Renewal for historical iron factory- Wuhan 1890 Park

The site of Wuhan 1890 Park is located in Historical Iron Factory area in Hanyang District, Wuhan City, China. This area connects all central parts in Wuhan City. Hanyang Iron Factory was built in 1890, it was the first and largest iron and steel complex in China at that time. Since then, China’s iron and steel industry has stumbled. In 2018, Hanyang Iron Factory was selected into the first batch of China’s industrial heritage protection list. And the park named Wuhan 1890 Park.

As the design we started, the site of the heritage park was in a ruinous state. We hope after the restoration and redesign, the site can connect the city’s cultural context, the factory space that had lost its vitality was reborn.

There are two heritage buildings in the site. The overall space is messy and dilapidated, but the landscape vegetation is lush. How to preserve the sense of history of the site is a challenge during construction. The planting design should preserve the existing species on the site that tells the evolutionary history of the iron factory, including ten-meter high cedars, poplars, and plane trees. A lot of industrial parts remained can be reused and transformed to a part of landscape.

In addition to the protection and restoration of heritage buildings, as demanded by the usual historical preservation project, the detail of spatial design also demand an interweaving of different layouts in response to the programming of each area.

We hope that the front court can fully display the buildings with an open and transparent space. The exquisite and concise urban critical surface completely opens up the whole space, forming a scene with great visual impact, which is an experience that gives people the most intuitive connection with history.

The core scene revolves around the layout of the building, so a very restrained approach to unify the function and aesthetics of the landscape space created, and the historical memory resonates with the space during the browsing process, enriching the courtyard-style natural experience. It allows all common activities such as passing, resting, browsing, and viewing happen freely.

The landscape redesign with various industrial abandoned parts, which composed as sculpture art of this park. The art installation named “The Ring of Time and Space”,which is made of 107 abandoned metal parts.

The development of urbanization is getting faster and faster, and the pace of urban renewal never stops. The landscape of the old city block has been a part of the childhood memory of many Wuhan local people. Hanyang Iron Factory records the changes of industrial civilization, and also represents the renewal of the entire urbanization. On November 1st,2021, the 12-day 6th Wuhan Design Biennale will open at the 1890 Park, as the main venue of this biennale, the iron factory itself is an architectural space that combines a sense of history with art elements.

Photography:  Xiao Wang

Project location (For publicly accessible projects please include exact address. For Private gardens place write Country or State):

Hanyang District, Wuhan District, Hubei Province, China

Design year: 2019

Year Built: 2020

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