Nanjing Hexi’s 7-Kilometer, 460-Acre Urban Waterfront to Be a Cultural Destination along the Yangtze River with China's First International Fine Arts Museum
HOUSTON — (BUSINESS WIRE) — June 14, 2010 — SWA Group announced today its competition entry for a transformative 7-kilometer swath of Yangtze River waterfront of the Hexi New Town in Nanjing, China, was selected from among the four finalist teams and will begin detailed design in July toward anticipated initial construction in 2011.
“Nanjing is one of China’s most ancient metropolitan centers, and Hexi New Town will accommodate Nanjing’s continued growth as the capital of Jiangsu Province and the largest commercial center in the region, while further attracting global investors and international clients,” said Scott Slaney, Houston-based principal of SWA and lead designer on the project.
Nanjing Hexi will include:
-- a 75-hectare (185 acre) Yangtze EcoPark at the convergence of the Yangtze, Jiajiang and Qinhuaixin Rivers that will include a major mixed-use development with eco-hotel, shopping, housing and office space;
-- a 25-hectare (62.5 acre) Art Park featuring an international art museum from a world-class architect to attract 3 million annual visitors, and would include associated museum lofts.
–- a 5 hectare (12.5 acre) site to include a Yangtze River Anthropology Museum;
-- a 64-hectare (160 acre) Hexi Plaza which will be the cultural epicenter of Hexi Riverfront Park including a performing arts center and other entertainment, retail, residential, office and waterfront uses;
-- a 17-hectare (42.5 acre) Waterworks Park featuring family-entertainment, urban agriculture, tea follies, tourism and educational aspects.
“Nanjing Hexi has the opportunity to become one of the world’s great urban riverfronts by attracting people to it as an amenity of beauty, recreation, culture and commerce,” said Slaney. “The plan also addresses regional and national objectives including natural resource preservation, environmental regeneration, economic vitality and social equity while maintaining flood protection and celebrating the beauty and history of the Yangtze River.”
A former brownfield site, Nanjing Hexi utilizes environmental innovation including manmade wetlands along the waterfront to help cleanse the river, which has high levels of suspended solids and chemicals. To kick-start the growth of wetlands and speed up the water-polishing process, thousands of strips of man-made bio-film will be “planted” along the water’s edge and in small islands.
Nanjing Hexi aims to gain prominence on the global stage with a world-class fine arts museum at the heart of the Art Park in the dramatic bend of the Jiajiang River. This International Museum of Fine Art, China’s first international fine arts museum, is planned to be designed by a globally-recognized architect for housing contemporary pieces from China and also art exhibits from around the world.
Nanjing Hexi will also feature a Museum of Anthropology with exhibits to teach the history of human settlement along the Yangtze; an “eco hotel” with traditional rooms and rooms within the wetland park accessed by boat or from a boardwalk; and expansive waterfront promenades to maintain a human, walkable scale to the development.
SWA Group ( www.swagroup.com), established in 1957, is an international landscape architecture, planning and urban design firm. SWA has offices in Sausalito, CA, Los Angeles, Laguna Beach, CA, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Shanghai and Dubai. Since its inception, SWA Group has worked in over 60 countries, and its projects have garnered more than 600 awards.
Ron Heckmann, 510-652-5800