There are about four neighborhoods I am keeping tabs on at the moment. I want to share more pictures of the places, but I feel like I have only begun my research. I reserve writing about these places in detail until the seats are gone. Here are four quick peeks at the places I have been exploring of late:
Neighborhood #1 (South of the Han River)
I have only visited this neighborhood one day in February. It’s not that huge of a redevelopment zone. I find it hard to justify the time and money spent to travel across the river to visit. Despite this, I still keep my eyes peeled. The neighborhood has many roomy single-family houses. These houses were status symbols for the time. I imagine new, prosperous families of the 80s moved in, raised children, with the recent retiree parents seeing the opportunity for a better neighborhood, sold their land, and got our when the getting was good. This place only needs, at tops, two more visits.
Neighborhood #2 (Western Seoul)
This area was a recent discovery from Instagram. My wife and I have been twice. It’s quite near our apartment. Like Neighborhood #1, it’s a small zone with some spacious upper-middle-class homes mixed with working-class flats. I don’t have any of my film photos developed, but the demo crew has been relatively liberal in their spray painting of empty buildings.
Neighborhood #3 (Northeast Seoul)
A combination of two different neighborhoods, this area continues to be an endless source of discoveries. Each time I go, I find something even more thought-provoking than the last trip. I am holding back on photos for when the whole place is gone. I am on the lookout for a particular style of hanok tile that an acquaintance needs pictures of for a book he is writing.
Neighborhood #4 (Northern Seoul)
I got a four-day weekend coming up, and I hope to get out to this place during my free days. It’s still in the early stages of redevelopment. People have moved out, workers have sculped garbage mountains out of the trash and possession left behind, and buildings marked “공가” and “철거,” indicating they are ready to be razed. There are a few hanoks in this area I want to check out, but I must patiently wait and let the redevelopment process play itself out.It’s Sunday night as I write this, I just got back from a weekend trip down south to Jeollanam-do. I’m still coming down from the good times we had. It was a weekend filled with visitations to old sites, like the Shaman Hoarder’s House and the Japanese Colonial Temple, while also taking in some new abandonment. I took a lot of photos with my new phone camera that I will share with you next blog post. Until then, thanks for reading.