Informal Affluent Urbanism, M.ARCH, UBC

My design proposal for this term is to re-contextualize the informal architecture of the urban south and developed world by projecting its forms, networks and relationships in the future cities of the developed world as a result of the amplification of many current urban issues.

As the wealth gap increases and rural to urban human migration continues, city cores empty of residents due to exorbitantly high housing costs. Investment properties sit empty as assets and monuments of the rich while middle and working class families with good paying jobs can no longer afford to live in the city. With banks having tightened their lending policies and ghost residential neighbourhoods scattered in the suburbs as ruins of the housing crisis of the early 2000’s, families have no choice but to position themselves outside the law and begin squatting and upgrading these abandoned and crumbling neighbourhoods.

This project would begin with an archetypical group of buildings representative of the remnant decaying housing in city peripheries which are the result of excess housing constructed during the boom of the 1990’s and 2000’s. These existing properties and buildings will be renovated and evolved over time to increase density, domestic value, and mixing of uses by applying principles and patterns gleaned from informal architectures.

The scope and direction of the project, as well as the design, will evolve over the next two months.