我为什么着迷于上海里弄 Living in a lilong



[Photo by Urban Language]

2008年,当我决定搬到中国时,第一个面临的问题就是去哪里找个好住所。我从荷兰来,那里大多数人都住在平均三层高的排屋里,而我住在农场里。对于能居住在一个活力大都市的摩天大楼里,我感到非常兴奋。然而当我到达上海后,却发现上海也有很多地方是低层住宅,但居住密度远远高于我住过的地方。
我的第一个公寓住所位于一个毫无特点的郊区高层住宅的第17层。小区内,还有21栋一模一样的高楼。住了一段时间后,我决定搬到有些特点的地方住,比如那些可以让人认识邻里的低层住宅,并成为“城市的一部分”。我在中国的亲戚帮我在一个里弄街区找到一个美观的弄堂房屋。虽然那地方已经变得很陈旧,但仍然保持着有特色的高天花板、木地板、以及有意思的建筑细节,例如错层式的布局。在这里可以看到不错的城市全景,我甚至还有一个5平米的小屋顶花园,可以让我晾晾衣服,或是惬意地喝杯茶。
在没有受过建筑训练的人眼里,上海的高层小区似乎与里弄没什么相同之处。然而,对于我这样的建筑师来说,它们却有一些宽泛的相似处:两种都是大的组合体街区,里面的空间划分地十分理性,都是为了将居民数量最大化。在两种空间里,小区被高墙围住,有限的出入口将区域与外界隔离,促成了一种集体主义和设施共用的感觉。这里的人会说他们住在哪个“小区”,而不会说住在哪个大楼里,这意味着一个人属于某个“社区”。
当然,一个重要的不同点是:里弄里的街坊邻居彼此认识,有种共享空间的感觉。这种邻里感在高层地产中被牺牲掉了。高层楼宇之间隔着很多绿地,步行距离被延伸了,开放性被优先,导致了居民间更少的沟通。此外,高层公寓面积更大,都带有自己的厨房和卫生间,所以并不存在共用的必要性。
根据上海统计年鉴,21世纪的第一个十年中,平均每年有5万个里弄住宅消失,被现代化高层建筑取代。这是一个有点令人唏嘘的数字,而实际的数字可能更高。这些数字也是上海今日城市规划叙述中的一部分,也就是如何保护城市的建筑遗产。
我很快就爱上了我的里弄住所。有趣的是,当我为《上海新城》做采访的时候,很多当地居民说他们一点也不喜欢里弄这样的老街区。相反,他们更喜欢住在现代卫生和便利的高层中。当时我很震惊,但当有了两种房屋的居住经验之后,我明白了为什么。
住在里弄这样的传统低层住宅的主要问题是,里面的居民对他们的房屋没什么责任感。这是由于他们常常是不拥有产权或者无法负担房屋改造的投入。实际的房屋拥有者常常自己搬到高层住宅,虽然是地址的注册人,却已经不住在里弄,对保养房屋这件事模棱两可。于是,一个简单的解决方式就是将房屋租给打工者,他们没有户口,很容易被重新安置或者驱逐。
里弄的真实面貌也是复杂的,总有一天会被拆掉,为另一座购物广场或摩天大楼腾出空间,而拆迁会给房屋所有者带来丰厚的补偿金。因此,很多房东心满意足地等待开发商或当地政府的决定,一旦在他们的旧房产上建造高楼,就能领走丰厚的意外之财。
缺乏维护的后果是整体的杂乱和衰败,视这些街区为暂时住所的租客们更是加剧了里弄的衰败。在小巷中行走会给人一种穿过类似王家卫的《2046》或者雷利·史考特的《银翼杀手》的那种“地下世界”中的感受。在“地下世界”里,穷人在衰败的房子里受折磨,而周围的上层阶级居住在光彩夺目的摩天大楼里。因此,“居住在里弄”在公众心中是一种负面形象。很多跟我对话过的中国人都不理解,为什么我喜欢住在弄堂里,他们常常把里弄描述为 “不够21世纪”甚至“倒退”。
但如果摈弃了里弄,就等同于忽视很多其它传统的都市低层住宅,例如柏林的Hinterhofen、阿姆斯特丹的Hofjes,或是伦敦的Mews。这些历史街区都曾遭到大规模地破坏。然而近年来,保留下的部分却成为了城市里最热门的房产,因为它们承载了一些历史痕迹,一种无形的历史感,还有一种令人向往的亲密感,而这种亲密感是在活力大都市中非常缺乏的。这个趋势不限于欧洲,近来,东京和新加坡的低层住宅也变成了城市最高端的房地产。
在上海,里弄的绅士化正在进行中,但进行地有些不同。前面提到的城市中,虽然换了居住群体,但传统房屋仍然保持着原本的住宅用途,而上海的里弄正越来越多地转变为商业用途。新天地是迄今为止最极端的代表,一片传统房屋的完全复制品却被用作购物和娱乐。其他地区,例如田子坊和永康路酒吧街,也显示出传统生活方式在面对消费主义时的困难。但这些改造后的里弄仍然非常重要,因为它们依然是拥挤的里弄生活方式的记录者,也对这座都市未来的身份认同至关重要。
我期待着上海会出现更好的城市复兴项目,不仅能保持建筑形象,也能兼顾曾经富有生命力的集体主义生活方式。其中,一种想法是将里弄转变为给学生或创业者的房屋。改善一些基本的卫生条件和设施后,养老住宅也是一个很合适的想法。上述这些目标群体通常都不介意住在面积小的地方,特别是那些寻求能与街坊邻居有更多互动的老年人。

