Client: Changkou Town Government in Fuyang District of Hangzhou
Cost: 190 usd/ m2
Text description provided by the architects. The project tackles a current social issue within the urbanization process in China: the increasing urban-rural disparity. Currently the living conditions in large part of rural China are poor, for instance in Dongziguan Village in Fuyang Hangzhou, most of the farmers still live in the aged housings of disrepair. Local Government in Fuyang District of Hangzhou decided to fund an exemplary affordable housing project in Dongziguan Village aiming at improving living condition for relocalized farmers.
During the design process, architects conducted investigations and meetings to communicate with different families of the relocalized farmers for first-hand information including their living habits. This award-winning project seeks to organize the buildings in the vernacular style of a courtyard typology, a traditional local morphology. The design of the courtyard makes it vary into four prototypes that learnt from the tradition and its diversity. The prototypes could be developed into clusters, which later grow into a larger rural settlement.
The plan layout based on the common requirements from the relocalized farmers tries to balance the traditional rural life-style and high-quality modern living condition. The design of the housings is not a carbon-copy of the local historic buildings, but abstracts and refines the features of the traditional local architecture with contemporary understandings, and then incorporates them into the design of the new housings.
The design intention of gad is dedicated to the preservation of the vernacular morphology of rural settlements that maintain original local living style and more importantly resists the current widely-criticized Chinese residential form consisted of bar-shaped highrises. Also we fights for the best building quality within the very low budget and explores contemporary ways of representing local traditional architectural characteristics. This project opens the dialogue of how the architects can help build and improve the countryside with the support from the government.