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Full text of "The Discovery Of The Child"

INAUGURAL ADDRESS                         49

fifty-eight houses, occupying a ground space of about 30,000 square
metres, and containing, independent of the ground floor, 1,600
small apartments. Thousands of people will in this way receive
the beneficent influence of the protective reforms of the Good
Building Association. Following its beneficent programme, the
Association set about transforming these old houses according to
the most modern standards, paying as much attention to questions
of hygiene and morals as to those relating to buildings. The con-
structional changes would make the property of real and lasting
value, while the hygienic and moral transformation would, through
the improved condition of the inmates, make the rent from these
apartments a more definite asset.

The Association of Good Building therefore decided upon a
programme which would permit of a gradual attainment of its
ideal. It is necessary to proceed slowly because it is not easy to
empty a tenement house at a time when houses are scarce, and the
humanitarian principles which govern the entire movement make-
it impossible to proceed more rapidly in this work of regeneration.
So it is that the Association has up to the present time transformed
only three houses in the Quarter of San Lorenzo. The plan
followed in this transformation is as follows:

(a)  To demolish in every building all portions of the structure
not originally constructed with the idea of making homes, but
from a purely commercial standpoint, of making the rent-roll
larger.   In other words, the new management tore down those
parts of the building which encumbered the central court, thus
doing away with dark, ill-ventilated apartments, and giving air
and light to the remaining portion of the tenement.   Broad airy
courts took the place of the inadequate air and light shafts,
rendering the remaining apartments more valuable and infinitely
more desirable.

(b)  To increase the number of stairways, and to divide the
room space in a more practical way.   The large six or seven room
suites are reduced to small apartments of one, two, or three rooms,
and a kitchen.   The importance of such changes may be recognized

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