Corpus Christi is a coastal city in the South Texas region of the U.S. state of Texas. The county seat of Nueces County, it also extends into Aransas, Kleberg, and San Patricio counties. The metropolitan area population in 2012 was 469,134. The population was 312,195 at the 2012 US Census estimate, making it the eighth most populous city in the state of Texas. It is the principal city of the tri-county Corpus Christi metropolitan area, as well as the larger Corpus Christi-Kingsville Combined Statistical Area. The translation from Latin of the city's name (Corpus Christi) means Body of Christ. The name was given to the settlement and surrounding bay by Spanish explorer Alonso Álvarez de Pineda in 1519, when he discovered the lush semi-tropical bay on the feast day celebrating the "Body of Christ." The city has the nicknames "Texas Riviera" and "Sparkling City by the Sea", particularly in literature promoting tourism. The city is home to the Port of Corpus Christi, the 5th largest port in the nation, and is served by the Corpus Christi International Airport.
Corpus Christi was founded in 1839 by Colonel Henry Lawrence Kinney as Kinney's Trading Post, or Kinney's Ranch. It was a small trading post that sold supplies to a Mexican revolutionary army camped about 25 miles (40 km) west. In July 1845, U.S. troops commanded by General Zachary Taylor set up camp there in preparation for war with Mexico, where they remained until March 1846. Approximately one year later, the settlement was named Corpus Christi and was incorporated on 9 September 1852.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Corpus Christi has a total area of 460.2 square miles (1,192.0 km2), of which 154.6 square miles (400.5 km2, 33.60%) is land and 305.6 square miles (791.5 km2, 66.40%) is water. Drinking water for the city is supplied by two reservoirs, Lake Corpus Christi and the Choke Canyon Reservoir. Through an effective regional partnership with the Nueces River Authority and the Port of Corpus Christi Authority, a 101-mile (163 km) pipeline was built which transports water from Lake Texana to the city's O.N. Steven's Water Treatment Plant. It was named the Mary Rhodes Pipeline, after the late Mayor Mary Rhodes. All reservoirs are outside the city limits, but are managed directly by the public utility of the City of Corpus Christi.