current mayor, Pete Saenz, was elected in 2014 to succeed his fellow Democrat, the term-limited Raul G. Salinas. In his bid for a second term, Salinas had in 2010 defeated then city council members Jose A. Valdez, Jr., and Gene Belmares. [88] Salinas also failed in a bid to unseat Webb County treasurer Delia Perales in the Democratic runoff election held on May 27, 2014.

List of mayors of Laredo, Texas
NamePortraitTerm startTerm end
William Franklin Alexander [89] 18521854
Bartolome Garcia18551855
Santos Benavides 18561856
Refugio Benavides18571857
Bartolome Garcia18581858
Refugio Benavides18591859
Tomas Treviño18601860
Juan Francisco Farias18611861
Bartolome Garcia18621864
Nicolas Sanchez18651865
Agustin Salinas18661867
Samuel M. Jarvis18681868
Agustin Salinas18661867
Hugh James18741876
Atanacio Vidaurri18771877
Rosendo Garcia18781878
Julian Garcia18791880
Porfirio Benavidez18811882
Dario Sanchez18831883
Porfirio Benavides18841884
Dario Sanchez18851885
E. A. Atlee18861890
C. A. McLane18911894
Andrew Hans Thaison18951895
L. J. Christian18961898
A. E. Vidaurri18991900
Amador Sanchez19011909
Robert McComb19101919
L. Villegas19201925
Albert Martin19261939
Hugh Cluck19401953
J.C. Martin, Jr. 19541977
Aldo Tatangelo 19781990
Saul N. Ramirez, Jr. 19901997
Betty Flores 19982006
Raul G. Salinas Laredo Mayor Raul Salinas IMG 1949.JPG 20062014
Pete Saenz LCC Trustee President Pete Saenz IMG 1950.JPG 2014

In 2015, the city council named Jesus R. "Chuy" Olivares (born c. 1959) as the city manager to succeed the retiring Carlos Villarreal. Olivares was paid just over $249,000 annually, which included a car and telephone allowance. He was formerly the city manager of Eagle Pass in Maverick County. [90] On May 15, 2017, Olivares suddenly retired as city manager when he became a target of an ongoing Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into widespread public corruption in Webb County. Olivares claims thirty-eight years of municipal experience in Laredo (where was formerly the parks director), Austin, and Eagle Pass. Mayor Saenz expressed support for the decision as one of mutual convenience for Olivares and the city. [91] The council then named the assistant city manager, Horacio De Leon, as the acting city manager. [92]

City council members receive a monthly gross salary of $1,000 plus $750 monthly for maintaining a home office, $150 per month for a city cell phone, and $750 monthly for fuel expenses. The annual total compensation is hence $31,800. [93] However, total annual compensation will increase to $50,000. The mayor receives about $61,200; that will rise to $75,000 a year beginning with the 2018 election. Since council terms are staggered, those increases begin with each forthcoming election cycle. [94]

On August 1, 2014, then city councilman Jorge A. Vera was arrested on a felony drug possession charge. He was accused of having earlier in the week offered cocaine to an off-duty agent of the United States Border Patrol and her friends outside a Laredo restaurant. First elected to the council in 2012, Vera faced a state jail felony (possession of a controlled substance) and a Class B misdemeanor (filing a false report). [95] Vera was subsequently indicted on both charges by a grand jury of the Texas 406th Judicial District Court. His arraignment was in the 49th District Court. Because Vera did not resign from the city council, a recall election was held on November 4, 2014. [96] By a wide margin, voters in District VII supported Vera's recall. Attorney George Altgelt won the special election to succeed Vera.

In March 2017, Ray Garner resigned after four years as the chief of the Laredo Police Department. He instead returns to his former position as police chief of the United Independent School District. Then city manager Jesus Olivares appointed Captain Gabriel E. Martinez, Jr., a 30-year veteran of the department, as the acting police chief to succeed Garner. [97]

State and federal representation

The United States District Courthouse is a relatively new building adjacent to the Webb County Courthouse.

The United States Border Patrol Laredo Sector Headquarters is at 207 W. Del Mar Blvd, Laredo, Texas.

The United States Postal Service operates its main Post Office at 2700 East Saunders Street south of Laredo International Airport. [98] Postal branches are downtown and at 2395 East Del Mar Boulevard. [99] [100]

The Texas Army National Guard armory is at 6001 E. Bob Bullock Loop 20 Laredo, Texas.

