Building Blue and Green Spaces

Landscape / Mar - Apr 2016

Building Blue and Green Spaces

March 22, 2016

An increasing number of cities in Asia are engaging in efforts to develop and integrate water networks and Green infrastructure as urban planning strategies that also provide for public spaces. This can be achieved through the protection of natural habitats within urban landscapes, while providing adaptive measures that are responsive to the climate. As such, design strategies used to develop Green and blue spaces can help generate environmental, socio-cultural and economic benefits for the surrounding areas and the community. Here are three projects that illustrate how these concepts have been implemented.



Yanweizhou is a natural riparian wetland located where the Wuyi River and the Yiwu River converge to form the Jinhua River in the urban heart of Jinhua, a city with a population of over 1 million. Before the Yanweizhou Park project was implemented, the three rivers, each of which is over 100 metres wide, divided the densely populated communities in the region. As a result of this inaccessibility, cultural facilities, including an opera house, and the green spaces adjacent to Yanweizhou were underutilised. The remaining 50-acre (20-hectare) riparian wetland was fragmented or destroyed by sand quarries.



Adaptive design strategies were employed to resolve problems posed by site conditions and to achieve a resilient landscape. The river currents, the flow of people, and the gravity of objects are all woven together to form a dynamic concord. This is achieved through the meandering vegetated terraces, curvilinear paths, a serpentine bridge, circular bioswales and planting beds, and curved benches.



Situated in the northeast part of Jinfeng District in Yinchuan city, the Aiyi River Waterfront Park is adjacent to the new area of the city. The previous waterfront was poorly planned and failed to solve any environmental problems. It was treated simply as a support facility with no diverse or special experience offered.



As a solution, the proposed design concept focused on three objectives: integrating the city’s local features and character into the design; putting an emphasis 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 green mountains and clear rivers.



The intrinsic human act of placemaking was the basic principle behind the design conceptualisation of The Arc, located in Bandar Rimbayu, Selangor, Malaysia. It is a public space that not only serves basic communal functions and provides shelter for collective social activities, but also establishes an identity for the community and township. Simultaneously, it responds to the environment, particularly in addressing the sunlight, heat, humidity and rain of the tropical climate.


Rainwater collection canal and recycling vessel for irrigation

Each end of the concrete arc-shaped structure is lowered to provide pedestrian access via ramps leading to the green roof deck, which serves as an upper-level pedestrian network of garden paths connecting the whole collection of buildings at two separate levels. Vertical landscaped walls also form part of the building façades.


Project Name Yanweizhou Park blank
Location Jinhua City, Zhejiang Province, China
Completion Date May 2014
Site Area 26 hectares
Client/Owner Jinhua Municipal Government
Architecture Firm Turenscape
Design Team Kongjian Yu (design principal); Hongqian Yu; Yu Song; Yuan Fang; Shuiming Zhou; Hui Tong; ShengHui Li; Chujie Lin; Dengfeng Chen
Main Contractors Jinhua Garden and Landscape Constcution co. Ltd.
Contractor Zhengjiang Longsheng Construction Co. Ltd
Electrical Engineer Shanghai Shenguan Construction Co. Ltd
Civil &Structural Engineer ShenZhen Xilun Civil Engineering
Images/Photos Kongjian Yu; Turensscpe

Project Name Waterfront Park of Aiyi River, Yichuan blank
Location Yichuan, China
Completion Date 2014
Site Area 192,000 square meters
Gross Floor Area 212,000 square meters
Client/Owner Yichuan Water Affairs Burreau
Architecture Firm BLVD International
Principle Architects Yuun DU; Kesheng Liu
Images/Photos Fang Jian; BLVD International

Project Name The Arc at Bandar Rimbayu blank
Location Bandar Rimbayu, Malaysia
Completion Date 2014
Site Area 10.7 acres
Gross Floor Area 12,000 square meters
Client/Owner Bandar Rimbayu Sdn Bhd; IJM Land Berhad
Architecture Firm Garis Architects Sdn Bhd
Principle Architects tang Hsiao Seak; Ngu Bgle Woon
Landscape Architects Pentago
Main Constructor Jentrikon Perunding Sdn Bhd
Images/Photos Steven Ngu; Andy Lim; Garis Architects Sdn Bhd

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