[IN]formal: Infrastructure and Citizenship in Manila's Undercity
Navarrete, Jose Miguel
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The influx of rural migrants to urban centres in the developing world has resulted in a dichotomous urbanization and the proliferation of informal settlements. Manila, the capital of the Philippines, is no stranger to this narrative. In the socio-economically divided city of Manila, informal settlers are subject to the twin hostilities of miserable living conditions and city policies that advocate for demolition and relocation. This thesis explores the antithetical approach to present exclusionary practices. It aims, through a series of architectural interventions that are visible, flexible, and democratic, to develop an infrastructural framework that is both a tangible improvement to life in the informal settlement and is emblematic of a legitimized place in the city. Baseco Compound, an enclave of informality within formal Manila, will be the testing ground for this thesis.