When I moved to China in 2008, my first practical concern was finding a good place to live. Coming from the Netherlands, where most people live in small terraced houses — or in my case, on a farm — I was very excited to live in a skyscraper in a dynamic metropolitan environment. Once I arrived, however, I was surprised that large parts of Shanghai were low-rise as well, albeit much more densely packed than I was used to.

My first house was an apartment on the 17th floor of an anonymous suburban high-rise. Within my compound alone, there were 23 other towers exactly like mine. After a while, I came to like the idea of living in a less anonymous neighborhood where I might actually know my neighbors. I decided to move into one of Shanghai’s lane houses to feel more a part of the city. Such lane houses, or lilong, refer to the city's traditional residential communities built around a network of alleys leading off a main street.

My Chinese relatives helped me find a handsome house in a lilong neighborhood. Although the area had seen better days, it still featured high ceilings, wooden floors, a split-level layout, and other architectural details characteristic of the lilong style. I sacrificed panoramic views of the city for a small, five-meter roof terrace on which to hang my laundry or enjoy a cup of tea.

To the untrained eye, it may seem that Shanghai’s high-rise compounds have little in common with a lilong. However, to an architect, there are a few broad similarities. Both constitute mass housing blocks where space is parceled out rationally, so as to maximize the number of residents within it. In both cases, the compound is surrounded by a high wall with a limited number of entrances, isolating the area from the outside world and encouraging people to share facilities, thereby fostering a sense of community.

Of course, one crucial difference is that the feeling of occupying a shared space is omnipresent in a lilong, where people are much more likely to interact with their neighbors. This has been sacrificed in high-rise estates, where large amounts of green space between buildings extend walking distances, privileges openness, and leads to fewer interactions between residents. Additionally, high-rise apartments tend to be much larger and come equipped with their own kitchens and bathrooms, so there is no need to share with others.

According to the Shanghai Statistical Yearbook, during the first decade of the 21st century, on average 50,000 lilong housing units disappeared every year. The majority were replaced by modern high-rises. The figures make for grim reading, especially when we consider that the actual number may be even higher. Lilong play a key part in the narrative of Shanghai’s urban planning today — namely, how to protect the city’s architectural heritage.

I quickly fell in love with my lilong house. Curiously, though, while I was working on my book “Shanghai New Towns,” many local people I interviewed said they preferred living in high-rises with modern sanitation and amenities to living in a lilong and similar old neighborhoods. At the time this shocked me, but now, having experienced both forms of housing, I can understand why.

