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|Z11, -24.36 °S, 124 °E|
| Official Name:|
Ciudad y Puerto de Caracol
| Other Names:|
La otra, La despreciada
|Ciudad in the Ardispheric Federation|
|Federal Subject||Flag of Departamento del Sur Departamento del Sur|
|Mayor (Alcalde)||Ximena Ata|
|Airports||Aéropuerto Internacional Nicolás Jameson|
|Ferries||Terminal Unificado de Transbordadores|
|Passenger Rail||Commuter Rail 2 operators - 16 lines|
|Metro||MetroVC - 5 lines|
|Tram||2 operators - 6 lines|
Caracol is the second largest city in the metropolitan Villa Constitución region, and the fifth most populous proper city in the Ardisphere. While most think of it as a "suburb" of the capital just to its north, in fact historically Caracol dates from the colonial era and is several hundred years older than its giant sister city, and at one point in the early years of the federation, Caracol was the country's largest city.
Caracol's current population is about 304,000 inhabitants, in a land area of 133.9 km2.
Caracol has its own tram and bus systems, but this system is fully integrated to the regional transit system. Several MetroVC lines pass into or through the city, including lines 3, 5, and 11, while line 4 parallels the city limit with Villa just north of the line. The commuter rail "Black Lines" have their home station at Caracol's Pittsbourg station, extending westward to Calle 29 station and Central de VC station, and eastward to many suburbs and points southeast. The "Blue Lines" commuter rail operate on the Black Line trunk through Caracol as well, offering connection to other eastern suburbs and extending all the way to Ciudad Quiroga and Quentín di Battista on the federation's eastern border.
The metropolitan region's chief ferry terminal is also located in Caracol, in the Embarcadero neighborhood at MetroVC Line 3 Terminal de Transbordadores station. Ferry service to El Cabo, Sailtown and international locations is available.
Several important universities are located in Caracol, including the historic Universidad Autónoma Miscatónica in the Arkham neighborhood and the Universidad Yrigoyén in the Astarte Yrigoyén neighborhood.
Historically the city's economy is linked to its port facilities, as well as the refineries and chemical industry in the eastern districts. However, recent decades have seen a redefinition of the city's colonial core and formerly run-down canal districts as an arts-focused, knowledge economy magnet zone. Many colonial structures and warehouses have been converted to lofts and high-tech business offices, and the consumer electronics giant Saehan Group opened a chip plant in the Juan López Bogosian neighborhood in brownfields straddling the Ría del Fangal.
Caracol is reputed to be the most "laid back" city in the Ardisphere, with thriving arts, alternative music and literary scenes. Many "alternative" lifestyles can be found along its beaches and canals, including the famous Colectivo de Locos in the Zabalcunde neighborhood, which attempts to live an urban lifestyle "off the grid" in a kind of effort to recapture the pre-Civil War syndicalist currents of Ardispherian culture. Their street art, rooftop and streetside vegetable gardens, and ad hoc architecture have become a significant tourist draw, and was recently acknowledged by the mayor, Ximena Ata, as a "modo legítimo de vivir, que debemos celebrar." She has worked hard to ensure city services are extended (where desired - there are many that the Locos do not want), and passed a law altering the squatters-rights framework for the city in such a way that favors collectives of this sort.
The formerly gritty and industrial city has gentrified extensively, and the gleaming new office towers in the Pittsbourg neighborhood symbolize the city's capacity to reinvent itself.
Caracol has several sibling cities, as per the guidelines of Sibling Cities of the World: