Ecatepec de Morelos

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Ecatepec de Morelos
House of Morelos Museum
House of Morelos Museum
Coat of arms of Ecatepec de Morelos
Autonomía, Unión, Trabajo (Autonomy, Union, Work)
Location of Ecatepec in the State of Mexico
Location of Ecatepec in the State of Mexico
Coordinates: 19°36′35″N 99°03′36″W / 19.60972°N 99.06000°W / 19.60972; -99.06000
StateState of Mexico
Metro areaGreater Mexico City
Municipal StatusOctober 13, 1877[2]
Municipal SeatSan Cristóbal Ecatepec
 • TypeAyuntamiento
 • MayorAngélica Gabriela López Hernández (2024-present)
 • Total156.2 km2 (60.3 sq mi)
 • Water0.00 km2 (0.00 sq mi)
(of seat)
2,250 m (7,380 ft)
 • Total1,645,352[1]
 • Rank9th in North America
3rd in Mexico
 • Density10,533.6/km2 (27,282/sq mi)
 • Seat
 • Metro area
Time zoneUTC−6 (CST)
Postal code (of seat)
Area code55
WebsiteOfficial website (in Spanish)

Ecatepec (Spanish: [ekateˈpek] ), officially Ecatepec de Morelos, is a municipality in the State of Mexico, and is situated in the north part of the Greater Mexico City urban area. The municipal seat is San Cristóbal Ecatepec.

The city of Ecatepec is co-extensive with the municipality, comprising 99% of the total population of 1,645,352.[1] It is Mexico's third most-populous municipality after Tijuana and the 16 boroughs of Mexico City.[1] It is also the most populated suburb of Greater Mexico City.

The name "Ecatepec" is derived from Nahuatl, and means "windy hill" or "hill devoted to Ehecatl (the wind god)." It was also an alternative name for or invocation of the god Quetzalcoatl.[3] "Morelos" is the last name of José María Morelos, a hero of the Mexican War of Independence. Saint Christopher is the city's patron saint, celebrated on July 25.[3]

Ecatepec is served by the Mexico City metro, by the State of Mexico's Mexibús bus rapid transit lines, and by Mexicable aerial cable car lines.

Points of interest include the Sagrado Corazón de Jesús, several colonial era churches, and the Morelos Museum in "Casa de los Virreyes".[3] Mexico's busiest shopping center, Multiplaza Aragón, is also located in Ecatepec.[4]


Sosa Texcoco, plane lands over Ecatepec de Morelos.

The municipality is located north of Mexico City.[5] San Cristóbal Ecatepec, the municipal seat, has governing jurisdiction over the following communities: San Pedro Xoloxtoc, Tulpetlac, Chiconautla, Ciudad Azteca and Villa de Aragón. It has an area of 156.2 square kilometres (60.3 sq mi)[6] and borders the municipalities of Tlalnepantla de Baz, Tecámac, Coacalco de Berriozábal, Jaltenco, Acolman, Texcoco, Atenco, Nezahualcóyotl, as well as the Mexico City borough of Gustavo A. Madero.

The human settlements in Ecatepec de Morelos are located in an elongated valley, spreading from the Valley of Mexico to Sierra de Guadalupe.[citation needed]

Flora and fauna


Most of the local flora and fauna live in the Sierra de Guadalupe, and consists of small mammals like mice, rabbits, gray squirrels and gophers; and birds, such as cenzontles and sparrows. There are no large animals. The flora includes oyamel pines, oaks, ocote pines, century plants, prickly pears, and zacatón (mountain grass).[7]



Aztec Era

The glyph for Ecatepec. Its name is represented by a hill (tepetl) and the face of the wind god (Ehecatl).
Statues of Mariano Matamoros, José María Morelos and Hermenegildo Galeana on the main square.

Remains of earliest human inhabitation of the area have been found on the nearby Cerro de Ecatepec (Hill of Ecatepec). The area was initially settled by successive waves of Otomis; however, because of the later arrival of Toltec-Chichimecas that dominated the rest of the Valley of Mexico, this area eventually assimilated to the rest of the Valley, ending with its domination by the Aztec Empire.[8] Ecatepec was an Aztec altepetl or city-state in the Valley of Mexico.

