Museo Paseo de la Cisterna

Casa de Juan Manuel de Rosas

Useful Information

Location: Moreno 550, C1091 AAL, Buenos Aires.
(-34.611460, -58.373900)
Open: All year Sat 14.
By appointment only.
Fee: free.
Classification: SubterraneaCistern
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours: self guided
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Address: Museo Paseo de la Cisterna, Moreno 550, C1091 AAL, Buenos Aires. E-mail:
Tour reservation: E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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2016 Estudio Kohon hired to develop a project of a real estate development.
MAR-2018 HiTePAC Historical Archeology Team of the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism of the National University of La Plata summoned to excavate the cistern.


Museo Paseo de la Cisterna (The Cistern Walk) is the newest underground site in Buenos Aires. It was discovered during a rather average project of real estate development, which was made by the architects Estudio Kohon. When they sarted digging the base they discovered a circular structure, a team of professional archaeologists started excavation and soon it became clear that this was an abandoned cistern. The project was reformulated to include the cistern and all the material found, as part of a historical and cultural tour. The cistern was excavated by the HiTePAC Historical Archeology Team of the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism of the National University of La Plata.

The initial objective of the intervention was to excavate the remains of the large brick structure that had been found. It was a cylinder with an external diameter of about 8 m and a height of just over 3 m. It was not only covered but also filled with earth. The structure was identified as a cistern, the sediments contain numerous remains of the last century.

The land was acquired by the Ezcurra family in the early 19th century. Brigadier Juan Manual de Rosas married Encarnación Ezcurra and the two lived here in their private residence until in 1852. de Rosas is quite infamous, nicknamed "Restorer of the Laws", he actually was a sort of warlock with enormous landholdings and a loyal private army. In December 1829, he became governor of the province of Buenos Aires and established a dictatorship backed by state terrorism. By 1848, he had extended his power and was ruler of all of Argentina. He even attempted to annex the neighbouring nations of Uruguay and Paraguay. But finally not only France and Great Britain, but also the Empire of Brazil began defending Uruguay which started the Platine War in 1851. It was short and ended with Rosas being defeated. He spent the rest of his life in exile living as a tenant farmer and abandoned this property permanently.

The buildings were used as the Government House of the Province of Buenos Aires and later as the Post Office. At the beginning of the 20th century, they were demolished to build a tenancy. In the early 1970s, these buildings were completely demolished to build a parking lot.

The cistern holds about 300,000 l of water, which is far more than a houshold requires, so it was not a private structure. It was built in the late 19th century when the building was the Government House of the Province of Buenos Aires, and was intended to provide water for the government.

After the architects had redesigned the project to allow the construction of an underground museum in the basement it was called Paseo de La Cisterna. The Estudio Kohon and the Ministry of Culture of the City signed a contract in 2022 to create the Cisterna Sitio Arqueológico. The cistern is fully restored and surrounded by a historic exhibition with items retrieved during the excavation, explaoning the hiostory of the city since the late 19th century. It also contains a restaurant and is used for events. There are conference rooms and a beergarden on the rooftop. The site is currently not completed and opened to the public, but there are already weekly guided tours.