Sunday, September 12, 2010

Monterrey Keeps Growing

Talk about population density. Yesterday afternoon we went into town to watch the Clasico between Monterrey's two teams and to have a cookout. I was just amazed how much the city continues to grow.

Builders are now reclaiming areas that were once dominated by small factories and have since moved out of the city to industrial parks (we now have 57) or were taken over by larger companies. The areas had become run down and forgotten. So it has really vitalized the city in many good ways. Now there are big shopping centers and gated communities right in the middle of the city with modern names such as Centrica which houses three gated areas; condos, apartments and residences all with fountains at the entrance, security guards and large gree areas and parkways. Walmarts, VIPs, Office Depots and shopping malls are all within walking distance.

Taken from one of the many new hilltop communities

Also, high rise towers now cover the hillsides as people are moving up instead of out. There is no lack of construction work here, nor are there problems finding jobs. Monterrey's unemployment rate in the formal market is less than 5%. Everyone who went to the game last night works, has a new house, drove a car to party and the kids are all in school. These aren't all college grads either but hard working people who fall into the middle and lower-middle class.

The new fashion, high rise condos with underground parking, pool and gym.

After the party, we stayed at a friend's house. She lost her partner last year to cervical cancer. They had purchased a house in one of these gated communities. She has since moved back to take care of her aging and ill mother. The house is furnished and sits empty so Juan stays there during the week to eliminate the drive back and forth. Apart from having to drive through some dumpy neighborhoods you drive up what I call a small mountain. There you find gates, guards and cameras. With a swipe of a card and a wave you drive into another world just like the one I described above. Within the gates are three other gated communities. We reach ours and swipe the card again and the guards greets us with a howdy do.

The houses are quite nice, built on very small lots but you do have a two-car garage and walkways between the houses with a small patio. Some neighbors have opted to purchase a house with an empty lot next door. These are all 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath and are about 1400 sq feet and sell for 850,000 pesos. You pay a small HOA fee each month. The views are very nice. I guess I could live there but it is the density of the city and the traffic and noise which just really turns me off. I did enjoy the newness of everything and the order within the community. No noise after 11 p.m. on weekends, no unsightly stuff sitting around. You get the picture.
Model homes where we spent the night.

Monterrey has outgrown me or I have just gotten used to large open spaces. My comment this morning was that if I had to, I could live in the city but I would prefer a small apartment in an upper-class neighborhood. That would be the only way. Forget that though, because then we are talking 160K (u.s.) to 500K (u.s.).

No comments:

Post a Comment