User adaptation of wartime housing
LccNA 7241 G34 1978 Microfiche
LcshDwellings - Canada - Remodeling
Architecture, Domestic - Canada
Housing - Canada
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractWartime and veterans' homes, Canada's first standardized tract housing, were studied in order to identify and describe residents' adaptations since the original construction was completed (1941-1952). The subdivisions studied ranged from 150 to 350 units, and were located in Vancouver, British Columbia; Calgary, Alberta; Ajax, Ontario; Quebec City, Quebec; Fredericton, New Brunswick; and Halifax, Nova Scotia. These locations were chosen to represent characteristic changes related to Canada's major regions. A survey of thirty families in the Renfrew district of Calgary, Alberta was done to discover types, sequence, and frequency of adaptations. The relationship between demographic changes and housing changes was also investigated. Photography and observation, supplemented by archival material and interviews, were used to record changes to the original three standard unit types. Pertinent sociological and psychological studies relating to adaptation are drawn upon. This research found that minimum-standard small houses which were detached, surrounded by buildable land, and owned or controlled by residents, were continually adapted to accord with owners' needs and economic possibilities. Standardized house plans allowed residents to share ideas and skills needed to make adaptations. Physical and social conditions of adjacent areas influenced the type and amount of change. Stably-employed manual workers, and rural migrants to the city, who possessed the skills to make the adaptations themselves, were found to be satisfied with small incremental changes. The 300 dwelling units contained a population sufficient to foster development of shared community facilities, which increased opportunities for social participation outside the small homes. Therefore, residents were satisfied with more limited private spaces, as public spaces compensated for any lack by offering alternative places for childrens' and adults' activities. The evolution of a socioeconomically homogeneous working-class population resulted in shared values concerning family and neighbourhood standards, which encouraged permanent commitments to the adaptation and improvement of both the houses and the community.
Bibliography: p. 214-219.
CitationGalloway, M. B. (1978). User adaptation of wartime housing (Unpublished master's thesis). University of Calgary, Calgary, AB. doi:10.11575/PRISM/18047
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