Water For People

Date: June 2016

Status: Competition

Area: 8 mile (Coastline)

Location: Yangzhou, China

Role: Team Leader & Designer

Our concept is simply about using our imagination to re-establish the relationship between water and people. People here are so close (physically) to the river, yet so far away at the same time (psychologically). The Mangdao river travels east joining the Yangtze river and reaches Shanghai and East China Sea. We want this site to become a 'CLEANSING POINT'. Like acupuncture, we insert 'PINS' to the Mangdao river at points where water hits the bank most: Fixed platforms, floating platforms with reed bed and sea bins. These 'PINS' help clean the water and people at the same time (Mind & Body) - acting as spaces where they exercise , play, learn and relax. We wish our design to adapt to water, not the other way round!


At oil tank section, we converted the existing tanks into water filled exercise spaces with a pump bringing water in from the river. Inside the tank, the ground floats on water, and its spatial quality varies in response to the water level. Secondly, we brought people closer to the river by blurring the boundary between the two. The round platforms (some fixed, some loose) cover the riverbank and extends below onto the river. The tanks become exercise spaces, and the new round platforms are outdoor public spaces. The tanks can also act as water storage and relieve flood, and is part of the local heritage telling stories of the old harbour. At low water level, outdoor fixed platforms are higher from water. Internal spaces are grand and have high headroom. At high water level, outdoor fixed platforms are close to water. Some floatable platforms rise with the water. Internal spaces become more compact and intimate. Yoga and basketball on floating platforms are extra fun! The vibrant colours of the tanks add a bit of playfulness and fun, and the extended fields can be used for camping and games.


At water village section, we retained area of high ecological value like the wetlands. In other area, we dug trenches along the coastline to let water flow inland. This slows down the water current, lower the water level when flooding occurs, and clean the water as it flows through reed beds and floating sea bins. The round pavilions are for public use. Through time and tide, the space and scenery changes, and people interacts with water in many interesting ways! Our design not only adapts to water, but also teaches people to do the same. It encourages people to explore, learn and respect water (and nature), not fear it! They are moments to remember and value.

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