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Buildings/Compounds/Units chapter of the Lexicon of Chinese Urbanism

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  2. 2. AN ILLUSTRATED LEXICON OF CHINESEURBANISM中国城市化插图词典TABLE OF CONTENTSBuildings, Compounds, Units楼房,大院,和单位INTRODUCTION1 Danwei - State Owned Work Unit - 单位2 Ai qiang - zhihui tai - yao qiang - Podium - 矮墙, 指挥台, 腰墙3 Da Yuan - Big Compound - 大院4 Jiucheng - Old City - 旧城5 Qi tong, yi ping - Seven Connections, One Leveling - 七通一平6 Wo ju - Snail House - 蜗居7 Yi ju - Ant’s Nest Housing - 蚁居8 Object Building - 对象建设
  3. 3. 9 700 m2 - 七百平米10 Hutong - Traditional Beijing Neighborhood - 胡同11 Jingzufang - State-Managed Worker Housing - 经租房12 Weizao - Fake- 伪造13 Chaofang- Real Estate Speculation- 炒房14 Feiqi Shangchang-Deserted Malls- 废弃商场15 Zhongguo Sudu - China Speed - 中国速度16 Jiaonang Gongyu-Capsule Apartment-胶囊公寓17 Yi-xian-tan - Thread-like sky - 一线天
  4. 4. INTRODUCTIONThe architecture and urban spaces of Chinaare still undergoing a process of incredibletransformation coinciding with with the rapideconomic growth of the last 30 years. In thisrelatively short span Beijing itself has gonefrom Mao’s “forest of chimneys” to a place of“Object Buildings”.This chapter defines and illustrates termsrelating to Buildings, Compounds, and Units inthe lexicon of contemporary Chinese urbanism.These terms reflect the dramatic changes,upheavals and surprising continuities in thebuilt form of Chinese cities.
  5. 5. DANWEI 单位 state owned work unit Single + Location Danwei’s are state owned work units established in China tomaintain the hukou system. They are like walled-in miniature cities containing factories, housing, schools, medical facili- ties and everything else required for daily life. Sources: China Urban, p. 6 Streetlife China, Michael Dutton
  6. 6. Ai qiang-zihui tai-yao qiang 矮墙, 指挥台, 腰墙 podium / parapet wall Low + Wall, Conduct + Stage, Waist + Wall A parapet is a low wall constructed above the roofline that usually spans around the perimeter of a building. Parapets may be purely aesthetic or primarily functional, such as hiding mechanical equipment or performing as a firewall. Referencehttp://www.masonryconstruction.com/industry-news.asp?se
  7. 7. Da Yuan 大院 big compound Large + CompoundAn enclosed unit containing danwei work and housing facilities, as well as other public uses Source: Weili Ye, Xiaodong Ma, Growing up in the People’s Republic: Conversations between TwoDaughters of China’s Revolution (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005).
  8. 8. Jiucheng 旧城 old city Old + City Old, traditional neighborhoods. Efforts are now beingmade to preserve Hutongs in Beijing. The Ju-er Hutong was the first to be worked on. Source: Ju-er Hutong (Beijing Compendium) hutongphotography.com
  9. 9. Qi tong, yi ping 七通一平seven connections, one leveling Seven through one level Seven Connections (to Infrastructures such as water, gas, electricity, signal, road), One Leveling (now should be more like 9 infrastructures/connections, one leveling), so that the land is ready for real estate development and massive block constructions. Sources Adrian Blackwell Interview with Ai Weiwei Comments
  10. 10. Wo ju 蜗居 snail house Worm + Dwelling Narrow Dwellings comes from the Chinese phrase ‡E, which has a variation of usages, mostly to mean “humble abode.” Usages of the Pinyin can be found in the Yuan and Qingdynasties. Narrow Dwellings has been used in this post insteadof Dwelling Narrowness, which is being used elsewhere and on the official poster for the drama - on the television series High housing prices are causing widespread grudge and depression among millions of young Chinese, who believe the prices are manipulated. The intensity of this sentiment was revealed in “Dwelling Narrowness,” a Chinese TV drama put on in 2009, in which one of the main characters becomes the mistress of a government official who helps repay her elder sister’s mortgage. Source: http://www.danwei.org/tv/narrow_dwellings.php.
