Havana’s architecture and design had pedestrian mobility and urban density in mind long before automobiles were on the scene.
Streets in Havana are the place where people come together to enjoy the city and each other. These public spaces make high quality life in the city possible – they form the stage and backdrop to the drama of life. Like many of the world’s great cities, Havana’s spaces range from grand central plazas and squares, to small, local neighborhood parks.
In architecture, Havana is home to the largest collection of remaining colonial-era architecture in the world. Havana’s booming economy in the 18th and 19th century allowed for luxurious homes, many with beautiful courtyards inside. The city was built following a grid system that was typical of many European cities, but over time as Havana expanded, the grid shifted slightly to take advantage of the sea breeze.
Many public buildings incorporated interior colonnades and arches to allow pedestrians to walk in the shade.
Here’s a glimpse of Havana’s amazing spaces seen from the perspective of the doorstep.