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HAVANA’S GREEN SHINGLE HOUSE


The green shingle house is in the Havana suburb of Miramar, on your right when you go through the tunnel from Vedado, on fifth avenue. It looks like something out of a film, and sparks the interest of many a passerby. It was recently restored by the Office of the Historian of the City, and currently houses an office of this institution dedicated to studying modernism, urbanism, and design. Quite ironic, since the house was built ninety years ago, and despite its wrinkles, it continues to impress visitors.

The long and difficult restoration project has not been in vain. The house was worth the effort, and now ongoing maintenance and upkeep are being used to keep it from deteriorating again. The two year restoration project saw the house repainted in its original colors, with its original moldings restored and repaired, and other details that returned the structure its original glory.

The house is now dedicated to the study of Havana architecture, and students study urbanism and design there. It is also closely connected to the faculty of the CUJAE technical school. Conferences, children’s workshops, community workshops, and other events are now held at Miramar’s green shingle house. All efforts help to contribute to a better understanding of Havana’s architectural history. The students and recent graduates in the field of architecture have benefited the most from the house’s new role. The effort was intended to improve their ability to learn about the Cuban capital’s architecture.

So, what have been the main accomplishments of this project? There has been a great deal of interest in the history of Havana’s architecture since the project opened. Not only from locals, but also from the increasing number of foreign visitors to the island, especially Americans. The goal now is to foster this interest of the city’s history, especially among the young, both inside and outside of the island.

By Clao York



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