  11. 11. Ma Yi Gong Fang 蚂蚁工房 ant studio Ant Work House Super dense housing developed by China Vanke. 2004, the first “Ant Studio” was built and sold in Shanghai, the price started at 500,000RMB as the lowest, and it is very popular ever since. Nowadays, there are ant studios in all the major cities in China. Features: 1.Fully decorated, even with electronic applicants. People can move in immediately. 2.From 40m2 to 90m2. 3.Usually convenient location. Customers: Young people, first house, or for renting out to other people. Most Ant Studio are housing, some are for business. The “ant” in ant studio different from the “ant” in Ant People.Source: http://www.hudong.com/wiki/%E4%B8%87%E7%A7%9 1%E8%9A%82%E8%9A%81%E5%B7%A5%E6%88%BF
  12. 12. Object Building 对象建设 Object + Building “Detached from and often contrasting with its surroundings, a typical OB is freestanding, figural, sculptural, and formally unique in terms of geometry, material, and color. It is often tall but height is not a critical criterion.” pg 123.The OB does not connect nor attempt to fit with its surroundings, resulting in unified urban landscape. Building regulations such as mandated setbacks, coverage areas and Daylight Distance translate to the deliberate planning of the OB. Sourece: Yung Ho Chang Essay (Beijing Compendium)
  13. 13. 700 M^2 七百平米 seven hundred square meter seven hundred flat meter Seven hundred square meter is an unit used to describe a typical super block size in Chinese Urbanism. The massive expansion of Chinese urbanism has lead to these big sizesof super blocks that saturated in its development and ability of function. References: http://www.newgeography.com/content/001906-china’s- urbanization-it-has-only-just-begun Picture on the right: a miniaturized dystopian landscape of
  14. 14. HUTON 胡同 traditional Beijing neighborhood tribe togetherHutong is a typical type of street in Chinese cities and towns that denotes smaller sizes than a major road. Hutons are network connections between major roads .There are two types of hutong, the “live hutong” and “dead hutong”. Live hutongs are the ones described above as connectors be-tween major roads in cities, dead hutongs on the other hand stretch into the residence blocks and lead to the end of the street. Sources: http://baike.baidu.com/view/9930.htm http://www.beijingexplorer.com
  15. 15. JINGZOFANG 经租房 state-managed rental housing economic rent house State-managed housing refer to some private -owned housing in the cities . During 1958 the period of socialisttransformation, government claimed the rights of managing these housing units. By managing the housing units, state government obtained control on real estate as a means of transforming the society under their desire. Nowadays the housing owenrs are appealing to rettain the ownership. Sources: http://baike.baidu.com/view/829657.htm Wang, Shi. “Building Wonderland”, New York Times April 2008 Picture on the right: “Fifty-eight years of state-managedhousing policy, it’s only a matter of ways of operating, state- manager is only the manager, please stop infringing our rights“
  16. 16. WEIZAO 伪造 fake fake make This term here is specifically refered to the fantacies that China make through mimicing the iconic architecture in the world . The intension is to create an ideal world in which people experience the world without flying all around the planet.The dilema created by these fake buildings-the awareness of the unrealness and the appreciation of that unreal existance are the most attractive feature. This fea-ture is part of a bigger picture in China that people don’t go globle because they are sitting on the biggest attraction in the world. References: Wang, Shi. “Building Wonderland”, New York Times April 2008
  17. 17. CHAOFANG 炒房 real estate speculation stir -fry housing China’s real estate bubble has increased in the past few years mainly because people are getting wealthy and in- vest on real estate. Situations such as fake divorce happen due to government initiatives to curb the housing bubble. China has raised the down payment for second mortgages, and about 40 Chinese cities have begun to limit apartment purchases to two per family, or one for non-locals. The gov- ernment has also asked commercial banks to stop offering loans to third-home buyers. To get around the restrictions, Chinese couples are flocking to so-called fake-certificate companies, which sell phony di-vorce papers for 300 yuan, or about $45. Getting “divorced”allows couples to register properties under separate names. References/Sources: http://usa.chinadaily.com.cn/business/2011-11/05/con- tent_14044891.htm http://www.eclectecon.net/2011/08/
  18. 18. FEIQISHANGCHANG 废弃商场 deserted malls abandon economy squareLargely empty megamalls are an increasingly common sightin cities around China. More are being built, even as millions of square metres of retail space already sit empty. In the trendy Sanlitun neighbourhood of Beijing, five shop- ping complexes sit within two square kilometres. Shoppers aren’t following the brand names to Sanlitun, which is one of the wealthiest enclaves in China. In the upscale Village North mall – which hosts Versace, Longchamp and Emporio Armani stores – the occasional shoppers are outnumbered by phalanxes of bored employees. The 14 towers of the even newer Sanlitun Soho project sit mostly empty just two blocks away, while Pacific Century Place department store, another block east and once the area’s trendiest place to shop, will shut its doors next month. With the global economy on the brink of a second recession in three years, it’s clear that China’s consumption revolu- tion hasn’t yet come to pass. While the overall economy has grown nearly 10 per cent a year since then, much of thatwas driven by investment and construction that many see as camouflage for a lack of genuine growth. References/Sources: Mackinnon, Mark. “China’s giant, deserted malls wait for reluctant consumers”. Monday’s Global and Mail, 2003
  19. 19. ZHONGGUOSUDU 中国速度the efficiency in Chinese building industry China SpeedChina is famous for its fast development in all aspects of itsindustry. In terms of building and construction, the high effi-ciency of laboring and technology has become an attraction to foreign companies to invest and build in China. construc-tion going up so quickly. The picture on the right is a project done by Wang Qingsong, a resemblence of the speed of Chinese constructions. References/Sources: http://www.cctv.com/special/824/index.shtml
  20. 20. JIAONANGGONGYU 胶囊公寓 Capsule Housing Capsule Apartment The city’s first capsule apartments, which were built by a 75-year-old retired engineer in April, are facing a mini- wrecking ball after the city released new regulations that effectively outlaw them, due the far smaller living space provided in the apartments for each residence than the regulated rules. The owner’s intend was to offer compact and affordable homes to low-income Beijingers, as anotheralternartive to snail housing and ant’s nest housing. The newregulation could potentially make some poor people that liv- ing in such compacted space homeless. References/Sources: http://www.chinadaily.com/doorsslammed on cities first capsule apartment
  21. 21. YIXIANTIAN 一线天 the sky between buildings is as thin as a piece of thread one thread sky This term is originally used to describe a natural feature, the cracks in the mountains and the created narrow path- way . When people walk in the cracks the sky above them looks as thin as a piece of thread. Now this term is referedto the congestion of residence buildings in cities and there- fore the sky between two residence buildings is as thin as a piece of thread. Natural lighting is terribly limited and therefore causes bad living conditions in the buildings. References/Sources:http://news.sina.com.cn/s/p/2010-11-06/101121425043. shtml