Modern housing complexes in South Korea: typological evolution and urban adaptations

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The contemporary South Korean landscape is characterised by a massive display of modern apartment buildings. They are omnipresent in their monotonous manifestation and represent the dream of the Korean population. Serial mass housing is a typology that has had a great diffusion all over the world, but how has modern housing developed in South Korea? To this end, what are the resulting adaptations? This paper retraces these key evolutional aspects. Methodologically, it draws on a scholarly literature review as well as on-site photographic surveys, analysing both the urban and architectural transformation from the early modernisation period to the present condition of contemporary housing. An historical background introduces Korean traditional urban houses, to be used as a context to describe the contemporary modern city that has developed since the 1960s. The main emphasis is then placed on the urbanisation process that fully matured during the 1980s together with a focus on the mass housing typology as the main pivot in the urban transformation. Finally, the paper will draw a parallel between modern Western theories and Korean applications.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAMPS Proceedings Series 7
EditorsK. Day
PublisherUCL Press
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2016
Externally publishedYes
EventFuture Housing: Global Cities and Regional Problems - Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 9 Jun 201610 Jun 2016

Publication series

NameAMPS Proceedings Series
ISSN (Print)2398-9467


ConferenceFuture Housing
Internet address


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