In this AR interactive story, participants explore the history of Doyers Street in Chinatown, New York City and the inter-generational struggles of Chinese Americans. Widely considered the “nerve center” of Chinatown in Manhattan, Doyers Street is a site full of rich stories with a history spanning over a century. From gang wars in the early 1900s to Covid-19, Doyers Street and its Chinatown residents have faced numerous challenges throughout the years.
Set in a fictional family restaurant on Doyers Street, the story follows the journey of the restaurant as it strives to survive through the decades. Told through the lens of the current owner of the restaurant in three time periods, 1910, 1975, and 2020, each owner narrates the current issues of the time revealing the inter-generational struggles and experiences that affected many in Chinatown, tying past histories to present issues.
Divided into three parts, participants scan QR codes placed throughout the street to activate each of the three AR experiences. In the experience, participants can read (in English) and listen (in Cantonese) to the main character narrating the specific issues of their time relating to Chinatown, the restaurant business, and Chinese American struggles.