The Colburn Memorial United States Army Reserve Center is at 1 W End Washington St, Laredo, Texas.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) operates the Laredo Parole Office. [101]

The private prison operator GEO Group runs the Rio Grande Detention Center in Laredo, which opened in 2008 and holds a maximum of 1900 federal detainees. [102]

In March 2014, it was reported Laredo and Webb County have a child abuse rate at nearly double the state average. In 2012–2013, 515 child clients were served by the Children's Advocacy Center in Laredo, 105 for physical abuse and 360 for sexual abuse. Statewide, 9.3 percent of children have been victims of physical abuse, but in Laredo the rate is 17 to 21 percent. A special investigator for Child Protective Services said he now sees two to three cases per day of such inflictions. [103]

Education

Elementary and secondary

Newman Elementary School at 1300 Alta Vista Blvd., is named for the late businessman B. P. Newman and his widow, Peggy. Newman Elementary School, Laredo, TX IMG 1824.JPG
Newman Elementary School at 1300 Alta Vista Blvd., is named for the late businessman B. P. Newman and his widow, Peggy.

Two school districts, the Laredo Independent School District and the United Independent School District, and eight private schools serve Laredo.

The Laredo Independent School District [104] (LISD) serves the areas in central Laredo. The LISD high schools are Cigarroa High School, Martin High School, J. W. Nixon High School and the Laredo Early College High School. LISD also has three magnet schools: Dr. Dennis D. Cantu Health Science Magnet School, LISD Magnet for Engineering and Technology Education, and Vidal M. Trevino School of Communications and Fine Arts.

The United Independent School District [105] serves the rest of Laredo and northern Webb County. The UISD high schools are John B. Alexander High School, Lyndon B. Johnson High School, United High School, and United South High School. UISD has three magnet schools: John B. Alexander Health Science Magnet, United Engineering Magnet, and the United South Business Magnet. There are thirty-nine schools within UISD and more are under construction or development. United ISD is one of the state's fastest growing districts, serving almost forty thousand students and covering an area the physical size of Rhode Island.

Former downtown campus of St. Augustine Parochial School Former parochial school building in Laredo, TX IMG 1771.JPG
Former downtown campus of St. Augustine Parochial School

Several private schools also serve the city:

The city also has several charter schools, including:

Colleges and universities

Laredo is home to Laredo College [107] and Texas A&M International University [108] (TAMIU). The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio [109] has a campus in Laredo.

Laredo College is a two-campus institution which offers two-year Associate's degrees. The main campus is at the western end of downtown Laredo near the Rio Grande, on the site of the former Fort McIntosh. This fort played a major role in the development of Laredo, as it protected the community from Indian raids in its early history. Several of the old buildings at the fort were converted into classrooms, but after renovation programs nearly all of the campus structures are now modern. The smaller, newer second campus, Laredo College South Campus, is in south Laredo along U. S. Route 83.

Texas A&M International University Library TA&MIU.jpg
Texas A&M International University Library

The Texas A&M International University is a 4/6 year university that offers bachelor's and master's degrees. On April 22, 2004, [110] the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in Austin, Texas approved Texas A&M International University to grant its first Ph.D. in International Business Administration. [111] [112] TAMIU's College of Business Administration has been named an outstanding business school in The Princeton Review's "Best 282 Business Schools", 2007 Edition, and ranked third in the nation for the category: "Greatest Opportunity for Minority Students." [113] The university's campus is in Northeast Laredo along Loop 20. The university was an extension of Texas A&I-Kingsville and later the former Laredo State University. Prior to its current location along Bob Bullock Loop 20, the university was housed with the Laredo College downtown campus.

The University of Texas Health Science Center campus is in East Laredo near U.S. Highway 59 and the Laredo Medical Center. The campus is an extension university from UTHSC in San Antonio, Texas. The university offers doctoral degrees in the medical and dental fields.

Media

Newspapers

NameFrequencyLanguageCityWebsite
Laredo Morning Times DailyEnglishLaredo lmtonline.com
LareDOS (Defunct, 2014 [114] )MonthlyEnglishLaredo laredosnews.com
El Mañana / Laredo SunDailySpanish / EnglishNuevo Laredo/Laredo elmanana.com.mx / laredosun.us
El Lider Informativo DailySpanishNuevo Laredo elquiosco.mx
El Diario de Nuevo Laredo DailySpanishNuevo Laredo diario.net
Primera Hora DailySpanishNuevo Laredo primerahora.com
Última Hora DailySpanishNuevo Laredo ultimahora.com

Television

According to Nielsen Media Research, the Laredo region (which includes Webb and Zapata counties) is ranked 185th market by population size in the United States. [115] The first station to broadcast in Laredo was KGNS in 1956, followed by KVTV in 1973, then KJTB (now KLDO) in 1985.