One main problem is that residents of lilong and other traditional low-rise areas feel less responsible for their homes. This is because they usually neither own the property nor can afford to invest in it. The homeowners — who may be registered to the address without actually living there anymore — have usually moved out to a high-rise themselves, and also feel equivocal about maintaining the property. A simple solution is to rent out their property to migrant workers — who, without local residence permits, can be easily relocated or simply sent away.

The picture is complicated by the ubiquitous threat that the lilong will be destroyed in favor of another mall or skyscraper, both of which carry lucrative compensation fees for homeowners. Thus many landlords are content to wait for the moment that a developer or local government decides to build a shopping mall or skyscraper on top of their old property, and collect the windfall that comes with it.

The result of this lack of maintenance is a general cluttering and decaying of property, exacerbated by the transient lifestyles of people who treat such neighborhoods as merely a temporary residence. Walking through the lanes can give one a feeling of moving through a kind of social underworld akin to Wong Kar-wai’s “2046” or Ridley Scott’s “Blade Runner,” where the poor languish in decaying housing, while all around the upper classes inhabit glittering skyscrapers.

Consequently, the public image of living in a lilong is rather negative. Most Chinese people I speak to often describing it as “backward” and “not 21st-century enough.” Yet turning our collective backs on the lilong would be to ignore many other examples of traditional, urban, low-rise housing, such as Berlin’s Hinterhofe, Amsterdam’s hofjes, or London’s mews. These structures were historically pilloried and have been destroyed on a large scale too.

More recently, however, the remaining ones have become some of the hottest properties in these cities, as they carry a certain patina, an intangible sense of history, a desirable feeling of intimacy despite being located in the midst of dynamic, modern cities. The trend is not limited to Europe; these days, low-rise accommodations in both Tokyo and Singapore are some of these cities’ most upscale properties.

In Shanghai the gentrification of the lilong is also underway, though it is playing out slightly differently. Whereas in the aforementioned cities, such traditional housing has retained its original residential purpose, albeit for a different group of residents, in Shanghai the lilong is increasingly being repurposed as commercial property.

The Xintiandi area stands as the most extreme example of this to date: a full replica of traditional housing devoted to shopping and entertainment. Other areas, such as Tianzifang and the now partly closed Yongkang Road bar street, attest to the difficulty of preserving traditional ways of living in the face of consumerism. But they are also evidence that the way of life in a densely packed lilong is important — even essential — to the future identity of this metropolis.

Local governments could inject new life into urban regeneration projects by combining preservation of the original architecture and lifestyle with innovative, targeted housing solutions. One idea would be to transform lilong into housing for students or first-time buyers. Similarly, housing for the elderly would be a strong alternative if basic sanitation and facilities could be improved. Neither of these groups are too fussy about floor space, and they would likely thrive in the social environment a lilong house can offer.


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October 2016
Copyright: Urban Language

Research & Consult


 

Research & Consult at Vanke

February 2017
Since February 2017 Harry den Hartog works as researcher and consultant on new town planning and design issues at Vanke.
 

Research on residential high-rise

Since January 2015 (ongoing)
Research with Tongji University on carbon emissions and sustainable development of residential high-rise complexes in the Yangtze Delta.
 

Living on Water

2015
Urban Language performed preliminary research on possibilities for floating neighborhoods in China, commissioned by DeltaSync
 

Salon and excursion on urban villages

November 2014
Organizing a salon and visits to Shanghai-based non-profit groups for the World Banks main economic expert and specialist on climate change, with as central theme the role of urban villages, the position of migrants and gentrification.
 

Resilient Port Development

November 2014
Capacity building by workshop in Singapore on resilient port development in the context of urbanizing deltas, organised by the Future Cities Laboratory at ETH and Delft University of Technology.
 

