Clip-on Urbanism examines the possibility of manufacturing, hacking, assembling and recyclingreadily available devices as a way of urban upgrade and tries to depict a near future urbanscenario which reimagines the urban envelope as an adaptive and generative interface.

With the emergence of new technologies as well as maker and hacker culture, the site ofproduction has once again been introduced into the urban. The emerging urban Homo Faber inShenzhen, whether low-tech or high-tech, produces distinctive forms of inhabiting andoccupying urban space, and provides a potential solution to current urban problems outside thereach of traditional architecture and urban planning.

Rather than a top-down approach of urban renewal which often involves destruction andforced relocation, this thesis begins at the scale of technical devices, produced, hacked andinstalled by local residences. In this way, making becomes a means of technical empowerment,an event of community building, and a strategy for urban upgrade and continuous evolvement.

By developing an infrastructure which allows reassembled modular devices to be clipped on,plugged in and attached to existing urban fabrics, the built-up environment is mediated by aseries of community “plug and play” events in an urbanism of parts.

The architectural body is constant and indefinite at the same time. The overall form already with its mere physicality, creates a first distinction between the self and its environment, leading to its figural singularity fromthe objects within the urbanized field. Its indefiniteness is described by the self-referential bodily movements thatinhabit the shared, adjacent, invisible space. Its temperance leaves remnants of existing, ambiguous conditions, referencing the profiles and silhouettes of the initial geometry. Often times, this phenomenon becomes characterized and associated through the projections of shadows, an atmospheric condition, that embody andinfiltrate the envelopes of buildings, the infrastructural mass, and the constantly shifting ground of the city.

My thesis focuses on the exploration of defining boundaries and space not through physical elements but throughimmaterial and temporal phenomenons such as sciography. I am interested in deconstructing the notion thatarchitecture and its effects are constrained to the extents of its boundaries, and in contrast, they occupy the negative space between built forms within urban environments.

Throughout the prescribed air space of the city, theindefiniteness of forms intersects, instilling the projections of program, events, and visual connectivity. Using projective geometry techniques in similarity to shadow puppetry, the process of mapping and arranging forms becomes inverted, as discreet two-dimensional silhouettes dictate the composition of ambiguous geometries in three-dimensional space. By doing so, the projection of shadows choreographs circulation and program in specificity to the
time of day. Shadow becomes a defined medium for space to become place in relation to time and event.


Tonle Sap Lake, the largest freshwater lake in Southeastern Asia that has supported Cambodia since the Angkorian Civilization dated back to the 8th Century, is under severe environmental and social crisis today. The lake is home to 300,000 people who live in floating villages, the majority of whom are illegal immigrants. In between the rainy and dry season, the lake expands and shrinks exponentially, forcing villagers to migrate seasonally as nomadic tribes. Without any infrastructure, the lake is increasingly polluted by domestic trash disposal, which puts the life of villagers and the fishing industry at stake. As the lake contributes majorly to the fish and agricultural farming of Cambodia, once its biosphere collapses, the whole country's economy would be severely impacted.An unstable habitat as such urges us to rethink the role that city, infrastructure, and architecture plays in postcolonial, marginalized, rural territories, and how to build a city that rearticulates the relations between human and nature.

Toward A Floating Urbanism is a hypothesis that by building collective settlements on water, pre-industrial societies can skip industrialization process and form a new type of floating urbanism that is mobile, connected, and responsive to nature and local culture. It embodies water treatment into the design of architecture and the spatial flow of the city, where infrastructure becomes an agile and integrated participant of various urban scenes. Exploring the possibility of making water a habitable new "ground", Toward A Floating Urbanism delineates a vision for the future of Tonle Sap Lake as a particular place, while ultimately sets out to ask a larger question: based on the reality of climate change, including sea-level rise and therefore land scarcity, and post-war housing crisis for borderless, homeless nomads, how do we embrace water as an experimental laboratory while preserving the unique identity of the place?

This is a project located in Hamilton County, Nebraska. It
features the following:

A building that extends over 20 miles, but may be bigger.

A building that is made of multiple buildings.

A building that is totally interiorized and features the convergence of three main programs:


The building is playing as infrastructure.

There is very little difference between the building and the road, therefore it is hard to get in and get out.