Notably television networks missing from Laredo's airwaves are PBS and The CW. Laredo once had a full-power local The CW affiliate, KGNS-DT2, but on July 3, 2014 the affiliation switched to ABC. Prior to that KJTB channel 27, from January 1985 to October 1988 was Laredo's ABC affiliate. KJTB was later bought by Entravision and affiliated the station to Telemundo and changed its callsign to KLDO. Today KLDO is affiliated to Univision. Before KJTB, KGNS, an NBC affiliate had a secondary affiliation to ABC from its founding in 1956 through KJTB's founding in 1985. On November 6, 2013, KGNS reached an agreement to add the ABC affiliation. The ABC affiliate was to have been launched in February 2014 on KGNS's subchannel 8.2. But it was not until July 2014 when KGNS dropped The CW programming and added ABC programming. [116]

In December 2014, all Nuevo Laredo stations must turn off analog television broadcasting and broadcast only digitally. [117]

CH VC DT DTV Dish TWC Callsign Network Resolution City of LicenseOfficial WebsiteNotes
1717.117.1  99 XEFE La Imagen Familiar 1080i Nuevo Laredo xefetv.com  
 3.13.1    XHCTNL-TDT Imagen Televisión HD 1080i Nuevo Laredo imagentv.com  
 3.43.4    XHCTNL-TDT Excélsior TV SD 480i Nuevo Laredo excelsior.com  
 8.18.18810 KGNS NBC HD 1080i Laredo pro8news.com  
 8.28.2 159 KGNS-DT2 ABC HD 720p Laredo kgns.tv  
 8.38.3 1625 KGNS-DT3 Telemundo HD 720p Laredo telemundo.com  
     11 KLRN PBS Analog San Antonio klrn.org  
 10.1 CP 10.1 CP     K10QK-D CP CarismaTV SD 480i Laredo feypoder.com Construction permit expires 7/2014
44.14.1  14 XHBR Televisa Nuevo Laredo HD 1080i Nuevo Laredo televisa.com  
 7.17.1    XHLAT-TDT Azteca 7–HD HD 1080i Nuevo Laredo  
 7.27.2    XHLAT-TDT2 a + SD 480i Nuevo Laredo  
 14.314.3    KYLX-LP Testing HD 1080i Laredo  
 15.115.1    KLMV BVB SD 480i Laredo buenav.net  
 15.215.2    KLMV-LD2 Infomercials SD 480i Laredo  
 15.315.3    KLMV-LD3 Vida Vision SD 480i Laredo buenav.net  
 15.415.4    KLMV-LD4 Televida Laredo SD 480i Laredo buenav.net  
 27.327.3    KLDO-DT3 TBD SD 480i Laredo  
11.11.1  98 XHLNA Azteca 13 HD 1080i Nuevo Laredo tvazteca.com  
 1.21.2    XHLNA-TDT2 ADN 40 SD 480i Nuevo Laredo proyecto40.com  
 27.119.1272778.1 KLDO Univision HD 1080i Laredo kldotv.com  
 27.219.2    KLDO-DT2 LATV SD 480i Laredo latv.com  
 31.131.1  77 KXOF-CD UniMás SD 480i Laredo ketftv.com  
 31.231.239392.2 KXOF-CD2 Fox / MyNet HD 720p Laredo myfoxlaredo.com  
 39.127.339392.2 KETF-CD Fox HD 720p Laredo mylaredofox.com  
 39.227.4    AZTECA Azteca America SD 480i Laredo[] 
 40.1 CP 40.1 CP     K40NU-D Maranatha Church TV SD 480i Laredo Construction permit expires 10/2016
66.16.1  15 XHNAT Multimedios Plus HD 720P Nuevo Laredo multimedios.tv  
 6.26.2    XHNAT-TDT2 Milenio TV SD 480i Nuevo Laredo milenio.tv  
 6.36.3    XHNAT-TDT3 Teleritmo SD 480i Nuevo Laredo multimedios.tv  
22.12.1    XHLAR Las Estrellas HD 1080i Nuevo Laredo televisa.com  

