Its only access from the main road system (specifically, Gaillard Highway) was on a road which started from Corozal.
The main cemetery for the Panama Canal Zone was located along this road. Past the cemetery was the local Mormon church. The road continued to climb as it went past these until cresting a hill, with Cardenas located on the back slope of the hill. The Jungle on three of its sides were part of various military bases, mostly Fort Clayton.
There were no stores or other services located in Cardenas, just homes. There was one "community center", which was basically a small one-room building available for use by clubs.
As the Canal Zone was gradually handed over to Panamanian control, Cardenas was one of the last Zonian holdouts. Its isolated nature helped preserve this (most of the other townships had homes handed over to Panamanian control as they became vacated). In time this too ended, and nowadays it is basically a residential neighborhood in the Canal area.