Tang Zuo Xin: Daguan Community, My Home
Daguan Community used to be a welfare centre in Banqiao District for the military, set up by the Women’s Foundation. For 60 years, it provided shelter for low-rank soldiers, bereaved families, immigrants heading up north to make a living, or partners of foreign nationality who had just migrated here. As the city expanded, the area gradually became more commercial and its land policies revised. The houses bought by residents for millions of dollars were seen as “stolen goods” by judges. Residents were labelled “malicious invaders” and were evicted from their land, forced to demolish their homes, and sentenced to a hefty penalty for “unjust enrichment”. In 2016, the residents formed a self-help organisation and resisted for three years. Under heavy pressure of the impending fine and demolition, they finally signed an agreement to return their houses and be relocated in exchange for a three-month delay and a waiver of any penalty. By 2019, the Daguan Community was entirely dismantled.