CP: Construction Permit

Radio

According to Arbitron, the Laredo region (which includes Jim Hogg, Webb, and Zapata counties) is ranked 191st market by population size. [118]

AM radio

FrequencyCallsignBrandCity of LicenseWebsiteWebcast
530 WPMQ285 TxDOT HAR Laredo  
790 XEFE La Mera LeyNuevo Laredo  listen live
890 KVOZ Radio CristianaLaredo lanuevaradiocristiana.com  
960 XEK La GrandeNuevo Laredo xek.com listen live
1000 XENLT Radio FormulaNuevo Laredo radioformula.com listen live
1090 XEWL La RomanticaNuevo Laredo radiorama.com listen live
1300 KLAR Radio PoderLaredo feypoder.com listen live
1340 XEBK Mega 95.7Nuevo Laredo radiorama.com listen live
1370 XEGNK Radio MexicanaNuevo Laredo radiorama.com listen live
1410 XEAS Ke BuenaNuevo Laredo kebuena.com listen live
1490 KLNT Super TejanoLaredo klnt1490.com listen live
1550 XENU La RancheritaNuevo Laredo radiorama.com listen live
1610 WQA200 CBP Information Laredo  
Long range AM stations

The following Clear Channel AM stations can be heard in Laredo:

FrequencyCallsignBrandCity of LicenseWebsiteWebcast
680 KKYX Country Legends 680 San Antonio kkyx.com listen live
720 KSAH Norteño 720San Antonio  
740 KTRH Newsradio 740 KTRH Houston ktrh.com listen live
760 KTKR Ticket 760 AMSan Antonio ticket760.com listen live
990 XET La T Grande Monterrey   listen live
1030 KCTA KCTA 1030 AM Corpus Christi kctaradio.com listen live
1050 XEG Ranchera de MonterreyMonterrey rancherademonterrey.com listen live
1140 XEMR MR DeportesMonterrey  
1200 WOAI News Radio 1200San Antonio radio.woai.com listen live
1210 KUBR Radio Cristiana San Juan   listen live
1530 KGBT La Tremenda 1530 Harlingen latremenda1530.com  

FM radio

FrequencyCallsignBrandFormatCity of LicenseWebsiteWebcast
88.1 KHOY Catholic RadioReligiousLaredo khoy.org listen live
88.9 XHLDO Radio TamaulipasPublic Radio Nuevo Laredo tamaulipas.gob listen live
89.9 KBNL Radio ManantialSpanish religiousLaredo kbnl.com listen live
91.3 XHNOE Stereo 91Spanish ContemporaryNuevo Laredo xhnoe.com listen live
92.7 KJBZ Z93TejanoLaredo z93laredo.com listen live
93.7"XHNLT" PR Radio Estereo Uncion FMChristian RadioNuevo Laredo uncionfeypoder.com listen live
94.1 XHTLN Imagen / RMX LaredoTalk / ContemporaryNuevo Laredo rmx.com.mx listen live
94.9 KQUR Digital 94.9Spanish PopLaredo digital949.com listen live
95.3 XHLPZ La TraviesaSpanish Regional Lampazos
95.7 XHBK Mega 95.7Spanish ContemporaryNuevo Laredo radioavanzado.com listen live
96.5"XHTWO" PR Radio TwoNorteñoNuevo Laredo listen live
97.1 XHNLO La CalienteNorteñoNuevo Laredo mmradio.com listen live
98.1 KRRG Big Buck CountryCountryLaredo bigbuck98.com listen live
99.3 XHNK 40 PrincipalesTop 40Nuevo Laredo radiorama.com listen live
100.5 KBDR La LeyTejanoLaredo laley1005.com listen live
101.5 XHAS Ke BuenaNorteñoNuevo Laredo kebuena.com listen live
102.3 XHMW Stereo VidaAC/OldiesNuevo Laredo radiorama.com listen live
102.9none PR La Guerrera de la FronteraInternationalNuevo Laredo laguerrera.mx listen live
103.3none PR XRockClassic rockNuevo Laredo listen live
104.5none PR 2 BeatElectronicaNuevo Laredo
104.9 XHNLR Radio UATUniversity RadioNuevo Laredo uat.mx listen live
105.1none PR RN RadioSpanishNuevo Laredo rn105.com listen live
105.5none PR Mas MusicaSpanishNuevo Laredo
106.1 KNEX Hot 106.1Urban / Rhythmic Top 40Laredo hot1061.com listen live
106.5none PR Radio Voz NorteñoNuevo Laredo radiovoz1065.net listen live
107.3 XHGTS 107.3 Me GustaSpanish PopNuevo Laredo xhgts.com listen live
162.55 WXK26 NOAA Weather Radio WeatherLaredo noaa.gov  

