The Jiron de La Union, or the Jiron of the Union, is a pedestrian street located in the Historic Centre of Lima, part of the capital of Peru. For many years it was one of the most important boulevards of the city, often described as the most aristocratic, where many of the most affluent citizens of the city would meet. Subsequently, with the deterioration of the centre of Lima, the Jiron de la Union lost its aristocratic character and became completely commercialized.
The Jiron de la Union was built by Francisco Pizarro in 1535 the year of the foundation of Lima. It is located on the eastern side of the Plaza de Armas. It was not until the early 20th century however, that it was given its current name. In 1535, The founder of Lima, Francisco Pizarro, designated a lot on this street to contain the City Hall; the current city hall still retains that same location. It is also one of the roads that surrounds the Palace of Government of Peru. In 1862, with the adoption of a new system of nomenclature, the Jiron ceased to be the axis on which the city was planned on.
Thus, streets intersecting with the Jiron de la Union had two separate names, one for their west side and another for the east. In the 1970s, the third through ninth blocks of the street were restricted solely for pedestrian use. In the 1980s, the Historic Centre of Lima suffered through a period of decadence in which the economic recession and the increase of crime drove away visitors. At this time, the Jiron was converted into a commercial emporium with a great quantity of abandoned store property and a large amount of street sellers. It was not until the next decade until the reorganization of the historic centre took place at the orders of the mayor Alberto Andrade Carmona which allowed the Jiron to reactivate its economy.
Currently, the Jiron de la Union has returned to being a commercial centre however it has long lost its aristocratic character. The last change that has been made is the demolition of the concrete benches placed in the 1970s that were built with the intent to pedestrianize the road. These have been replaced with new benches inscribed with the coat of arms of each of the different departments of Peru.