Evolution of tube house after Doi Moi

After official launching of Doi Moi in 1986, Hanoi urban structure did not only change in the size of the city as shown in the master plan, but also experience vigorous transformation in old neighborhood. In old district, the traditional Nha Ong (tube house) show evolution on their form.

The ‘tube houses’  have a narrow frontage and are very deep; the large villas of the French Quarter, which had been subdivided and reallocated to multiple families. Floor level were often used as shops.

Doi Moi gave people in Hanoi the right to own a housing property. The right to own a house become the main facilitator to push the development of Hanoi’s housing market. In the following several years, private housing start to appear and replaced government-built public housing, becoming the main cast of in Hanoi. Residents with wealth start to build their own house.  Tube house show huge transformation on their size and programme arrangement.

Shop housing is common in Hanoi. Family business was placed on ground floor facing the street while the families live in the upper floor.  Old two stores housing were usually inhabiting several family.  While in this type of housing more often only one family is living. They were not simply built as housing to satisfy the enhanced living standard but also an expression of wealth. What has remained from the past is their super narrowed foot print and the mode of shops under home.

Hanoi old city light traffic during Tet holiday

Old shop house in Hanoi


Typical Nha Ong in Hanoi

Archiv 57/58 Constructing the future, remembering the Past house in southeast Asia ( 2000)  Gabriele Weichart

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