Tandem and Oculus to redesign Tianjin shipyard in China

March 7, 2011

Tandem Design Studio, Oculus and Shanghai-based ANS win international competition to redesign 189-hectare shipyard in Tianjin, China.

Melbourne’s Tandem Design Studio, together with landscape architects Oculus and Shanghai-based ANS, have won the international design competition to redevelop the Xingang Shipyard in Tianjin, China.

The competition invited three teams to redesign the 189-hectare site, which sits adjacent to the new CBD. Teams were asked to include 2,000,000 square metres of new entertainment, cultural, residential and commercial space to revitalise the area as part of a major overhaul of the Chinese city.

The team’s masterplan was selected over proposals submitted by the Halcrow Group from the UK, and Rheinschiene Architects from Germany. Tandem, Oculus and ANS’ scheme received the maximum number of points from the competition’s judging panel – making it the preferred design scheme of each of the judges.

The winning proposal explores the connection between the freshwater Haihe river and the man-made saltwater port. The scheme includes a corridor called The Water’s Edge, which maximises the relationship between land and water. The zigzagging form of the existing docks is retained, but the addition of new cycle and pedestrian routes integrate the industrial dock area with the revitalised commercial zone – offering continuous routes through the site without removing the original form of the port.

The design team describes this corridor as an ever-changing threshold: “The Water’s Edge is not a singular experience or overarching urban gesture – but rather a complex series of inter-related experiences, creating a rich, experiential tapestry for visitors to explore, contemplate and re-visit.”

The scheme also includes a balance of “static spaces and rotating venues, stitched together via green and blue buffers that are themselves places for experiences and events”. Indoor, outdoor and semi-weatherproof venues include a swimming pool and beach, as well as a podium for concerts and fashion parades with an operable floor that can convert the podium into an outdoor skating rink.

Other venues will include a maritime museum, market, theatre, yacht club and shopping centre, which will sit alongside some of the existing shipyard buildings. Landscaping is introduced throughout the site, in the form of linear parks and a recreational park beside the maritime museum.

The city of Tianjin, located near Beijing, is currently undergoing large-scale redevelopment. Concurrent design competitions to redesign the CBD and CFD, as well as a number of other sites, are currently underway.

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