New Town development in Zhejiang

2014
Consulting for World Bank on a New Town development in Zhejiang Province
 

Urban Sustainability in China

2013
Research on urban sustainability and liveability in Chinese new towns commissioned by the European Commission.
 

Urban Design Workshop in India

November-December 2012
Urban Language was invited to participate in a 10-day cross-disciplinairy urban design workshop on the development of a new town in central India.
 

Research for Moscow Urban Forum 2012

Autumn 2012
Urban Language was asked as Chinese representative by the organizing committee of the Moscow International Urban Forum «Emerging World Cities» to do preliminary research on the quality of life as experienced by residents of Beijing and Shanghai.
 

Dutch New Worlds

Scenarios in Physical Planning and Design in the Netherlands, 1970-2000
Shanghai - Zurich - Rotterdam, June 2012
"Our decisions shape our future, but we know little about how. To find out, planners and designers construct vivid images of what could be."
Urban Language translated Christian Salewski's fascinating book on the use of scenarios in physical planning and design in the Netherlands into Dutch.
 

Edge of Public

Exhibition + book + forum in Hong Kong's Kowloon Park, curated by Liu Yuyang, Li Xiangning, and Harry den Hartog
Hong Kong, 16 February - 23 April, 2012
In the countless new town developments in China, we witnessed an increasingly privatized domain both spatially and socially. What is the real shape of the public domain and how can architects respond to this phenomenon?
 

Critical advice on developing a new town (2)

Liaoning, 2011
Urban Language was asked to give an independent critical reflection on existing plans for a new town near Shenyang supplemented by suggestions for further development.
 

Redevelopment plan for an island

Vladivostok / Shanghai, 2011
Urban Language consulted with the international communications and strategy to be followed, and made a master plan, in a design competition regarding the redevelopment of a Russian island near Vladivostok.
 

Critical advice on developing a new town (1)

Beijing, 2011
Urban Language was asked to give an independent critical reflection on existing plans for a new town near Beijing supplemented by suggestions for further development.
 

Advice on various international projects

Shanghai, 2011
In the autumn of 2011, Urban Language worked on several studies and consultations commissioned by professionals related with Tongji University.
 

Urban China magazine

Shanghai, 2011 - 2012
Urban Language consults regularly with the urban research center of Urban China magazine. Harry den Hartog was member of the editorial board of #51 and #52.
 

Area development in rural Henan

Zhengzhou, 2011
Urban Language has been consulted by a local developer for independent critical advice in an area development in rural Henan.

 

Shanghai New Towns

Searching for community and identity in a sprawling metropolis
Shanghai, 2010
Research on the rapid urbanization and decentralization in the direct controlled municipality Shanghai, resulting in the book Shanghai New Towns - Searching for community and identity in a sprawling metropolis, published by 010 Publishers.
 

From Almere to Qingpu

Shanghai, 13-19 May 2010
Urban Language coordinated an excursion for the International New Town Institute (INTI) with as central theme the new towns and new cities around Shanghai.
 

Urban Flux

Beijing, Summer 2009
The Chinese magazine Urban Flux invited Harry den Hartog as a guest-editor to make this special issue on Dutch Architects and China. The magazine also discusses the state of architecture in the Netherlands.
 

BNSP workshop discussion

Amsterdam, 22 October 2009
Urban Language organized a workshop discussion on the urbanization of the Dutch countryside during a BNSP Congress.
 

Shanghai Dialogues

Shanghai, 17 October 2009
Urban Language mediated the Chinese contacts during a Sino-Dutch conference, as part of the Shanghai International Creative Industry Week.
 

Shanghai Globalism

Shanghai, 2009
Organisation of a study tour to the 'One City - Nine Towns' development around Shanghai commissioned by New York University.
 

Urban Galleries

Nanjing - Rotterdam, 2009
Organization of a study trip through Germany and the Netherlands for a group of young Chinese designers and critics with a special interest in museums
 

Are cities more important than countries?

Rotterdam, 2008-2009
Publication commissioned by the Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS) on the occasion of its 50th anniversary
 

Urban Meetings

Rotterdam, October 2008
Urban Language made a series of reports and an essay, commissioned by the Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS), meant to explore the outlines of an 'Urban Agenda' for the 21st century.
 

