This 17 floors brutalist complex was the first coup de foudre in La Habana. Built in 1967 in the Vedado neighbourhood, the building faces the sea on the Malecon boulevard.
It was designed in 1967 by Antonio Quintana and Alberto Rodríguez. It was revolutionary from a construction point of view since it was the first building to use slip-mold construction. It was also, by placing a social housing project smack in Malecón with fantastic ocean views, a frontal critique on the ‘bourgeois’ character of el Vedado neighbourhood. (Andrés Mignucci, University of Puerto Rico )
Corroded by salt, rusty structural iron surfacing all over, its concrete skeleton looks like a creation of the gloomiest J.G. Ballard. Elevators are out of order since ages, the stairs lack of balustrade and steps. The two blocks are connected by long claustrophobic corridors, constantly swept by the breeze, scoping the amazing waterfront through long embrasures worthy of a bunker.
Life sardonically sprinkles from this modernist dream turned nightmare: old ladies carrying shopping bags up the stairs, bodybuilders exercising in the corridors, children joyfully playing all over.
Here on Academia.edu an article by Andrés Mingucci on experimental housing in South America which includes the Edificio Girón with some of our pictures.