Night Market Unfolding

Personal Info

Name: Ekin Bilal

Nationality: Turkey

Institution / Company: Cornell University

Instagram: @ekinbilal


-HONOURABLE MENTION of Non Architecture Award Competition | Category: Urban


Now a part of the vernacular of Taipei, steel cages added to the windows, balconies, and roofs of buildings increase apartment sqm to respond to hyper-condensed living conditions in a city with exponentially growing real-estate prices. Arguing that these  cages  are ‘eye-sores’ and illegal,  the Taiwanese government is dismantling these additions without addressing the underlying socio-economic issues.

Though technically also illegal, the vernacular night markets in Taipei are one of the biggest attractions of the city. They generate a substantial amount of revenue, and in return are ‘overlooked’ by the government. Even when a stall owner is fined, all stall owners at the market share the amount amongst themselves. Drawing inspiration from collective solidarity of the night market, this project proposes to turn the cages on apartment facades into a vertical night market-scape, making use of the material and scalar similarities of both typologies.

This new market will generate finances to restore the structure of the Sanzhi Fucheng Temple, a disused temple in Da’an–a reference to  how Taiwanese night markets historically started in temple plazas.

At night, the cages will unfold to connect the staircases and balconies light up as night market stalls. They not only provide a new method of generating income and connectivity for the residents, they also challenge the government’s existing perception of the balcony additions as ‘eye-sores,’, giving them a chance at beauty.


Project Type: Adaptive Domestic-Commercial

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