affordable housing II: more on dormitories

Yesterday I was talking with a tourist destination designer from the Tourism Division of OCT. He explained that each themepark hires approximately 1,000 workers who are housed in dedicated buildings in OCT holdings. From the mid-eighties through the mid 90s, these apartments were allocated to single workers in OCT management. However, as they moved into larger apartments, which they bought through housing reform policies, the use of the dormitories changed. As did living densities.

When built, the dorms served single workers, providing privacy and a sence of propriety over the space; each worker could create a personal environment. In contrast, as dormitories for 2-4 themepark workers, the rooms have been effectively sub-divided and de-personalized. Themepark workers also have different roommates over the course of their employment. Workers are assigned to dorm rooms, removing another level of control over one’s living space (think freshman year).

However, as others have mentioned in today’s housing climate, the option to live in a. dormitory (even with a rent of 400 rmb) does stabilize employee turnover. Moreover, workers are able to save money because they eat in subsidized cafeterias. Within the OCT near the dormitories, there are off-the-track cheap eateries and public spaces where a bowl of Xinjiang noodles can be had for as little as 12 RMB–not just urban village prices, but more specially, prices competitive with those in neighboring Baishizhou.

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