From 1428 to 1539, Ecatepec was ruled by a tlatoani (pl. tlatoque), or "speaker". The tlatoque of Ecatepec were closely related to the ruling dynasty of Tenochtitlan.[9] Notable tlatoque include:[citation needed]

Diego Huanitzin was made tlatoani of Tenochtitlan by Antonio de Mendoza, viceroy of New Spain.

During the Aztec empire, the Mexicas used the town to control trade routes going north.[3]

Spanish rule and Independence


Ecatepec was considered a "República de Indios" (Indian Republic) in 1560, allowing the village to maintain a certain amount of autonomy and keeping the succession of tlatoanis or chiefs. However, in the first part of the 17th century, this was changed to a mayorship, with the Spanish administrating, along with the communities of Zumpango and Xalostoc.[8]

National hero José María Morelos y Pavón was executed in Ecatepec in 1815 by the Spanish Army during the Mexican War of Independence. The house in which he was executed is now a museum, Museo Casa de Morelos.

The municipality was officially created on October 13, 1874.[3] On October 1, 1877, San Cristóbal Ecatepec was declared a village and "de Morelos" was added to its name.[8]

Contemporary events


Ecatepec experienced expontential population growth from 1970, as a result of rural migration to the Valley of Mexico. The seat was declared a city on December 1, 1980,[3] and by 2010, it had become the most populated municipality in the country. Population growth stagnated since then.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Ecatepec is the newest in the country, erected on June 28, 1995, around the Sagrado Corazón de Jesús Cathedral.[10]

In April 1995, the remains of a mammoth were found in Colonia Ejidos de San Cristóbal, where the ancient lakes of Xaltocan-Ecatepec and Texcoco came together and where the Aztecs build a dam to keep the fresh and salty waters separate. The bones have been tentatively dated to around 10,500 years B.C.[8]

In February 2016, Pope Francis celebrated Mass in the city in front of a crowd of 300,000. The Pope's message was one of encouragement and opposition to the violence and drug trade that permeates the region.[11]


City Hall in San Cristóbal Ecatepec.
Mayor Time
Luis Fernando Vilchis Contreras 2019–2024
Indalecio Ríos Velázquez 2016–2019



Almost all of the population (99.934%) of the municipality lives in San Cristóbal Ecatepec, the third most populous city in Mexico. There are also three rural localities in the municipality.[1]

Locality 2020 Census Population
San Cristóbal Ecatepec 1,643,623
Mesa de los Leones 1,043
Tierra Blanca 2a Sección (Ejido Ecatepec) 615
Vista Hermosa 71
Total Municipality 1,645,352



Ecatepec is an industrial center. Manufacturing, along with commerce and services, are the main pillars of the economy.[12]

Jumex has its headquarters in the city.[13][14]

Two regional shopping malls, Plaza Las Américas and Multiplaza Aragón (Mexico's busiest as of 2018),[4] both with multiple hypermarket and department store anchors, are located in Ecatepec.



Ecatepec, due to its population density, is one of the municipalities with the highest levels of infrastructure in the State of Mexico.



Ecatepec, due to its location, is a necessary path from Mexico City towards several other states in Mexico, such as Hidalgo. Its principal regional roadways are:

