AbstractCities in Puerto Rico have historically faced the sea backwards. As an example, the municipality of Arecibo's urban design integrates its coast but not as a public space. The waterfront locally known as La Marginal was studied in this essay to determine why it has not developed the typical activities that are associated with these public linear spaces. We discovered that La Marginal is the result of slum clearing efforts that took place during the 1950's and 1960's. This endeavor from the state closely aligned with the prevailing mindset of modernizing major cities on the Island through the use of vast urban renewal projects. As a consequence, the population that once lived in the coast was dispaced from the urban center and did not reintegrate afterwards leading to the continual obsolescence of the city, where incomplete efforts were meant to revitalize the urban center. Therefore, La Marginal is an example of construction projects in Puerto Rico that do not engage the communities they are built in and result in a characterless and lifeless space.
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