Hsiu-Ju Chang

Advanced Housing Design

Blijkeuken: Redesigning the Fat Type Housing with Kitchens for Social Making

‘Blijkeuken’ is a housing project in Blijdorp, Rotterdam, which establishes a community-based, caring system by challenging the kitchen's status as a place for domestic chores and therefore the existing construct of housing typology in Dutch society. By inserting cooking facilities into spaces where different types of people interact, the kitchens themselves become bridges for communication and interaction. Additionally, this project works with a deep, thick volume of ‘Fat Type’, which carved out a naturally lit atrium with a sculptural staircase connecting the dwelling units with the urban environment. Collective kitchens arrayed along the staircase further encourage social encounters and collectivize domestic chores for the residents. In response to contemporary social issues such as gender inequality, the housing crisis and post-pandemic living, the project introduces a non-profit-oriented, cooperative tenure type that enables various spatial and living experiments. It envisions new housing conditions of social inclusions for the upcoming decades.