Shelter at Home: Curious Cases of Dwelling

2020 Urban models (in)habitation course had its final review entitled “Shelter at Home: Curious Cases of Dwelling”.

Shelters provide physical survival. Throughout time along with the development of urban models, the agendas for protection turned into singular functional units, such as single family, office, storage, etc. Undergoing present realities these spaces of shelter are no longer single use and, further, they are in fact connected, not separated, to other places in many ways.

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The course asked to place the perspectives of future housing within a pivotal role in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Living in quarantine is influencing the population towards habitation that diffuses and transcends the traditional separation between living and working. Self-isolation has challenged the urban models of housing, e.g in cases of imposing rent holidays, repurposing hotels and other tourist targeted short-term rentals or perspectives of homelessness for those unable to pay their rent or mortgages in near-future. Responses to this kind of crisis by the policies and/or state/city officials are yet unknown, but in some cases legislation is looking for ways to put moratoriums on evictions, loan values, etc. This seems to be a temporary, ad hoc response to the unexpected. The shortage of housing and urban inequalities become even more evident than before. To phrase it in a dramatic tone:  “Where you live, determines how you will die”.

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Posted by Keiti Kljavin