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Given that a physical environment is a manifestation of its socio-cultural context, this paper seeks to examine the development of the Hua Takhe settlement, the physical components of the community, the socio-spatial interconnection, and the spatial essences of the waterfront shophouses in relation to the ownership patterns. Based on field surveys, oral histories, and observations, the research employs Hall’s theory of space to extricate the anthropological aspects of the case studies. It is noted that different types of ownership, i.e. inherited and long-term rental, affect the physical and spatial transformations as well as the social proxemics of the shophouses. This paper concludes the intimate space, the intermediary space, the spaces in space, the dialogical space, and the communal space as the key components of the waterfront dwellings in the new context.
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