Road rage is very useful for this building because:



Mostly invisible, but physically influential, air pollution claims 1 of 9 lives and threaten the future of our cities. 92% of the population in the world, rural or urban, lives in places with air quality above the WHO guidelines. In Beijing, the concentration of pm 2.5 particles in itself is 7.3 times the safety level, resulting in an annual death of 1,944,436 individuals.

In a world of inconsistent governance, where policy-making alone does not seems to protect the citizens, it rests upon human capitals to confront the crisis on an individual or communal basis. The project capitalizes the mediatic and mediation potential of hollow fiber membrane (straw-like nanometer-scale material) as a building material for a respiratory architecture. The proposed are three architectural artifacts–interventions that minimize heat loss while filter undesirable particles—for survival.

At the body scale, Baleen Coat is a waist-long wearable capable of air filtration when activated by are-arming kit (inflator). Encased by the coat, citizens can amplify their breathing surfaces through a field of tubular pores on the garment. Skin-graft is a spongy fenestration system for existing buildings. The dome is an urban scale intervention that regulates airborne content with maximized volume enclosed.

The collapse of air as a collective common has induced a new surface-to-volume relationship. These artifacts are the beginning of an alternative lifestyle—a new way to breathe, a new way to live, and a new way to be.


In 2046, the political crossing of Hong Kong’s capitalism and mainland China’s socialism will manifest in a brand new public library. With the increased infrastructural connectivity and economic integration with the “Greater Bay Area” megalopolis of China, Hong Kong will reap the benefits of strong GDP, financial and trade collaborations, and affordable real estate. Inevitably, the increased interaction between Hong Kong and the mainland cities will heighten other social issues such as Mandarin taking over Cantonese and English, simplified Chinese substituting traditional Chinese, and the adaptation of the mainland Chinese education system. As much as both governments will reiterate the harmony between Hong Kong and the mainland, it is very likely that the angst, frustration, and disappointment in society will have culminated. The antagonism between authorities and oppositions, the collective and the individual, and permanence and impermanence will always exist.

As a fundamental socio-economic symbol of a city, a public library has been chosen as the scope of the thesis. While it is a physical symbol of the agglomeration of civic culture, it is also a symbolic image of the collection of knowledge in society. The first libraries housed physical materials such as books, documents, and other materials, and served as a sanctuary for the storage of knowledge. With the ease of printing and mass production, books were no longer a scarcity, and the early development of Internet and the limited but free access to the virtual world in the library became thing to be sought after. Today, with the extensive coverage of virtual networks and connectivity all around us, people have access to free knowledge and information at home, atwork, and in their palms. The library of the future should be thought of as a transcendent and genuine physical space, where it is entirely about the physical and collective experience. It should be comparable to a musical concert, where being present is relished; or perhaps a shopping mall, where the experience is just as appealing as the outcome.

The embedded politics and antagonisms of the thesis is further addressed in the selection of the site, which is the most symbolic of its judicial significance and colonial history. The Court of Final Appeal, built in 1912, served as the Supreme Court and the Legislative Council building, prior to itscurrent state. Designed by British architects Aston Webb and Ingress Bell, who also designed the façade of Buckingham Palace and the V&A Museum, it is a building of Victorian style and represents a strong colonial presence and reminder. Next to it, the Statue Square, where a bronze statue of Queen Victoria once stood, has become a critical place of protests and gatherings over the years. Both the Court and the Square retain a close proximity to the central government offices and the Chinese Army Barracks. The location is said to be most representative of Hong Kong, with heights, economy, history, capitalistic values, and cultural symbols all in one.

The project is developed in sections, a testimony to the unique ground/groundless conditions of Hong Kong.


Water was the driving agent behind the creation of the main characteristics of the first cities, going as far back as the urban settlements of Greece, and the Roman and the Ottoman Empires. As cities became modernized, infrastructures progressed with technology. Water, which used to be the visible source of everyday life has been reduced to trivial clues such as fire hydrants and abandoned ancient water fountains. Effortless accessibility of water in every household has eclipsed its social values to a meaningless stream flowing from the kitchen tap.