PR :Suspected pirate radio stations since they are not licensed with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the United States or COFETEL in Mexico. [119] [120] Some pirate stations are suspected, due to the fact other licensed stations nearby share the same frequency, such as 106.5 Radio Voz and KMAE from nearby Bruni, Texas and 103.3 Radio 33 and XHAHU-FM from nearby Anáhuac, Nuevo León, each city less than 50 miles from Laredo.

Internet Radio

NameFormatWebsiteWebcast
Power Hits HD Classic rock powerhitshd.net listen live

Infrastructure

Health care

Laredo Medical Center, formerly Mercy Hospital, is the largest hospital in Laredo. Laredo Medical Center.JPG
Laredo Medical Center, formerly Mercy Hospital, is the largest hospital in Laredo.
Doctor's Hospital in Laredo Doctor's Hospital, Laredo, TX IMG 4149.JPG
Doctor's Hospital in Laredo
Laredo Specialty Hospital, near the Laredo Medical Center, handles certain patients requiring long-term care. Laredo, TX, Specialty Hospital IMG 6119.JPG
Laredo Specialty Hospital, near the Laredo Medical Center, handles certain patients requiring long-term care.

In addition to the University of Texas Health Science Center branch, there are five other principal medical centers in Laredo: the Laredo Medical Center, Doctor's Hospital, Gateway Community Health Center, Providence Surgical & Medical Center, and the Laredo Specialty Hospital.

Doctors Hospital [121] is Laredo's second-largest medical center. The hospital complex is over 250,000 square feet (23,000 m2), with 180 licensed beds on a 58-acre (230,000 m2) campus. Affiliated with Universal Health Services, it is on Loop 20 in north Laredo. The Doctors Regional Cancer Treatment Center offers comprehensive cancer services.

The Providence Surgical & Medical Center [122] is an ambulatory health care center in north-central Laredo and also owned by Universal Health Services.

The Gateway Community Health Center [123] is the third-largest medical center in Laredo. The health center's main building is 64,000 square feet (5,900 m2). The Medical center moved to its new $11,000,000 building in 2006. The main Gateway Community Health Center is in East Laredo, close to U.S. Highway 59. It also has three branches in the Laredo area: the South Clinic, El Cenizo Community Center, and Quad City Community Center.

Gateway Community Health Center services include:

The Laredo Specialty Hospital [124] is the fourth-largest medical center in Laredo. It is owned by Ernest Health Inc. and was founded by Elmo Lopez, Jr., on May 22, 2006, and admitted its first patient within hours of operation. The grand opening took place in March 2007.

Transportation

In 2016, 82.3 percent of working Laredo residents commuted by driving alone, 10.2 percent carpooled, 0.9 percent used public transportation, and 1.9 percent walked. About 2 percent of working Laredo residents commuted by all other means, including taxi, bicycle, and motorcycles. About 2.6 percent worked at home. [125]

In 2015, 6.5 percent of city of Laredo households were without a car, which decreased slightly to 5.9 percent in 2016. The national average was 8.7 percent in 2016. Laredo averaged 1.85 cars per household in 2016, compared to a national average of 1.8 per household. [126]

Air

Laredo International Airport KLRD Terminal.jpg
Laredo International Airport
Map of the Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area Laredo Metro Map.jpg
Map of the Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area
Tex-Mex Railway International Bridge view from Laredo Railway Bridge.jpg
Tex-Mex Railway International Bridge view from Laredo

Laredo is served by the Laredo International Airport. Daily flights are available to Houston (George Bush Intercontinental Airport) and to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. Tri-weekly flights to Las Vegas, Nevada are available. After Laredo Air Force Base closed in the mid-1970s, the federal government handed over the old air force base and property to the City of Laredo for a new municipal airport. From the mid-1970s until the mid-1990s, the airport used a small terminal for passenger airline service and several old hangars for air cargo and private aircraft. A new state-of-the art passenger terminal was built along the then newly constructed Loop 20 to accommodate larger jets and to increase passenger air travel through Laredo. Expansion of air cargo facilities, taxiways and aprons, air cargo carriers such as DHL, FedEx, UPS, BAX, and others have responded by adding commercial air cargo jet services. Laredo also has two medical helipads, at Laredo Medical Center and Doctor's Hospital.

