In 1960, Brazil moved its capital city from Rio de Janeiro to a brand new city in the center of the country, called Brasilia. Brasilia was designed and constructed on empty land near the center of the country in the 1950s. Brazil moved its capital from Rio de Janeiro to Brasilia to assert its independence, exchanging a colonial capital on the coast for a new interior capital. The interior, underdeveloped, location of the new capital allowed a fresh start as well as an opportunity to develop the region.
A beach near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (photo by Paul A. Tucci).