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The first Spanish viceroy arrived in Mexico City fourteen years later.
By that time, the city had again become a city-state, having power that extended far beyond its borders.
The existing central place of the Aztecs was effectively and permanently transformed to the ceremonial center and seat of power during the colonial period, and remains to this day in modern Mexico, the central place of the nation.
The rebuilding of the city after the siege of Tenochtitlan was accomplished by the abundant indigenous labor in the surrounding area.
Many died from being crushed by beams, or falling from high places, or in tearing down old buildings for new ones.
Preconquest Tenochtitlan was built in the center of the inland lake system, with the city reachable by canoe and by wide causeways to the mainland.
The Spanish lived in the area closest to the main square in what was known as the traza, in orderly, well laid-out streets.
The Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral, the seat of the Archbishopric of New Spain, was constructed on another side of the Zócalo, as was the archbishop's palace, and across from it the building housing the City Council or ayuntamiento of the city.
A famous late seventeenth-century painting of the Zócalo by Cristóbal de Villalpando depicts the main square, which had been the old Aztec ceremonial center.
Clockwise from top: skyline of Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City Metropolitan Cathedral, Skyline of Polanco, Palacio de Bellas Artes, The National Palace, Angel of Independence and Torre Latinoamericana It is located in the Valley of Mexico (Valle de México), a large valley in the high plateaus at the center of Mexico, at an altitude of 2,240 metres (7,350 ft). The 2009 estimated population for the city proper was approximately 8.84 million people, According to the most recent definition agreed upon by the federal and state governments, the Greater Mexico City population is 21.3 million people, making it the largest metropolitan area of the Western Hemisphere, the tenth-largest agglomeration, and the largest Spanish-speaking city in the world.
Mexico’s capital is both the oldest capital city in the Americas and one of two founded by Native Americans, the other being Quito, Ecuador.