What Miamians have long believed the National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP) has just confirmed: Little Havana is a national treasure.
And indeed it is.
The neighborhood is representative of the original American Dream, a refuge where the disenfranchised have come together to thrive.
“The most well known Cuban-American enclave in the United States and a symbol of the immigrant experience and the American melting pot, Little Havana remains a thriving, diverse urban area,” said Stephanie Meeks, CEO of NTHP.
Little Havana is already one of Miami’s most popular neighborhoods. Its Cuban culture meshes with the modernity of Miami – a place where you can celebrate festivals and then go see a Marlins game. The neighborhood represents such a unique achievement in America that the Trust describes it as not only an essential part of the city, but of the country, as well.
Its website reads: “A symbol of inclusiveness, a testament to the immigrant spirit that built our nation, and an affordable neighborhood that thousands of Miamians continue to call home, Little Havana is integral both to Miami and to the nation as a whole.”
An effort to maintain, a promise to improve
Miami Mayor Tomas Regaldo called the designation a confirmation of Little Havana’s “cultural significance in the immigrant experience.”
But more than a recognition of Little Havana’s “significance,” the NTHP’s designation comes with a promise to improve the neighborhood while maintaining its essence.
“The National Trust welcomes the urban resurgence that is breathing new life into cities across the country, but we also believe that growth should not come at the expense of the vibrant historic neighborhoods like Little Havana that make cities unique and desirable places,” Meeks said. “As we work to preserve and celebrate Little Havana, we want to make sure it remains a healthy, vital, and affordable urban neighborhood.”