THERMAL SPRINGS AND SOCIAL DISTRIBUTION OF GROUND WATER
Free (open access)
95 - 106
ALEJANDRO ACOSTA COLLAZO
Thermal springs are an essential source of water for certain towns. Since human beings depend on water, different ways to distribute it were developed. In Mexico, aqueducts became an important means to conduct water to society once the Spaniards decided to found new settlements in America, and through the years knowledge in architecture and urbanism have contributed to improve tunnels, water boxes, thermal baths, fountains and modern water infrastructure. A good example is the city of Aguascalientes – which means “hot waters” in English – located in the central part of the country. Hot springs have been used as a source of water since the 16th century, but nowadays water tunnel distribution systems show deficiencies in response to urban growth. The main objective of the paper is to analyse social ground water distribution in the city of Aguascalientes, from the Ojocaliente thermal baths being built in 1831 to modern day drinking water distribution. So, it’s through an historical analysis of Aguascalientes City, the use of a survey and a qualitative statistical method that we can understand urban morphology and the way inhabitants in a Mexican city perceive social ground water distribution. The way drinking water used to be distributed into the city is described in the paper. Also, the use of a correspondence analysis will be helpful to understand the perception that people have that water coming from taps isn’t clean now. This situation has given advantages to distribution of bottled fresh water recently. Social ground water distribution in Aguascalientes has contributed to shape the city since the 19th century, even though recently drinking water distribution is bottled and expensive. Also, publicity made abroad related to unclean water management, like: Don’t drink the water! has an impact on tourists and city visitors who distrust Aguascalientes ground water quality.
water distribution, hot springs, society, historic water supply buildings.