For Those Who Will Come, Episode 8: Alice Covatta and Ville Refuge

Alice Covatta on leading a university studio exploring urban cartography and data to map “doorway” neighbourhoods in Montreal.

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We are more familiar with architecture’s ability to keep people out than to welcome them, and we are more familiar with migration as an emergency–a temporary and extreme condition like a refugee camp–that is supposed to disappear once the newcomers dissolve into the population. The reality is more complex. There are many kinds of migrants: from solo activists seeking political asylum to families fleeing climate change or workers moving by choice from the countryside to the city. They arrive at different speeds and with a variety of resources and needs. Building for those who will come is always imperfect; it reveals many limitations of architecture and questions architectural responsibility.

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