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Infra-Green: Shanghai Minsheng Wharf Waterfront Landscape and Connecting Infrastructure

Since the concept planning design of the Minsheng Art Port in 2016, the Urban Space Art Season and the Pudong Waterfront Reconnection in 2017, the overall greening and lighting improvement of the Minsheng Terminal in 2018 and the ongoing renovation of the Minsheng Ferry Station till 2019, this is more than a public and historical waterfront, but a self-contained and vibrant landscape infrastructure. After nearly two years of landscape renovation and reconnection engeerings, the project has become the latest urban waterfront landmark of Shanghai.

As a major strategy of Shanghai, the comprehensive development plan on both sides of the Huangpu River is a grand vision that carries history and faces the future. Through the specific description of this vision, under the condition of satisfying the three-line connection, linking up the neighborhood, social activities, and ecological environment, the renovation of Minsheng Wharf provides the first important urban leisure waterfront open space node in the direction of east bank of the Huangpu River from the west of Yangpu Bridge to Lujiazui.

 

The east side of Minsheng Wharf’s waterfront space starts from Yangjing Bridge, and the west side runs through Minsheng Ferry Station. The design is based on the theme of “art + daily + event” and adopts the strategy of “old bone new shell, old base new frame, old and new life”. From the east to the west, the planning is an overlay of multi-function spaces, such as the green slope with trees, the waterfront promenade, the central square and the overhead passage, so that the overall organization of circulation will adapt to space requirements of daily or celebrating activities.

Based on the integrity and continuity of urban space, the promenade is at a low elevation of 5.2 meters; the midline jogging track is above the flood wall at the elevation of 7 meters; and the overhead highline cycling trail gradually climbs up to the highest point of 11 meters. The overall design of the “three-line connection” creates multiple paths of travel, various spaces for a stop and rich leisure experiences.

Industrial waterfront has its own strong visual appeal, which does not need too much decoration or over-design. However, the original flood-control wall inevitably blocked the street from the waterfront and separated urban spaces. Our design starts from the section, combined with detailed analysis and study of the topography and infrastructure, re-grading the site with different ways such as green slopes, trails, steps, and squares. The old and new are combined to realize the continuity of spaces, landscapes and circulations, which will greatly improve the experience of people entering the waterfront space.

The eastern section of the site starts from two approaches from the Yangjing Bridge. On the side of the land is a cycling trail with a slope of 4%, parallel to the shoreline and straight into the slope over the elevation of flood wall. On the side of the water is a 12- meter- diameter semi-helical stair, for people walking on the bridge to slowly get down to the dock, with a circular view of nearly 270 degrees in the process of travel, overlooking both sides of the Pujiang River and admiring the magnificent views of Lujiazui.

Inspired by the form of silo, modular metal tree planters contain the trees of Michelia alba, Bischofia polycarpa, Cinnamomum camphora, Sapium sebiferum and various kinds of herbal flowers, allowing the public to walk through the forest. Rich and vibrant layers of sceneries are formed by rise and fall of terrain, intertwined trees, crowds enjoying the river wind, seats paved with terrazzo and screen railings in the sunset, ships on the Huangpu River and the city skyline on the opposite.

Minsheng Art Square is located at the center of Minsheng Wharf. It is designed to the elevation of flood wall to form an open waterfront space for various events. It provides a space for people to gather, reside and photograph the east bank of the Huangpu River to the Lujiazui financial district and a brand-new vision to enjoy the city skyline on both sides of the Pujiang River. It has become the best venue for people to relax, walk, and perform other impromptu activities since the opening. The dock can be reached through several slopes across large steps on the square and small green platforms joint with each other. The bollards remain in the original position along the river, the terrazzo wall, and the light form a historical cultural landscape.

In the western section of the quayside landscape, our design preserves the transportation track of the original tower crane through the integration of pavement, but the position of the designed tower crane is adjusted. While retaining its historical significance, we also granted it a logo for landscape connection, guided the new value and reserve the space for future development and transformation.

The tree planters and setting of the seat on the dock continues the space of tree array in the east section, providing a place for people to stay and rest. The land area with microtopography growing green plants and trails for people to walk through.

Cycling and running through the road from the Minsheng Art Square to the transfer station connected to the Minsheng Ferry Station area, we will climb from the 7-meter elevation of flood wall to the 11-meter elevation of the square on top of the ferry station. The original concrete structure on site and new-built steel structure passage are mutually integrated and supported by each other, which are connect to the ground surface of the western section by two extremely dramatic spiral ramps. Satisfying the needs of evacuating circulation of both people and vehicles, it also provides a view of the promenade to the bottom of the connecting overpass. Through the reinforcement of the original structure and new glass top, the original industrial transportation logistic track is transformed into the human circulation in the urban landscape. The corridor bridge in front of the 258 warehouse joins with a large ramp in the existing span to connect the transfer station and the one in front of the 257 warehouse. Through the maximum preservation of the original structure of the transfer station and the texture of the surface layer, the way of coating mustard yellow paint gives the original space a brand-new walking experience without much effort. Walking on the overhead passage for about 400 meters in total, the scenery of Pujiang River is displayed like a scroll painting. This is a transformation process that integrates contemporary cities and post-industrial landscapes, a landscape infrastructure that activates waterfront breakpoints and enhances recreational experience and also the most unique strategy of space-building in urban construction.

Huihong Bridge located in Yangjing Harbor near Yangpu Bridge is the first slow traffic bridge in East Bund of Pudong area. It’s a special-shaped steel–structure truss bridge, with 10.75-meter wide main bridge and 55-meter span. The design combines structure, function and form together, utilizing the height difference to diverge cycling, jogging and walking. The light graceful shape looks like the comet streaking across the sky, which symbolizes the new atmosphere in East Bund. The Chinese character ‘Hong’ means the vast and deep water, while ‘Hui’ refer to the comet. The ‘Huihong Bridge’ crossing Yangjing Harbor towards to Lujiazui with bow-type structure is a good metaphor for the developing ambition as the first bridge in East Bund.

Location: Pudong District, Shanghai
Type: Landscape & Infrastructure
Site Area: 27191.5sqm
Design Stage: 2016.10 – 2017.07
Construction Stage: 2017-2018

Landscape Design: Atelier Liu Yuyang Architects
Design Principal: Liu Yuyang
Project Leader: Wang Jue
Project Architect/Architect on site: Wu Yaping, Chen Zhuoran
Design Team: Chenhan, Yu Yiren, Chen Weiyi, Lincan, He Yining, He Yuqing, Zuoyao
Client: Shanghai East Bund Investment (Group) Co., Ltd

Structure Consultant: Structure AND Architecture OFFICE
Lighting Consultant: Unolai Lighting Design & Associates
Hydraulic Engineering & Structure: Shanghai Hydraulic Engineering Group Co.,Ltd
Contractor: Shanghai Hydraulic Engineering Group Co.,Ltd, Shanghai Gardening-Landscaping Construction Co. Ltd
Main Landscape Material: Water Permeable Ceramic Brick,Dressed Stone, Terrazzo,Polyurethane Modified Epoxy Resin, Granite, Fluorocarbon Coated Steel Plate, Stainless Steel Wire Mesh, Silk-screen Printed Glass
Cost: 150,000,000 RMB
Photography: Tian Fangfang

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