The joint envisioning process with ecologists, architects, concern groups and residents has produced this blueprint for a self-contained, floating sanitation garden that confronts rising seawater levels while providing the assuring convenience of flush toilets. Currently this initiative seeks open-minded coastal residents to participate in a scientifically guided pilot trial.
Tai O fishing village is located on the eastern end of Lantau Island, separated only by a mountain range from Hong Kong airport.
Built along the forked Tai O River the village was renown for its shrimp paste, oyster industry, salt production and pirate base before its transition into a tourism destination as “Venice of Asia” (population: 1200).
Originally, the inquiry's intention was to explore small-scale, constructed wetland rafts to process excess nutrients from the outfall pipes.
Initially, the study entailed a funding application (pending) for a citizen science project towards monitoring the quality of Tai O's coastal waterways under the title TAI O WATER SCHOOL".
TAI O WATER SCHOOL proposes first a collective dye-tracing protocol where 20 selected unsewered household would simultaneously release a harmless fluorescent color agent into the waterways documented by drone footage.
TAI O WATER SCHOOL would indicate the pollution hot spots in Tai O waterways and implement a community-led remediation program with probiotic soil balls.
To address nutrients pollution preventively, URINE ECONOMIES proposed the agroecological reuse of source-separated urine: yet overcoming the longstanding mistrust among stilt house residents, changing people's toilet routines and establishing the social logistics proved to be a very tall order.
The probes revealed that stilt houses furthest away from the shore tend to be constructed far below drainage pipe levels and exposed to tides flooding, requiring either costly pumping systems or standalone, toilet/treatment boats as explored in these two sketches.
The structure of the floating ecofiltration toilet unit is informed by the water-borne aquaculture platforms of the local Tanka people (蜑家) who use recycled steel drums as pontoons.
The floating toilet with sanitation garden connects with an arched boat ramp to the stilt house by pivoting to the diurnal low and high tide.