IMD _Institute of Media and Design
ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN | Master Thesis Project | DISSOLVED PERIPHERY | reUsing city of Calais‘ integrating structures of migration
Project description of the student
For at least 30 years the northern French city Calais has been one of the most important places in European migration history. For most refugees fleeing to Great Britain, Calais is an essential place of transit. From here, after strenuous journeys, the hurdle of crossing the English Channel is still ahead of them.
Due to the Schengen Agreement and the related Schengen border, there are so-called juxtaposed controls in Calais. Juxtaposed controls describe the relocation of a process that usually takes places in the country of destination to the country of departure.
By planning the Channel Tunnel as a railroad tunnel, considerations were made how to make the transfer from and to the British Island as easy and pleasant as possible. Border clearances should take place as soon passengers enter the train. The original idea changed when Great Britain faced high migration flows. Increasingly, Great Britain tried to keep illegal migrants away from the island by introducing juxtaposed controls.
Due to the challenging way to Great Britain, Calais developed over the years into a place of waiting. Several refugee camps were set up in and around the city. Increasing xenophobia to- wards migrants, institutional racism and seemingly impossible canal crossings have be- come part of everyday life for local migrants.
For years, migrants camps and sleeping places have been destroyed and pushed to the outermost periphery of Calais. A cycle of waiting, fear, displacement, violence, hopelessness and death seems to be the faith of those, who have accepted an arduous journey in search of hope, peace and a better life.
Nowadays, Calais has become less a place of transit, than more a place of waiting. Canal crossings organized by smugglers are usually the last option for many.The first chapter of this thesis deals with the countries of origin and the journey via refugee routes to Europe. In the following, chapter two and chapter three take a closer look at the regional classification and the city of Calais and the dealing with refugees in the recent years.
The last chapter deals with current incidents, problems and controversies of the local situation. By zooming in the urban spaces it outlines the consequences of the failure of authorities and the European Union.
Student work by: Anja Jaekel
Coachings by: Prof. Matthias Karch, Prof. Dan Schürch & Team IMD _Justus Max Hoven, Dr. Philipp Reinfeld, Nicolai Schlapps
Co-examiner: Prof. Dan Schürch
Examiner: Prof. Matthias Karch