Benicalap Neighbourhood

Benicalap Neighbourhood in Valencia, Spain

Benicalap

Benicalap, a district in Valencia, derives its name from an old Muslim farmhouse mentioned in the “Llibre de Repartiment” as Benicalapech. The exact ownership of the farmhouse is not specified, but the Arabic prefix “Beni-” is typically translated as “children of,” and “Calapech” is interpreted as “high houses” in some sources.

In the “Llibre de Repartiment,” which documents the distribution of occupied lands and houses in Balansiya by King James I, several entries feature Benicalap as the first registered property in the Kingdom of Valencia:

  • May 1, 1238: Ramón de Tellet receives the farmhouse or “real” of Benicalapech with six plots of land around it, as well as houses in Valencia from rais Albuhaçen and the garden of Haron, a Jew.
  • April 17, 1239: Bernat Gilbert obtains three adjacent plots of land in Benicalapech from Abrahim Abinçalema, as well as five plots of land in a garden in Olarios previously owned by Lobo Alfachar Albaycin.
  • October 8, 1240: Gil de Bailo acquires houses adjacent to those of Guillem Gaucerà and a garden of five plots of land in Benicalapech. However, this donation is later revoked due to the failure of Ferran Peris de Pina’s squires to appear.
  • November 4, 1244: Miquel Peris de Vinyals, a knight, receives the houses of EYCA Amberraga, six plots of land in Nacarella (Benicalapech), and a garden of six plots of land in Roteros in Tolaya’s garden, son of Abeçola.
  • May 1, 1238: Ramón de Tellet is granted the Benicalapech farmhouse.

Benicalap remained an independent municipality until the late 19th century when it was annexed to the City of Valencia, likely in 1872 according to various writings. However, it is already mentioned as a municipality of Valencia in the 20th century. The district is bordered by Poblados del Norte and the municipality of Burjasot to the north, Rascaña to the east, La Zaidía and Bellar to the south, and neighboring towns of the West to the west. Benicalap is composed of two districts: Benicalap and Ciutat Fallera.

Benefits:

  • Rich historical heritage with traces of an old Muslim farmhouse.
  • Autonomy as a former municipality, contributing to a distinct local identity.
  • Proximity to Poblados del Norte and the municipality of Burjasot, offering opportunities for interaction and access to amenities.
  • Varied residential areas and neighborhoods catering to different preferences and lifestyles.
  • Presence of Ciutat Fallera, a district known for its traditional fallas celebrations.

Drawbacks:

  • Potential challenges associated with the annexation to the City of Valencia, such as changes in governance and administration.
  • Urban development and associated impacts on the district’s character and infrastructure.
  • Traffic congestion, particularly in more densely populated areas.
  • Limited availability of parking spaces in some neighborhoods.
  • Noise and activity levels, especially in areas close to main roads and the fallas celebration zone.

Benicalap combines a rich historical heritage with a growing urban landscape. From its ancient farmhouses to its modern neighborhoods, the district offers a range of residential options and convenient amenities for its residents.

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