With the frequency of population migration and moving increasing across the world, more people are living in shared rental places. It’s been reported that 17.2 % of people in China move across cities annually and about 15% of the population moves in the US and Korea annually (UNFPA, Statistics Korea, 2019).

With high residential mobility, connections and social networks are constantly cut off (Wang, 2019). In the long-term, people who move frequently become less committed or tied to their surroundings; they invest less effort on interaction and preservation or their environment behaviors. It has been reported that water and waste pollutions increase with an increasing portion of moving population (Chinese general social study 2013).

The project focus for this thesis is redesigning a kitchen in a shared rental space. As both a functioning and socializing area in a rental, kitchens have a great potential for redesign for roommates. The homogeneity and undifferentiated structure are quite common for most rental kitchens. Such structure often can’t accommodate free choice of boundaries, variations, and connections for strangers living together.

The significance of this project is to facilitate positive behaviors and accommodate the behavior changes and tactics. This is in order to improve experience in shared rental, preserve dynamics and sustain the environment in the long run.

The final solution is a system that’s heterogenous, accommodating both boundaries and connections, with some levels of customizability. It’s comprised of color-coded containers for the refrigerator, in addition to portable kitchen stations with removable and customizable surfaces. The individual stations could be either assigned according to different functionality or residents. People could clean and organize differently without disrupting others, and still make food together when they want to.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Kitchens--Design and construction; Rental housing--Design and construction; Shared housing--Design and construction

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Industrial Design (MFA)

Department, Program, or Center

School of Design (CAD)


Stan Rickel

Advisor/Committee Member

Lorraine Justice


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes