At Home with the Collective: Towards a Housing Urbanism
Above Image by Jia Zhen
In an age of affordable housing shortage and an economy and culture that centers on single family homes, architecture has largely ceased to rethink established forms of living and the politics and economies that surround it. This VC studio, therefore, sets out to develop new typologies of living that can challenge the fallacies of “home” and private ownership by rethinking affordable housing for urban minorities and disadvantaged people. It tests scenarios that question the dominant narrative around heteronormative family structure, domestic work, financial models, and shareholder involvement by reconfiguring unit layouts (through adaptability), the organization of building blocks (through shared facilities), and the makeup of neighborhoods (through activation). The term “collective” is here introduced as a mechanism to shift attention from house to housing, from private to communal living, from mono-functional to shared spaces, from work-home divisions to “homework” invitations, and from restrictive to expanded forms of dwelling that can adapt to non-domestic acts. As such, we asks how new forms of collective housing could rethink established norms and conventions—aiming to expose alternatives to the current crisis.
Conversation and Studio Work featured in MAS Context, September 2022.