A Wider View

Apeldoorn, summer and spring 2008
Urban Language was embedded as reporter during the conference A Wider View on Cultural Landscape Challenges in Europe, which makes part of the Apeldoorn International Triennial. The report formed a basis for the 'Radio Kootwijk Frequency', a call to strengthen the quality of all landscapes in Europe.
 

Vreewijk

Rotterdam, 2008
Design study on urban renewal and restructuring of a monumental neighbourhood
 

PowerNotes IABR

Rotterdam, 2007
Urban Language wrote and edited PowerNotes, the weblog of the 3rd International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam. The log gives background information, interviews, impressions, photography, video's, quotes from visitors and special guests, and critical reviews.
 

The power of small scale

Rotterdam - Almere, 2007
Design study for urban renewal in the Dutch newtown Almere.
 

Huig

Executive-editor of Huig#8 and Huig#9
Rotterdam, 2007
Harry den Hartog was executive-editor of Huig#8 and Huig#9, the biannual magazine of the Rotterdam Academy of Architecture and Urban Design.
 

NL2040 - Hints for later

The Hague - Rotterdam, 2007
Harry den Hartog wrote a number of columns, reports and an extensive essay as input for a series of meetings and debates with the aim to give an 'alternative' vision on future spatial tasks for The Netherlands.
 

Living farmyards

Overijssel, 2006
The Dutch Province of Overijssel counts thousands of farmyards. Yearly several hundreds of them loose their agricultural function. The province asked us to do a research on the possibilities for transformation of abandoned and old farmyards.
 

Private Territory

Study on the rise of private controlled outdoor spaces in the Netherlands
Rotterdam, 2005-2006
Following his graduation project at the Academy of Architecture and Urban Design in Rotterdam Harry den Hartog researched the rise of private controlled territories in The Netherlands.
 

EXURBIA

Living outside the city
Rotterdam, 2005-2006
The book Exurbia - living outside the city, made by Harry den Hartog, criticizes the fast changing Dutch countryside. The new spatial policy in the Netherlands seems to be a threat for the countryside and the edges between urban and rural. This book gives some critical comment on the new policy, supplemented with appropriate suggestions.

Our Publications


 

China Urban Lab: Nut en noodzaak van experimenten

Published in: Rooilijn
Amsterdam, November 2016
Article for Rooilijn, a journal by the University of Amsterdam on science and policy in spatial planning
 

Back to Basics

Published in: Mark #63
Chengdu, August/September 2016
Article on Liu Jiakun's West Village for Mark magazine
 

Ya Chang Art Center

Published in: Mark #56
Shanghai, June-July 2015
Article on the red-tiled Ya Chang Art Center for Mark magazine.
 

Attempts to Control Urbanization

Published in: Volume #39
Amsterdam, April 2014
Article on China’s Hukou System: Attempts to Control Urbanization by Strictly Separating Urban and Rural
 

Urban Tensions in the Yangtze River Delta

Published in: IOSPress
Delft, April 2014
Essay contribution in the book 'New Urban Configurations'.
 

Eastern Promises

Published in: Hantje Catz Verlag
Vienna, June 2013
We were invited by MAK (Austrian Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art) to contribute a series of critical articles on pioneering architectural projects for an exhibit and accompanying catalog 'Contemporary Architecture and Spatial Practices in East Asia'.
 

Shopping for History

Published in: Mark #43
Zhujiajiao, April/May 2013
Article on an urban renewal project in an ancient Chinese water town west of Shanghai.
 

Made in China

Published in: MARK #45
Dalian, Aug/Sept 2013
Article written at the request of MARK about the Dalian Conference Center, designed by Coop Himmelb(l)au: a prime example of thoroughness and precision work.
 

重细节与长远规划

Published in: Society and Public Welfare
March 2013
中国应复制与改进欧洲城市规划与设计的途径
Urban Language contributed an article at the request of a renowned Chinese magazine
 

Utopia or Dystopia 乌托邦,反乌托邦?

