Introduction: adaptLAB

adaptLAB launched in 2010 as a design research initiative within the Graduate School of Architecture at Konkuk University. The work of adaptLAB is interested in pursuing collaboratively realized projects with input from local communities, artists, and design professionals in order to realize site specific adaptations within the complex urban environment of Seoul. The work of adaptLAB is positioned to promote the enhancement of marginalized urban spaces, as well as places of everyday functional and livable importance to local inhabitants. adaptLAB operates within the idea that current projects can be a mechanism of preservation; as each project stands to bring awareness to place, establish a base of research and design ideas documentation, and foster community value and input in the design of urban places.

Research and speculative design projects are currently underway in Mullae-dong of Seoul's Yeongdongpo industrial district. Design propositions are being made by revolving members of adaptLAB in a collaborative effort with project space LAB39 of the Mullae-dong artist collective. adaptLAB will continue to identify sites throughout Seoul in order to weave public design initiatives with local community interest and necessity. Recently, adaptLAB organized a design ideas exhibition for housing North Korean refugees in Seoul's [Seongsu-dong light industrial neighborhood] and as well will continue to investigate other rapidly transforming industrial city districts as viable grounds for adaptational necessity.