  • Vía Morelos: a continuation of Avenida Centenario, it starts in the limits with the alcaldía of Gustavo A. Madero and the municipality of Tlalnepantla de Baz. The road crosses several important industrial zones of Ecatepec, such as Xalostoc, Santa Calra, Tulpetlac, and San Andrés, among others. On Vía Morelos several factories are also located, such as that of Jumex, La Costeña, and Agromit. The road ends at the beginning of the Highway to Pachuca, or Avenida Nacional, at the colony of Venta de Carpio, Ecatepec.
  • Avenida Nacional: the road begins on the bridge of El Arte, and approximately ends at Avenida Palomas. This road connects with Avenida Hank González and communicates with the México-Tepexpan and Los Reyes Lechería Highways. The avenue continues until the limits of Ecatepec with Tecámac.
  • Avenida Central: also known as Avenida Central Carlos Hank González, it begins on the borders with Gustavo A. Madero, and it's the continuation of Avenida Oceanía and Avenida 608. The road crosses the entirety of the zone of Aragón from the Bosque de Aragón, through the colonies of San Juan de Aragón, all the sections of Valle de Aragón, Melchor Múzquiz, Fuentes de Aragón, Jardines de Aragón, and Rinconada de Aragón. Avenida Central continues after Aragón, crossing the following colonies of Ecatepec: Ciudad Azteca, Río de Luz, Industrias, Progreso de la Unión, Alfredo del Mazo, Valle de Ecatepec, Juan de la Barrera, Las Américas, Jardínes de Morelos, 19 de Septiembre, and ends at the Venta de Carpio colony, after crossing the Central de Abastos of Ecatepec, to which it owes the name "Central". Line B of the Mexico City Metro System and the first line of Mexibus run along this avenue. The Avenue is also a part of the Eje Troncal Metropolitano, which connects the south of the metropolitan area of Mexico City (Xochimilco) with the northern part (Ecatepec). Due to its extension, this roadway is often the site of several news reports.[15]
  • Avenida R-1 (o Vía Adolfo López Mateos): The avenue begins at the border with Gustavo A. Madero. Avenida R-1 is the continuation of Avenida León de los Aldama, and it crosses several industrial and habitational zones. It concludes at the connection with Avenida Central.
  • Anillo Periférico Oriente (o Boulevard Río de los Remedios): This roadway marks the southern limit of Ecatepec with Gustavo A. Madero and with the municipality of Nezahualcoyotl, and it is of great importance for the communication of Ecatepec and Mexico City.
  • Autopista México-Pachuca: This Highway begins in Mexico City, but has an exit at San Cristobal Ecatepec and the Circuito Exterior Mexiquense to exit around Los Héroes on the Lechería-Texcoco Highway. It also has a branch that heads to the archeological site of the Teotihuacan piramids.
  • Avenida 30-30 (o Avenida Revolución): This avenue is located in the San Cristobal colony of Ecatepec. It begins with a connection from Vía Morelos. The avenue is famous due to its explanada 30-30, where several bands have performed. This roadway communicates with Vía José lópez Portillo, which leads towards Coacalco de Berriozábal, Tultitlán and Cuautitlán Izcalli. The official name of the roadway is Avenida Revolución, but it is popularly known as Avenida 30-30 due to a hardware store named "30-30", which was the site of a public transportation stop.
  • Autopista Circuito Exterior Mexiquense: although the highway begins at the limits of Ecatepec with Anillo Periférico, it also has two exits towards Avenida Central, within the colony of Las Américas. This highway is frequently used by drivers to avoid traffic in Avenida Central during rush hour.


Ciudad Azteca metro and Mexibús BRT station
Ecatepec metro station logo

Ecatepec is served by Line B of the Mexico City Metro system, including stations Muzquiz, Ecatepec (a.k.a. Tecnológico), Olímpica, Plaza Aragón, and Ciudad Azteca.[16][17]

Mexibús bus rapid transit serving the State of Mexico serves Ecatepec with:

In 2016, a new form of public transportation started serving Ecatepec residents: Mexicable, an aerial cable car whose main purpose is to help residents get around faster (as opposed to being a tourist attraction), especially in areas with numerous hills and valleys without adequate bridges and viaducts. Mexicable Line 1, the first cable car built in Mexico as a form of public transportation, has a length of almost 5 kilometres (3 miles), 190 cars and it takes about 17 minutes to ride along the entire line.[18] Line 1 connects Santa Clara with La Cañada via Hank González station. At Hank González station Mexicable Line 2 runs to Indios Verdes, a main hub for bus rapid transit (Metrobús and Mexibús), city bus, pesero minibus, metro, and regional buses.

Ecatepec is located on Fed 85, the Mexico City-Pachuca highway, Fed 57/Fed 57D (Circuito Exterior Mexiquense), and Fed 132 (Ecatepec-Teotihuacán highway).

