LOLA Landscape Architects, TALLER and L+CC won the international competition for a 600 hectare forest and sports park in Guang Ming, Shenzhen, China. The forest and sports park is to become a destination for the Big Bay area. As this metropolitan region finds its success in innovative industries, the park focuses on innovation in sports and ecology. The Guang Ming Town Forest and Sports Park is part of the world’s most innovative Delta.
The Pearl River Delta has its origins in dynamic nature, with a stunning biodiversity. The rapid urbanization required a strong policy on nature preservation. The Shenzhen green network is a good example of this. However, protection is not enough. We need to reinvent the relationship between city and nature.
Guang Ming Town is a showcase of various new ways in which city and nature can build a fruitful relationship. The Forest and Sports Park is an important link in the green network of the city. In this park, both forest and sports life will show itself in its most dynamic and innovative way. The park will keep on developing over time, continuously enriching both biodiversity and possibilities for active leisure and sports. With Shenzhen being the cradle of new ideas and technologies, Forest and Sports Park will be the cradle of new nature and new sports.
The base of the Forest and Sports Park is defined by a network of paths and trails. Around the lake a loop is laid out for all velocities, connecting all main programs. An electric bus stops at all important destinations, facilitating access for all user groups. The loop is the starting point of a network of paths and trails. An elevated path links the forest park to the central city park and the rest of the mountain forest. A scenic route, that goes through different atmospheres and passes by multiple points of interest. It also functions like a pedestrian highway, with rhythmic exits and no steep slopes.
In a natural forest setting, visitors are able to get to know new and forgotten sports, as well as the latest techniques used in sports. A range from open valleys to lower hills and mountain forest offers the natural background for these sports and active leisure. The Red Path forms a landmark that connects the park to the city and the forest; a scenic route that passes by all different types of forest. In the park a series of pavilions hosts functions like a restaurant, restroom, viewing platform and forest cabin. In order to minimize the environmental impact, the pavilions are modular and prefabricated. By placing them on stilts they avoid direct contact with the ground and at the same time provide shadow so that visitors can escape the summer heat. The construction of the park contains two phases.
The first phase opened in 2020, including the red path, entrance plaza, forest area and a temporary loop at Bihu area. It has been a success since the first day people are able to use the park and its facilities. The second phase will be built later, including five innovative sports multifields, a nursery loop, a botanical R&D center and a sports R&D center.
(Credits all photos/images: LOLA-TALLER-L+CC, photo 07: Isaac Cohen, photo 09: Linkai)
Other landscape architecture offices involved in the design of landscape: Land and Civilization Compositions
Architecture offices involved in the design: TALLER architects
Project location: Chalin Road, Guangming District, Shenzhen (China)
Design year: 2018
Year Built: 2019-2020