Published in: Modern Weekly (China)
Rotterdam, 3 November 2012
Urban Language spoke with Joep van Lieshout: Do we choose F1 or a Volkswagen Santana?
 

Publication on Moscow's new town development

Shanghai, Autumn 2012
Urban Language was invited as critical independent expert to contribute a chapter to a book on conurbations, commissioned by the Moscow Urban Planning Institute. This book serves as a moment of reflection in the development of a new city near Moscow.
 

Quality towers over quantity in building cities

Published in: China Daily
Shanghai, 22 June 2012
Opinion piece for the newspaper China Daily, by Harry den Hartog. The inducement for writing this article was the Joint Declaration on the EU-China Partnership on Urbanization, signed by European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and China's Vice-Premier Li Keqiang on 3 May 2012.
 

From central control towards laissez faire

Published in: S+RO
Shanghai, June 2012
Article about the similarities and differences between the Netherlands and China in the field of urban and regional planning.
 

Everyday Theme Parks 日常主题公园

Published in: Urban China magazine #52
Shanghai, May 2012
Essay about the role of malls in contemporary China, with references to worldwide experiences, the decay of existing cities, an urban renaissance, and of course Michael Sorkin's 'Variations on a theme park: the new American city and the end of public space'.
 

From Qingpu to Jiading

Published in: T+A magazine
Shanghai, January 2012
Paper on the urbanization of the countryside around Shanghai and the role of architects in creating new cities.
 

Nanjing Perspectives

Published in: MARK magazine #32
Nanjing, June/July 2011
Conversation with Steven Holl on the design and building process of the Art & Architecture Museum in Nanjing.
 

Horticultural Exposition Xi'an

Published in: de Architect
Xi'an, May 2011
Report on the International Horticultural Exposition 2011 Xi'an.
 

Haphazard growth in a land of plenty

Published in: DAMn°28
Shanghai, April 2011
Essay on extremely fast and uncoordinated urban developments in Shanghai.
 

Creación de comunidad e identidad en los pueblos nuevos de Shanghai

Published in: Materia Arquitectura #2
Shanghai, November 2010
Essay on the creation of new communities and new identities in Shanghai for a Chilean magazine.
 

World Expo Shanghai

Published in: de Architect
Shanghai, May 2010
Report on the World Expo in Shanghai for the Dutch magazine 'the Architect'.
 

Bubbles in Shanghai: decentralization, speculation and the housing shortage

Published in: SR+O
Shanghai, April 2010
Essay on the effects of spatial and administrative decentralization, increasing speculation and huge housing shortage.
 

Letter from Sichuan

Published in: MARK magazine #23
Chengdu, December 2009 - January 2010
Report about reconstruction activities in the earthquake devastated area.
 

Green Fields, Orange Clouds

Chicago, September 2009
Essay on urban - rural relations in American cities, notably Chicago
 

Museum as billboard

Published in: MARK magazine #21
Guangzhou, August-September 2009
Visiting 'Times Museum' in Guangzhou.
 

Greener City, Better Life

Published in: Urban China #37
Shanghai, August 2009
Essay for the magazine Urban China on the meaning of parks as public spaces, in east and west
 

Urbanus reinvents the wheel

Published in: MARK magazine #20
Guangzhou, June-July 2009
Hakka Tulou in the 21st century. An experiment with social housing by Urbanus.
 

City in a city: Linked Hybrid

Published in: de Architect
Beijing, May 2009
That it is possible to combine climatic, economic and social sustainability in an overall concept has been demonstrated by Steven Holl Architects with Linked Hybrid.
 

Dutch architects building global architecture in China?

Published in: Urban Flux #7
Shanghai, May 2009
Essay on the works and experiences of Dutch architects in China.
Urban Language was also invited as a guest-editor for a special edition about 'Dutch architecure'. (circa 60 pages). The magazine also discusses recent projects and developments in the Netherlands.
 

