Situated in Northeast part of Jinfeng District in Yinchuan City, the Aiyi River Waterfront Park is adjacent to the new area of the city. The PARK starts from Tanglai Canal in the North and reaches Helanshan Road in the South, bordering Haibao Park to the East and Waterfront Avenue to the West. As a result, it became a major cultural, landscape and traffic hub in this area, a marvelous window presenting a charming city.
The distressing fact is that the existing waterfront is poorly-made and, not only divides the water from the city, but also fails to solve the environmental problems of the city. Additionally, there is no diversified specialty or activity experience offered in the waterfront landscape. The current area exists as an eye-sore. It began as a single minded approach with no positioning strategy for the waterfront. It was not well-planned at all as it is treated simply as supportive facility which fails to enhance the city’s influence and image.
As a solution, the BLVD design concept focused on three objectives: integrating the city’s local features and characters into the design, emphasizing on ecology and a GREEN approach by stressing low carbon consumption, and providing and caring for human needs. The concept aims to produce a wonderland like experience by featuring breathtaking green mountains and clear rivers.
The distance between the city and the riverfront is considerable, challenging the designers to devise a way to close this gap. Designing pedestrian walkways in a serpentine, wave like pattern brings the city and the waterfront closer together at regular intervals. It also alludes to the fluid motion of the river and enhances the water experience as well as creating a more organic and natural experience by breaking the rigid landscape line. A vivid eco waterfront image is produced by creating a variety of spatial sequences overlooking the river.
The pressing issue is how to blend the city into nature by making good use of natural resources, thus creating a space in which people and nature coexist harmoniously. The once popular conception that park design was just something about simple decoration was abandoned at the beginning; instead, a new landscape design method is adopted here – building up an eco infrastructure and landscape structure to satisfy the needs of city and nature as well as to realize the harmonious relationship between people and nature.
In the design, the existing natural matrix attains full respect. The flow line follows the continuity of natural landscape and stress on the utilization of natural landscape. The details design, guided by the concept of green and eco friendly, artfully attach the landscape structures such as materials, lighting, urban furniture etc. to nature in a simple, comfort and modern way to reveal an eco and natural atmosphere – a scientific way we attempt to use to solve the needs and conflicts between nature and human, thus establishing a new sustainable landscape structure.
While enhancing the site quality, artistic landscape experience space helps enliven the urban experience atmosphere. Low intervention in the natural matrix is adopted by artfully arranging a set of artistic landscape experience system, aiming to offer easy access to the pleasure of nature. Therefore, a modern landscape system featuring eco sustainability and artistic visual effect is achieved.
Artistic elevated walkways and view decking, strong structures, irregular terrace, clusters of gently waving reed and undulating ripple around… all natural elements form a fantastic ever-changing sequence. The integration of resources realizes an artistic enjoyment. The design, which is expected to create an ideal state of people centeredness, harmonious coexistence between human and nature, resonance of mind and environment, mental pleasure out of landscape, pursues to guide the city of its healthy and vibrant development and contribute to the enhancement and spread of the quality of the city.
Yinchuan, a city located in the hinderland of Northwestern China but with splendid landscapes, which wins itself the fame of Abundant Place outside the Great Wall. It is right on this piece of land that such rich historical and cultural heritage as Xixia civilization were bred.
This area is designed to present the local culture by creating an historical and cultural promenade. Visitors can easily feel the profound culture of Yinchuan from ancient time to present days while strolling among different spaces.
While achieving a concise and modern landscape, the purpose of the design is to also reflect the honest and tough ethnic flavor of Yinchuan people and the spirit of the site. The combination of all the design elements, including theme sculptures, signage, lighting, and simple pleasant urban furniture, visually tell a dramatic story of the area.
The planting principle is to maintain its local characteristics by keeping local reed/cattail, willow, rose willow and other plants. Non local plants such as Cedar and other evergreen plants will not be planted any more in order to recover the indigenous reed/cattail and form a relatively sound eco base. A pleasing and ecological plantscape is achieved with herbaceous plants and local arbor which embellish this thick vegetation base, generating a space for infinite contemplation.
Inspired by the characteristics of the legendary phoenix bird, designers used reed/Cattail, and rose willow as the setting, and ornamental grass like lythrum salicaria, and other herbaceous flowers as the main elements to form the meadow landscape with lush wild flowers. This sculpted landscape is not just the re-occurrence of nature or an artistic refinement; it offers something that can bring you enjoyment, comfort and tranquility.
Entrant office name: BLVD International
Role of the entrant in the project: Landscape design company
Other design firms involved:
Project location: Ningxia, China
Design Area: 192000㎡
Design year: 2012
Year Built: 2014
Designers: Yun Du \Kesheng Liu \ Ning Wang