Sister cities

City State Country Reference
Caracas Miranda  Venezuela


Cuautla  Morelos  Mexico
Guadalupe  Zacatecas  Mexico [20]
Guangzhou Guangdong  China
Namyangju Gyeonggi-do  South Korea [21]
San Jose San Jose Province  Costa Rica [22]
Guarulhos São Paulo  Brazil [23]


  1. ^ a b c d "Censo de Población y Vivienda 2020 - SCITEL" (in Spanish). INEGI. Archived from the original on 26 January 2021. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Bando Municipal de Ecatepec de Morelos 2015" (PDF). H. Ayuntamiento de Ecatepec de Morelos 2013-2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 September 2015. Retrieved 18 August 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Historia de Ecatepec". Archived from the original on 7 October 2020. Retrieved 8 March 2008.
  4. ^ a b ""Multiplaza Aragón se consagra como el centro comercial más visitado de Méxiso en 2018" ("Multiplaza Aragón is recognized as the busiest mall in Mexico in 2018"), Fashion Network (Mexico)". Archived from the original on 19 July 2022. Retrieved 19 July 2022.
  5. ^ "Ecatepec de Morelos municipality" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 May 2016. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
  6. ^ "México en cifras - Medio Ambenciente - Estado de México" (in Spanish). INEGI. January 2016. Archived from the original on 6 February 2021. Retrieved 12 February 2021.
  7. ^ "Estado de México - Ecatepec". Archived from the original on 16 September 2020. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
  8. ^ a b c d "Enciclopedia de los Municipios de México Estado de Mexico Ecatepec". Archived from the original on 30 September 2007. Retrieved 8 March 2008.
  9. ^ Explorations in ethnohistory: Indians of central Mexico in the sixteenth century by H. R. Harvey, Hanns J. Prem
  10. ^ "Diocese of Ecatepec". Catholic Hierarchy. Archived from the original on 10 October 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2021.
  11. ^ "Pope Francis warns Mexico City crowd against 'dialogue with the devil'". The Guardian. 14 February 2016. Archived from the original on 7 October 2020. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  12. ^ "Ecatepec de Morelos". Archived from the original on 11 May 2021. Retrieved 13 March 2021.
  13. ^ "Contacto Archived 2014-02-09 at the Wayback Machine" (Archive). Jumex. Retrieved on May 27, 2014. "Antigua Carretera Mexico Pachuca, Km 12.5 Xalostoc Estado De Mexico, CP 55340"
  14. ^ "Aviso de privacidad" (Archive). Jumex. Retrieved on May 27, 2014. "[...]GRUPO JUMEX, S.A. de C.V., con domicilio en Carretera México-Pachuca KM 12.5, Colonia Rústica Xalostoc, Ecatepec de Morelos, Estado de México, C.P. 55340, México"
  15. ^ "Carlos Hank report – Noticias Carlos Hank". Archived from the original on 17 July 2023. Retrieved 22 February 2023.
  16. ^ "Ecatepec". (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 25 August 2012. Retrieved 6 August 2011.
  17. ^ Archambault, Richard. "Ecatepec » Mexico City Metro System". Archived from the original on 7 October 2020. Retrieved 6 August 2011.
  18. ^ "President inaugurates cable car system". Mexico News Daily. Archived from the original on 7 October 2020. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  19. ^ "The Medical Blog". Archived from the original on 11 February 2012. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
  20. ^ "Municipio de Guadalupe, Zacatecas - Ciudades Hermanas". Archived from the original on 29 April 2012. Retrieved 22 March 2012.
  21. ^ "Organización Editorial Mexicana". Archived from the original on 7 October 2020. Retrieved 28 August 2017.
  22. ^ "Convenios Nacionales e Internacionales". (in Spanish). San José. Archived from the original on 10 December 2021. Retrieved 25 January 2021.
  23. ^ "Cooperação Internacional". (in Portuguese). Guarulhos. Archived from the original on 11 June 2020. Retrieved 11 June 2020.