Despite being involved in many wars during this period – French invasion under Napoleon in 1818, and two Carlist Wars on four different fronts (1835-36 and 1873-76) – economic development was overwhelming.
Bilbao, which up until then had consisted of Old Bilbao and the Old Town, needed both to grow physically and to reflect its economic expansion politically. Thus began, in 1870, an annexation process, first takin Abando, then Begoña, and later Deusto and Luchana (1924). As you can see, the city which we know today is a comparatively recent invention. Its rapid progress is reflected in the city’s architecture; many of its monuments were erected during this same period: Plaza Nueva, Arriaga Thetre, the Town Hall…

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