Mass transit

El Metro is the public transit system that operates in the city with 21 fixed routes and Paratransit services, with approximately 4.6 million passengers per year. El Metro works with a fleet of over 47 fixed route buses, 2 trolleys and 18 Paratransit/El Lift vans. The El Metro hub is in downtown Laredo at El Metro Transit Center. The Center also houses Greyhound Lines and provides fee-based daily parking for downtown shoppers and workers.

Rural transit

Rural transportation is provided by the Webb County operated "El Aguila Rural Transportation" (the Eagle) bus services. El Aguila serves fixed daily routes from rural communities (Bruni, El Cenizo, Mirando City, Oilton, and Rio Bravo) to the downtown El Metro Transit Center.

International bridges

Major highways

Major highways in Laredo and their starting and ending points:

Major highways in Nuevo Laredo and their starting and ending points:

Notable people

Born in Laredo

Tom DeLay, the Republican House Majority Leader from 2003 to 2006, was born in Laredo. TomDeLay.jpg
Tom DeLay, the Republican House Majority Leader from 2003 to 2006, was born in Laredo.

Other notable residents

Sister cities

During the month of July, Laredo sponsors the Laredo International Sister Cities Festival, which was founded in 2003. The festival is an international business, trade, tourism, and cultural expo. All of Laredo's sister cities are invited to participate. In 2004, the Laredo International Sister Cities Festival received the best overall Program award from the Sister Cities International. [132] The following list is of Laredo's sister cities and friendship cities: [133] [134]

Friendship Cities

See also

Related Research Articles

Nuevo Laredo Place in Tamaulipas, Mexico

Nuevo Laredo is a city in the Municipality of Nuevo Laredo in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas. The city lies on the banks of the Rio Grande, across from the U.S. city of Laredo, Texas. The 2010 census population of the city was 373,725. Nuevo Laredo is part of the Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area with a population of 636,516. The municipality has an area of 1,334.02 km2 (515.07 sq mi). Both the city and the municipality rank as the third largest in the state.

KGNS-TV NBC/ABC/Telemundo television affiliate in Laredo, Texas, United States

KGNS-TV is the dual NBC/ABC-affiliated television station for Laredo, Texas and the Mexican city of Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 8 from a transmitter northwest of Laredo. Owned by Gray Television as a sister station to low-powered CBS affiliate KYLX-LD, it maintains studios located on Del Mar Boulevard in northern Laredo. KGNS can be seen on Charter Spectrum channel 10 and in high definition on digital channel 860 as well as on Dish Network and DirecTV.

Aldo J. Tatangelo, Sr. was a mayor of Laredo, Texas, who served from 1978 to 1990. He is often credited with having obtained the paving of the large majority of Laredo streets, some of which were being resurfaced on the day of Tatangelo's death.

Raul G. Salinas American mayor and businessman

Raúl González Salinas is a private security consultant, a businessman, and a retired Federal Bureau of Investigation agent who is the former mayor of Laredo, Texas.

KLAR is a radio station that serves the Laredo, Texas, United States and Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico border area. It broadcasts a Spanish-language religious format.

Gateway to the Americas International Bridge toll bridge

The Gateway to the Americas International Bridge is one of four vehicular international bridges located in the cities of Laredo, Texas, and Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, that connect the United States and Mexico over the Rio Grande. It is owned and operated by the City of Laredo and the Secretaría de Comunicaciones y Transportes. It is also known as Laredo International Bridge 1.

Juárez–Lincoln International Bridge

The Juárez–Lincoln International Bridge is one of four vehicular international bridges located in the cities of Laredo, Texas, and Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, that connect the United States and Mexico over the Rio Grande. It is owned and operated by City of Laredo and the Secretaria de Comunicaciones y Transportes.

