Staircase Collapses in a Downtown Havana Building

By Elio Delgado Valdés

HAVANA TIMES – In the morning hours of Tuesday, April 18, the staircase of the building located at the corners of San Miguel and Amistad municipality of Centro Habana collapsed.

A fire department unit came to the scene to make it easier for the residents to leave the building through a second-story window overlooking San Miguel Street.

On this occasion there was no loss of human life. According to the residents on several occasions they have attended the neighborhood meetings in search of a solution to the problems presented by the building, without response from the representative for the district, only evasiveness.

The growing deterioration of the majestic building, converted into an overcrowded slum, like many others in the city’s ill-treated architecture, has taken place over the years before everyone’s eyes, residents, neighbors and authorities.

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10 thoughts on “Staircase Collapses in a Downtown Havana Building

  • April 26, 2017 at 6:00 am

    I saw this incident myself. Living in some of the buildings in Havana is like playing Russian roulette. There is money to do up buildings for tourism but NONE of the receipts from tourism is ring fenced for any social care, health care, education etc etc. It would be so easy to add a small tax to cruise ship docking tariffs (God knows those boats engines – never switched off even when docked- are pumping yet more pollution over the city) or re introduce the exit tax now included in plane ticket costs to build a fund for these kind of projects. But the government would never go for this and there are no ways for citizens to suggest such an initiative without the fear of recriminations.

    And while it does not directly relate to this post, I was disgusted by the ignorance and crass behaviour of some of the new wave of tourists (Americans mostly and some Canadians) waddling through the streets and gurning in the back of a convertible classic car – there are SO many now conspicuously gleaming next to the collectivos – while brandishing their phone on a selfie stick as if it were a magic wand. (You know how the drivers honk their horns as they drive these tourists through the streets? You guys think that is for your benefit? No! That is a way of making their $50 per hour (double the average monthly salary) and upwards transaction audible to all and sundry. A cacaphonic “ker-ching” of their wallets getting fatter – though the government do cream off a not insignificant amount in taxes.) If you are going to Cuba PLEASE travel responsibly and sustainably and consider the impact of your actions/consumption.

  • April 23, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    I was born in Cuba in 1948, I’m an Afro cuban my father work in the port and my mother was a teacher when Batista was in power, we were able to afford a three bedroom apartment in Havana and choice were to live even with blasting racism that existed those day where was no rent for blacks in some neighborhoods. Fidel Castro promised free elections, and the restablsment of 1940’s constitution, little by little he stole properties, land ,buildings, newspapers,factories, for the “people” just to put them in the hand of Castro regime. The maintenance of this building has nothing to do with the “Embargo” of American Tea party or Batista. This is the result if a totalitarian regime that refuses individual freedom, when I lived in Cuba under Castro until I escaped the government hardly mentioned the “Embargo”. Why because the Castro’s monarchy was financed by URSS in exchange for interventions in Africa, and destabilizing in Central America. If this Building was in the hands of the property Señor Sarra I bet he was give a maintenance for a profit that is the way it’s work and has, but perhaps you prefer the Castro’s method. Take it form his owners, low the rent, don’t do anything because the slave should be happy in the Barracon, and whe it collapse blame USA, Batista, CubanAmericans, everyone but the dictatorship. And have minions like you repeating the pamphlet. Next time when in Havana go to the next Urbanization around 100 ST and Aldabo in the district of AltaHavana and you would see how the regime had built a modern nice buildings with everything including inside a gate urbanization for militaries and minions of the police forces those who repress the Danas de Blanco, and anyone who dare to dissent.

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