Duriban 51+ Festival

Resurrection City: The Scale of Seoul's Urban Renewal Process

Duriban 51+ Festival

Located above Hongik University Station on the edge of the liveliest part of South Korea, Duriban was an ordinary restaurant until hired goons evicted everyone inside on Christmas Eve 2009. The next day, the owner and her husband returned and began a 531-day sit-in protest. They received much support from local arts communities, which were also feeling pressure from gentrification. Months after the sit-in began, musicians held the first-ever 51+ Festival, inviting  more than fifty-one bands to perform in and around Duriban. Duriban is the three-story building shown with a green roof and a banner on its side. The excavation along the upper edge of this image was for the Gyeongui and AREX train lines. After the new train lines opened in 2010, the land aboveground sat empty for years. Much of the length of the train lines was converted into Gyeongui Line Forest Park, but in 2017, construction started on a new department store situated over the tracks. The Duriban protest concluded peacefully, with the owners winning a relocation package that allowed them to reopen in another location in the same neighborhood.  

2010