URBANIZACION SAN FELIPE

Maracaibo, 1982

Asocial housing complextotaling 20,000 prefabricated units on 750 acres. I conceived both the architecture and urban plan. Once the urbanization process was ready and a first groupof 1200 apartments were built, an enraged crowd of those who didn’t get apartments, invaded the place. In one night,a whole shantytown made of planks and tin was installed. The informal settlement used the roads, services and public spaces that we had developed.

In spite of the negative consequences that for the development of the urbanization, this act could have had-closure of the manufacture of prefabricated housing with the consequential dismissal of 600 workers, families that was left without the official housing for which they had worked and fought, etc.-, all that happened made me understand that auto construction in previously urbanized land (using all the infrastructures already built), was a better way of approaching social housing.I suspected that his fortuitous and organic intervention “bottom up”, would in the long term, surpass the original project. As in fact it did happen in its 30 years of existence, in a never ending process in which the inhabitants, in each one’s way, improve their living conditions. A process that has historically defined the real city as a never-ending common language conversation. 

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