Reclaiming Community Through Multiple Generations: Mixed-Use Housing in Portland's Chinatown

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2004-05-19

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For over half a century, the traditional Chinatown, typically located in an urban context, has become an isolated entity in which generations of Chinese and Chinese-Americans are fleeing to the suburbs. This project will focus on creating an inter-generational mixed-use housing complex that provides for community resources and services. The goal of this thesis is to encourage a reactivation of a deteriorating community through the interaction between first, second, and third generation Chinese and Chinese-Americans. This project will investigate the greater cultural context of how the family unit is composed, how an eastern typology may be adapted to the western society, and how to deal with issues concerning an "identifiable place." The site is located in Portland, Oregon's Chinatown. It is situated just north of downtown on the edge of the Willamette River. The site is nearly desolate, but shows immense promise for an activated community.

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