Cities of refuge: the emergence of temporal urbanism

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dc.contributor.author Leong, Terence
dc.date.accessioned 2009-09-21T11:35:08Z
dc.date.available 2009-09-21T11:35:08Z
dc.date.issued 2009-09-21T11:35:08Z
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10539/7302
dc.description.abstract In the era of globalisation we are required to negotiate a large series of global flows. These include the flow of capital ideas, imagery, goods and people. Contemporary culture has increasingly become nomadic, and the idea of place has become transitive. This condition stands in contradiction to the time-honoured notion of the city as a stable entity. Whether brought about by natural catastrophe or initiated by choice, instant cities emerge, only to disappear again just as rapidly. This has given rise to new terms such as relief urbanism, deadline urbanism or event urbanism. This shift from notions of fixed locality to temporary accommodation for mass migration requires equivalent forms of flexibility in planning. (Weiss 2007:3) This thesis will focus on the particular flow within this contemporary situation which has the biggest implication for architecture, namely the movement of people. Since the world war, migrancy has rapidly become more global in scope and scale with there being more mobility than any other period in history. (Cairns 2004:3) Contemporary migrancy involves the movement of immigrants, emigrants, guest workers, refugees and asylum seekers. The effects of migrancy are also being more intensely felt and widespread than ever before. Nowhere are the impacts more evident than in Africa where the movement of people as a result of war, poverty and persecution are central to the continent’s economics and politics. While migrancy is rapidly transforming Africa the region lacks the capacity to understand and manage these movements. (Forced Migration Studies Programme 2008) So the focus of this thesis will be on refugees and asylum seekers seeking refuge in South Africa and the impacts it is having on displaced people themselves and the local population made terrifyingly manifest in the recent Xenophobic attacks plaguing the country. Following a discussion of the many problems faced by refugees and the root causes of the Xenophobic attacks in Johannesburg this thesis will look at the alleviation of some of these problems culminating in the design of a Prefabricated Housing Prototype and System which can be implemented in a combination of contexts. The system will be developed using 3 test studies. The first will be as an infill project in an dense urban context providing cheap rental unit options for the urban poor including South African low income earners and refugees in the inner city, the second will be a housing model for upgrading stable South African informal settlements and the third as an alternative Refugee camp in an emergency or cross border context. It will examine the role of architecture as a means to sustain dignity and create a sense of belonging for people with very few social connections. The facility will aim to help people regain control of their lives by helping them to contribute to the market economy. It will also aim to be an architecture that is against alienation and will facilitate healing. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.subject Refugees en_US
dc.subject Housing en_US
dc.subject Johannesburg en_US
dc.subject City planning en_US
dc.title Cities of refuge: the emergence of temporal urbanism en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US


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