Architecture as afterimage

Conversation with Ben van Berkel
Published in: id+c
Nanjing, May 2009
Urban Language interviewed Ben van Berkel on his design philosophy.
 

Sidewalk versus Mall

Public spaces under threat
Published in: Urban Flux #6
Shanghai, April 2009
Essay on the similarities and differences between the Netherlands and China, regarding the use and meaning of public spaces.
 

Building your own house

Published in: id+c
Nanjing, April 2009
Column on private commissioned housing in the Netherlands for the Chinese-language magazine id+c
 

Architecture in the Netherlands

Published in: id+c
Nanjing, January 2009
Essay on recent developments in the field of architecture in the Netherlands. This essay is also an introduction for an extended special on Dutch Design.
 

Greenery & Community

Community gardens in New York
Published in: Club Donny #1
Rotterdam, Spring/Summer 2008
Essay for Club Donny, a new biennial magazine on the personal experience of nature in the urban environment.
 

Beijing 080808

The meaning of the Olympic Games for Beijing
Published in: de Architect
Beijing, August 2008
Host country China intends to use the Olympic Games that will take place this year in Beijing to show off what it has achieved. What is the impact of the Olympic Games on this city?
 

The Limits to Growth?

How Beijing is preparing for the future
Published in: de Architect
Beijing, August 2008
Beijing, like Shanghai, wants to present itself as a model city for the future. How will Beijing continue to develop itself after the Games?
 

Olympic Games, a motor for urban renewal

Conversation with Kees Christiaanse
Published in: NAi Publishers
Rotterdam, May 2008
Urban Language interviewed Kees Christiaanse and others about the usefulness of Olympic Games in the Netherlands. These conversations are included in the book Olympic Fire, published by NAI Publishers and edited by Winy Maas.
 

Tamed 'wild living'

Municipal management versus freedom of building
Published in: de Architect
Almere, June 2007
Over the coming years the municipality of Almere will make 30,000 sites available to private individuals so that they can build homes as they want to. A new balance has to be found between municipal management and this new freedom.
 

City and Countryside

Physical planning and design in contemporary China
Published in: de Architect
Shanghai/Beijing, May 2006
The relation between the rural and urban economy have been changing ever since China became a World Trade Organization member in 2001. To overcome the dichotomy between city and countryside, farmers must find a way to join the world economy.
 

Collective Housing in Suburbia

Published in: SR&O
Rotterdam, October 2005
Article (in Dutch) on new forms of collective housing in suburbs and new towns in the Netherlands.
 

Correspondent for Mark magazine

Published in: Mark magazine
Since 2009
Harry den Hartog regularly contributes articles to Mark magazine, a platform for the practice and perception of architecture at the dawn of the third millennium.
 

Correspondent for ArchiNed

Published in: ArchiNed
Since 2004
Harry den Hartog regularly contributes articles to ArchiNed and made temporarily part of the editorial team.

News about us


 

ZAOjiu talk on 'Shared Urbanism

9 September 2017
ZAOjiu talk on 'Shared Urbanism"
 

Interviewed on metropolitan agriculture by Shenzhen TV

Shenzhen, July 2016
Interviewed on metropolitan agriculture by Shenzhen TV
 

TEDx

TEDx talk in Caohejing High-Tec Park, Shanghai
Shanghai, 28 October 2015
 

Urban Agenda

November 2013
Visiting Beijing as participant at EU China Urbanisation Partnership Forum.
 

OCT LOFT Talk

invited as panel-member by Urbanus
Shenzhen, 7 December 2013
 

Urban Interiors in contemporary China

Invited speaker at World Interiors Event
Amsterdam,7 September 2013
 

Lecturing in Italy

Invited by two universities in Italy for guest-lectures
Milano/Pavia, May 2013
 

Creating liveable cities in China

Debate at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne
Lausanne, 23 October 2012
 

Study session on high-rise in Asia

Shanghai, 19 September 2012
 

History and Design Studio Shanghai

Workshop and lecture at Politecnico di Torino
Turin, 2012
 

Debate in Rockbund Art Museum: Disappearing Rural Shanghai

Discussion on 'Disappearing Rural Shanghai'
Shanghai, 29 June 2012
 

Book presentation 'Edge of Public'

Hong Kong, 16 February 2012
Today our bilingual booklet Edge of Public was presented in Hong Kong's Kowloon Park, during the opening ceremony of the Hong Kong & Shenzhen Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism \ Architecture 2011-2012.
 

