Xuefei Ren – Urban Design And Inequality: The Case Of Urban Villages In China’s Megacities

No comments yet

Ren-3citiespapers.ssrc.org, July 2014. I would like to discuss some of the major planning and design challenges over redeveloping informal settlements in China’s megacities. Specifically, I will focus on the settlement type of the “urban village,” which is commonly found in cities in the Pearl River Delta in southern China, where migrant workers rent rooms from farmers- turned-landlords and form their enclaves. Guangzhou, the capital city of Guangdong province, has one of the largest numbers of migrant urban villages. The city government has recently identified 138 of such settlements and some of them have been “successfully redeveloped,” as claimed by the government. However, to date, the “successful” redevelopment approach in Guangzhou has been to demolish all existing structures and build high-rise apartment towers instead. Some of the apartment units are distributed to villagers to compensate their loss and the rest is sold on the market for a profit. A better planning and policy solution is needed to redevelop these urban villages that are vital to the survival of migrant workers in China’s large cities.

The redevelopment of urban villages is a highly contentious process, involving constant negotiations over compensation between developers and villagers/lease holders, and this is often mediated by the local government. But, whatever the compensation terms might be, migrant tenants are always the victims of the  redevelopment. Without any title to either the land or the housing structures, they are simply forced out once their urban village is slated for “redevelopment.” The current approach of demolishing the old and building new is costly, in both economic and social terms. The local government does not have sufficient funds for compensation and construction, and therefore, redevelopment is left to private developers. Moreover, redevelopment pushes migrant workers further away from the city, thus causing a shortage in the labor market. In most cases, migrant tenants have to start all over again, move to a more remote location, and form a new enclave—until their new home is “redeveloped” again.

Read more: http://citiespapers.ssrc.org/urban-design-and-inequality-the-case-of-urban-villages-in-chinas-megacities/

image_pdfimage_print
Bookmark and Share

Comments

Leave a Reply





What is 14 + 17 ?
Please leave these two fields as-is:
IMPORTANT! To be able to proceed, you need to solve the following simple math (so we know that you are a human) :-)


  • About

    Rozenberg Quarterly aims to be a platform for academics, scientists, journalists, authors and artists, in order to offer background information and scholarly reflections that contribute to mutual understanding and dialogue in a seemingly divided world. By offering this platform, the Quarterly wants to be part of the public debate because we believe mutual understanding and the acceptance of diversity are vital conditions for universal progress. Read more...
  • Support

    Rozenberg Quarterly does not receive subsidies or grants of any kind, which is why your financial support in maintaining, expanding and keeping the site running is always welcome. You may donate any amount you wish and all donations go toward maintaining and expanding this website.

    10 euro donation:

    20 euro donation:

    Or donate any amount you like:

    Or:
    ABN AMRO Bank
    Rozenberg Publishers
    IBAN NL65 ABNA 0566 4783 23
    BIC ABNANL2A
    reference: Rozenberg Quarterly

    If you have any questions or would like more information, please see our About page or contact us: info@rozenbergquarterly.com
  • Like us on Facebook

  • Follow us on Twitter

  • Recent articles

  • Rozenberg Quarterly categories