Jessica Salas 7th Period

Heart of Mexico City

Zocalo, meaning 'base', is also known as the Plaza de la Constuticion. It was given this nickname by residents in the 18th century with plans of it being a bigger monument for independence but it was unrealized. The pedestal is the only thing left from it and it stands 220m tall and 240m wide. The ceremonial center of Tenochtitlan layed directly north east of the plaza. In the 1520s, Hernan Cortes paved the plaza with the ruins of Tenochtitlan. Today, the Zocalo is home to many of Mexico City's powers. On the east side is the Palacio Nacional, north is the Catedral Metropolitana, and south is the offices of the Districto Federal government. Many hotels and shops line the west side of the plaza for what is known as the Portal de Mercaderes. The huge Mexican flag in the center of the Zocalo is removed from the Palacio Nacional each morning and raised by the Mexican army at 8 am, it is then lowered at 6 pm.