Recently, an awareness for the modern infrastructures causing ecological damage arose during the discussions focusing on climate change and anticipated water crisis around the world. TEMA, “The Turkish Foundation for Combating Soil Erosion, Reforestation and the Protection of Natural Habitats”, is expecting to face periods of severe water scarcities leading to extinctions of rivers and agriculture by 2050, especially in the Eastern Mediterranean and South Eastern Anatolia ac- cording to their report titled “Endangered Water Resources of Turkey”. In other words, the Fertile Crescent, where the agriculture was born and the mankind became sedentary, is now turning into the Scarcity Crescent.

Verging the Mesopotamia, Tigris River is also one of the rivers that is expected to dry out completely due to the population growth in cities, industrial and agricultural pollution, uncontrolled urbanization, pollution of the thermal power station, and diminishing water reservoirs. The existing engineering solutions to collect, store and distribute the water require a reconsideration of pre-modern infrastructures such as aqueducts and cisterns where inhabitants were adapting their civilized order to the natural order rather than manipulating and dominating nature itself.

Located near the Tigris River, Diyarbakir allegedly was the capital of Mesopotamia in the past supply food for the city from ancient Hevsel Gardens just outside the old city walls by using the river as a water resource. In addition, the city had been providing four unique types of watermelons to the whole country and they have been representing the local culture and its people. However, two of these four types of watermelon have already become extinct. The remaining watermelons giving the city its identity and shaping its culture are also facing danger of extinction due to the upcoming draught in the near future. So does the city itself.

The task for architecture here is to develop a new infrastructural model for an adaptation of the city, its landscape, and the local culture. Currently, the city’s old walls stand as a living cultural inheritance but remains as an unfunctional infrastructure that served the city in the past. The new infrastructure will harvest the rain, by appropriating the old city walls as a living infrastructure. Depending on the ways and which the rainwater is collected, the intervention will also accommodate social, cultural and educational programs that the city needs. Moreover, at the end of the day, the harvested rain will be stored in a cistern and it will be used to irrigate Hevsel Gardens outside the city walls to nurture agriculture and the watermel- ons. Thus, the city walls will be more than simply a cultural inheritance, and it will reincarnate as the new infrastructure that links together water, agriculture and the society.

What is so interesting in the anecdote about James Stirling losing his temper over Joseph Beuy’s ‘junk’ cluttering the opening of his Staatsgalerie Stuttgart is that it raises problematic questions about architecture’s status relative to the stuff it contains: How is attention economized relative to the part vs. the whole? How do objects of desire enter each other’s orbits? One way to think about this problem is through the genre of the house museum.

A house museum can be defined as either: a. A museum that you live inside, or b. A house on display to visitors.

What becomes clear when thinking about the differences between architecture, the things it contains and the not-quite architecture, is that when a house becomes a museum, it has often been doing the work of one for many years. This work includes directing attention to things that matter: the curation of what is seen first as lifestyle and later, a collection. Architecture does this work through inscription, which serves to draw what is interesting out from its context.

What the relationship between drawing and building reveals is that actually, inscription itself has a duration; the fastest being the act of drawing on a wall or floor, while the slowest is constructing a building. If, as Wyatt Gwyon says, “you can change a line without even touching it,” perhaps architecture should always be both the duck and the rabbit in order to preempt future changes by moving drawing and building closer together. Through this fantasy of control (of display and construction tolerances) that leads to its opposite effect, the house museum disappears through overexposure, sliding between genres and modes of attention in an effort to make architecture move lithely with the present.

When talking about the famed Murr tower and its role in the definition of space and borders in Beirut during the Civil War, it should be mentioned that the tower was destroyed sometime after the end of thewar only to be replaced by an exact copy of it, reconstructed horizontally. The replica was placed 1km east of the original along what was known as The Green Line, a borderline that the tower had originally delineated through its use as a sniping post. The designation ‘green’ came on account of the vegetation that covered the border as a result of the absence of people but that was wiped out during the postwar reconstruction. Greenness was later revived through paint as the reconstructed tower engaged the Green Line once again as a medium for growth and as a public repository of archival material related to the war. The reconstructed tower took the image of the original iconic facade and extruded it along the width ofthe tower, generating space within the extruded image.

This is documentation of the reconstruction of the tower along The Green Line.

The documentation involves exhibiting a fragment of the reconstructed building, a sectional interactive model measuring 5 and a half feet and a set of construction documents, making the case that the reconstructed building actually replaced the original one.