Providing affordable houses for migrant workers in megacities like Shanghai is the primary purpose of our project. We are trying to use the current roof space to create a new layer of the existing city space.
At first, we started with different ideas. Joo got the idea from 품앗이, which means an exchange of labor; for example, during the busy season, some villagers will borrow laborers from other families to harvest, and maybe next time, they will hire others to build or renovate a house. This mainly happened in Korean agricultural society between two people or two families in the past. Joo tried modernizing it to apply it to fields like babysitting, education, and construction. Harlan drew the idea of injustice in minorities. In China, there has been a phenomenon that the culture of minorities, like lifestyle, has been ignored and assimilated due to the influence of the Han ethnic group. They were creating a sense of Han ethnic group domination. So Harlan tried to divide the original lifestyle of minorities of Han nationality. For example, some minorities from China had one specific house called the long house, which was used as a communal space, people cooked unsocialized there, and Harlan thought it could be a modernized sharing space. From these two ideas, we elicited to solve the housing issue of migrant workers in big cities of China by constructing their houses themselves. Many minorities, especially the young, are moving to cities to work on construction sites for higher income. The living conditions during work are deplorable. This is because there is not only a lack of housing in the city, but migrant workers also do not have enough money to live in.