Shanghai New Towns to see on the Shenzhen architecture biennial

Shenzhen, 8 December 2011 - 10 February 2012
 

Needed: Architecture with Chinese characteristics

Interviewed by Shanghai Daily
Shanghai, 25&26 October 2011
 

Sanghay ile Istanbul

Turkish-language review of Shanghai New Towns
September 11, 2011
 

Rural Kitchen

Lecture and jury member during the Rural Kitchen workshop
Chongming Island, Fall 2009
 

Beijing International Book Fair 2011

Beijing, 30 August - 5 September 2011
 

Shanghai New Towns rewarded by 'Best Dutch Book Designs 2010'

Exhibited from 11 June to 17 July 2011 in the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam
Amsterdam, 11 June to 17 July 2011
 

Book review by Time + Architecture magazine

Chinese-language review of our book 'Shanghai New Towns'
Shanghai, May/June 2011
 

Interviewed by Urban China magazine

Shanghai, June 2011
...on sprawling cities and the edge between urban and rural.

 

Ontwerpen aan China

Rotterdam, May 2011
Interviewed by Arjen Oosterman
 

Public lecture and debate in the Shanghai Study Center of the Hong Kong University

Shanghai, 7 March 2011
Presentation of the main findings of our recently published book "Shanghai New Towns - Searching for community and identity in a sprawling metropolis".
 

Exported to China

Shanghai, February 2011
'Shanghai New Towns. Searching for community and identity in a sprawling metropolis' is also available now in Chinese bookstores.
 

Book Launch and debate in Trouw Amsterdam / De Verdieping

Amsterdam, 30 November 2010
Presentation of our book Shanghai New Towns - Searching for community and identity in a sprawling metropolis followed by a debate.
 

Presentation in Tai Wu

Rotterdam, 20 September 2010
Presentation in Tai Wu for an association of architects on recent architectural developments in China.
 

Local wisdom and globalization

Shanghai, 20 July 2010
Urban Language was member of the jury during the CUMULUS Shanghai Conference 2010 at the College of Design & Innovation.
 

First copy Shanghai New Towns

Shanghai, 14 May 2010
Today a first (preliminary) copy of our book 'Shanghai New Towns - Searching for community and identity in a sprawling metropolis' was handed over to Sun Jiwei, the District Governor of Shanghai's Jiading district, during a conference organized in cooperation with INTI, in the VIP lounge of the Dutch Pavilion 'Happy Street' during the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai.
 

Presentation on urban developments in Shanghai

Delft, 28 November 2009
Presentation on the turbulent urban developments in Shanghai during the international conference 'The New Urban Question - Urbanism beyond Neo-Liberalism' that took place from November 26th to 28th, 2009 at Zuiderkerk in Amsterdam and Delft University of Technology (TU Delft).
 

Interviewed by the Chinese-language newsmagazine Modern Weekly

Shanghai, 3 October 2009
This well-read newsmagazine, which has a wide circulation, interviewed Harry den Hartog on the changing urban-rural relations in China.
 

Interviewed by Urban China magazine

Shanghai, March 2009
We were interviewed by Chinese-language Urban China magazine on 'the ideal city'.
 

Looking for green

The Hague (Nl.), 29 September 2008
Lecture on community gardens during the debate 'Greenspotting Haaglanden' in Stroom The Hague
 

Book launch Exurbia - Living outside the city

Amsterdam, 5 January 2007
Today a first copy of our book was handed over to Government Advisor on Landscape Dirk Sijmons in Architectura & Natura.