Laredo–Nuevo Laredo Place

The Laredo–Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area is one of six bi-national metropolitan areas along the U.S.-Mexican border. The city of Laredo is situated in the U.S. state of Texas on the northern bank of the Rio Grande and Nuevo Laredo is located in the Mexican State of Tamaulipas in the southern bank of the river. This metropolitan area is also known as the Two Laredos or the Laredo Borderplex. The metropolitan area is made up of one county: Webb County in Texas and three municipalities: Nuevo Laredo Municipality in Tamaulipas, Hidalgo Municipality in Coahuila, Anáhuac Municipality in Nuevo León in Mexico. Two urban areas: the Laredo Metropolitan Statistical Area and the Zona Metropolitana Nuevo Laredo three cities and 12 towns make the Laredo–Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan area which has a total of 636,516 inhabitants according to the INEGI Census of 2010 and the United States Census estimate of 2010. The Laredo–Nuevo Laredo is connected by four International Bridges and an International Railway Bridge. According to World Gazetteer this metropolitan area ranked 157th largest in North and South America in 2010 with an estimated population of 775,481. This area ranks 66th in the United States and 23rd in Mexico.

Radcliffe Killam was a wealthy oilman, rancher, businessman, and philanthropist in Laredo, the seat of Webb County in south Texas. He was a particular benefactor of various educational and medical institutions. In 1997, Worth cited the Killam family as one of the largest landowners in the United States, with 200,000 acres (810 km2). Part of that includes the 125,000-acre (510 km2) Duval County Ranch west of Freer, which Killam purchased in 1994.

Downtown Laredo Place in Texas, United States

Downtown Laredo is the second main business district in Laredo, Texas. Downtown Laredo is the starting point for Interstate Highway 35 and State Highway 359. It is home to all of Laredo's high-rise buildings. Laredo's and Webb County's main government buildings are located in Downtown Laredo. Most of Webb County's National Register of Historic Places are in this area.

Texas A&M International University Soccer Complex was built in 2006 and renovated in 2007. The soccer complex is located in Laredo, Texas in the Texas A&M International University campus. The complex has two soccer fields with a seating capacity of 4,000 on one of them. The Dustdevil Field is the home stadium to the 2007 champion team Laredo Heat member of the United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League (PDL) and the TAMIU Dustdevils women and men's soccer teams member of the Heartland Conference, NCAA Division II.

Disappearance of Zane Plemmons, a Mexican-American photojournalist who does freelance work for the Sinaloa newspaper El Debate, occurred on 21 May 2012 in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico after covering a shootout.

Laredo metropolitan area Metropolitan Statistical Area in Texas, United States

The metropolitan area is the 178th-largest United States metropolitan area and covers all of Webb county, with a population of 250,304. It is also a part of the Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area with an estimate population of 636,516.

Ramón H. Dovalina

Ramón Humberto Dovalina, Sr., is the retired fifth president of Laredo Community College, a two-year institution with the main campus on the grounds of historic Fort McIntosh on the Rio Grande in his native Laredo in Webb County in South Texas. With service from July 5, 1995, until August 31, 2007, Dovalina left the position with two years remaining in his contract, much to the surprise of his academic colleagues. Under Dovalina, the physical appearance of the college was upgraded, the scholarship endowment fund increased from $100,000 in 1995 to more than $1 million in 2007, the institution advanced a 10-year master plan for new technology, and a $50 million South Campus was opened.

Ray Marvin Keck, III is the former president of Texas A&M University - Commerce. Prior to this position he was fifth president of Texas A&M International University, a four-year institution with certain graduate programs as well in Laredo, Texas, USA, a post to which he was initially appointed effective September 1, 2001. He is also a distinguished organist.

The following is a timeline of the history of the city of Laredo, Texas, USA.

References

  1. 1 2 "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau . Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  2. "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  3. 1 2 Bureau, U.S. Census. "American FactFinder - Community Facts". factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 27 August 2017.
  4. "World Gazetteer: America – largest cities (per geographical entity)". Archived from the original on 2007-10-01.
  5. "Study says Laredo is least racially diverse city in America". Laredo Morning Times . Retrieved May 12, 2016.[ dead link ]
  6. "Aldo Amato, "Plaza Theater: Future Glory Eyed: Investors willing to give it another try", Laredo Morning Times, April 9, 2014, p. 1
  7. Laredo Origin Archived 2007-08-03 at the Wayback Machine
  8. Laredo Origin Archived 2011-05-17 at the Wayback Machine (in Spanish)
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Coordinates: 27°31′28″N99°29′26″W / 27.524445°N 99.490593°W / 27.524445; -99.490593