China - Wuhan’s East Lake covers 33 square kilometres of water, making it the largest lake within an urban context in China. Together with the adjoining green areas, it covers 88 square kilometres. It is an important tourist zone in China, attracting over a million people yearly. The attraction of the large lake is increased by sites like the Botanical Garden, the Ma Anshan Forest Park, the Moshan Hill Scenic Spot and the Luoyan Scenic Area.
In the near future, the roads that cross the lake (dikes) will be transformed into bicycle routes. This is sure to make the area even more attractive for recreational use. On one specific spot, where three bicycle routes come together, lies a small peninsula (approx. 5,000m2). This peninsula faces Moshan Hill Scenic Spot. The peninsula offers beautiful views overlooking the temple and tower on the green hills. The fact that East Lake is encapsulated in the urban fabric makes it a point of strong contrasts. Sometimes, the city is clearly present and other times, it is like being in the middle of nature. These contrasts are an important quality. On the west side, the picture one gets is that of a green waterfront (Tingtao Scenic Area) with in the background the impressive skyline of the high-rise buildings of the city. The views to the south side are dominated by green hills with only some historical, iconic buildings. Views to the north and east are probably less iconic and mostly dominated by greenery, with some local vistas of more rural developments.
We think that, besides a place to enjoy the beautiful views on Moshan Hill, the peninsula should also be a place to escape from daily life in the city. A place for contemplation and meditation. A place where people can clear their mind and experience nature. However, the peninsula should be attractive enough to make it worth stopping there; we also think that its appearance should be quite modest. It should not disturb the experience of the visitors of the natural environment. Another theme that we want to use is ‘contrast’. Contrast between in and out, motion and stagnation, small and large, quiet and busy, formal and informal, cultural and natural, sheltered and open, et cetera.
|Client||Landscape Institute of Wuhan|
|Team||John Boon, Timo Cents, Kees Neven, Joep van Baast, Hans Smolenaers|