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Santo Domingo is the capital of the Dominican Republic. Founded in 1496 by Christopher Columbus, it is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the Americas, with the America's first cathedral, hospital, customs house, and university. The town was laid out in a grid pattern that became the model for almost all town planners in the New World. This Terra satellite image, acquired on 18 May 2011, covers an area 24 x 30 km (15 x 18 mi). Photo courtesy of NASA.