A Brief History of the Colina Neighborhood

On March 15, 1978, with the approval of a subdivison in the town of Nova Era, in the State of Minas Gerais, the Colina neighborhood was born.  Previously, this land was used primarily for animal grazing and was owned by Mr. Orlando Martins Carneiro. 
In planning the Colina subdivision, Mr. Carneiro carved out 319 building lots and named the new streets after the gemstones mined in Minas Gerais such as Chalcedony, Agate, Onyx, Tourmaline, Jade, Sapphire, Beryl, Amazonite, Hematite, Opal, Emerald and Alexandrite.  With the subdivision planned and streets marked out Mr. Clarindo José Carlos Moreira was the first person to build a house for his family in the new Nova Era neighborhood.
Although the new Colina streets were named after precious stones, it was the initial Colina residents however, who were precious people as these early Colina pioneers moved into the new neighborhood with unpaved dirt roads and no sewers, water or electricity.
After Clarindo and Osvalda Moreira, the intial Colina residents were:

Mr. Antônio and Nicolina Leite
Antônio and Mônica Rodrigues
José Leonardo and Maria Lica
Mr. Salvador and D. Luzia
Délcio and Cacilda
Tica and Lena
Pedro and Lúcia Tito
José and Solimar Wilson
João Almeida and Maria
Mr. Zequinha and D. Maria (Paremts Lau / Néia)
Mr. Tineco and D. Jazira
Silvio and Marta
Mr. João (DER) and D. Maria Yute
Walter and Eliete
Mr. Zé Machadinho and Mrs. Geralda
Mr. Joaquim and D. Helena
Mr. José Pedro and D. Lica (Parents Capelinha)
Walter and Angela
Paulinho and Manuela
Amâncio and Inês
Mr. Crispim and D. Lourdes
Mr. José and Mr. Odete Martins
Mr. Nicodemos and D. Alzira
Mr. José and D. Lourdes Honorário

José, Margarida and Nicete
Zé and Conceição Martins
Adam and Tereza
Tião and Penha
Magão and Luísa
Manoel and Tereza
Zé da Luz and Vera
Luís and Selma
Mr. Donde and D. Elvira
Mr. Juvelino and D. Conceição
Geraldo and D. Porcina Moura
Joaquim and D. Maria Abilio
Mr. Antônio Huck and D. Terezinha
Antônio Miranda and Edneia (Mrs. Rita de Cassia)
Luzia (mother Mauro, Luciano)
Nelinda (mother Toninha, Fuscão)
Mr. & Mrs. Expedito
Mr. João Jacó and D.Durvalina
Conceicao (Mother Rita Cassia)
Mr. Juvelino and D. Penha
Mr. Muçulino
Mr. Francisco and D. Naná
Mr. José Almeida and D. Conceição (Elenice Parents “Costureira”)
Mr. Diomar and his children

One early Colina resident, Mr. Armindo dos Santos (father of Mr. Lia , D. Osvalda, José Leonardo and Evódio) was proud to live in two Nova Era districts – Colina and De Fatima.  Since Mr. dos Santos’ Colina and De Fatima properties abutted, his horse was free to pasture on in the new neighborhood.
The pioneers of the neighborhood today tell us that in order to obtain water at home in the early days, it was necessary to search in various sources, such as the São José Cave, a spout near the school.  Electricity actually came to the neighborhood before water.  The water challenge was only solved when the Water Treatment Station – ETA was built.  A community center was also built, which served as a one-room schoolhouse until the construction of the São José da Lagoa Municipal School.  Today the neighborhood has approximately 600 houses.

The Staircase of the Hill

With Colina being primarily residential and located on top of a steep hill, most residents made daily trips up and down the hill to get to Nova Era’s business district and buses.  Because the trek up and down the hill could be slippery and dangerous in the rainy season, the inhabitants made a mutirão and thus the first staircase of the Hill appeared.  When the government widened and created the divided highway of BR381, a permanent concrete staircase and elevated pedestrian bridge was built giving residents a permanent and secure link to the city.
Unfortunately, with time, this new unlighted staircase and bridge became strewn with garbage and a meeting place for drug users.  Seeing this situation in one of his visits to parents in 2014, Artur Moreira, son of the couple Mr. Clarindo and D. Osvalda, noticed the situation of the area around the pedestrian bridge and in front of his parents’ house.  Artur was resolved to revitalize the space with a garden, trees, grass and flowers.  Artur also renovated the stairs, painted the access ways and metal structures of the pedestrian bridge and installed a system of security cameras tied to the local police department. 
In this new park space, there are several works of art designed by Artur Moreira, one of them is known as “Hard Work”, a highlight for boot and hoe, which symbolize serious work to achieve dreams and goals.  According to Artur – “the Brazilian must stop asking himself: What can the government do for me? And start asking: What can I do for my country?”
Floricultura FLORESCER
Always visionary, Artur’s future engagement is focused on lighting the staircase to receive a granite flooring (partner Elias Correia de Oliveira Júnior – TriState Stone USA), a mosaic of glass (art of Laz Muniz), landscaping (Rodrigo Ambrósio-Floriculture Florescer) and thanks to Joao Paulo Gervasio (DroneOn).
Traditionally, since December 2017, thousands of Christmas lights and puppets decorate the square that makes it a great gathering place for people and, as in the city of Mariana, the “Arte na Praça” event takes place, in partnership with artist friends Geraldino Pereira da Silva and Edney Do Carmo Silva.
Artur Moreira, has the support of his parents, Mr. Clarindo and D. Osvalda, his brothers, mainly André do Táxi, and many volunteer friends: Antônio Pimenta and Enir, Bonifácio, Cida Barony, Luana and Haroldo, Silvania Mendes, Liliu and Glaison Silva.  The participation of the residents in the project is expressive and the expectation is that all enjoy to learn and entertain, but, especially, to become aware of and become part of space.  After all, all the estates and public spaces need to be taken care of by everyone!