The Taichung Green Corridor in Taiwan serves as an exemplary model for repurposing existing infrastructures to revitalize the urban environment. This project transformed a 1.7-kilometer-long disused railway track that traverses downtown Taichung, the second most populous city in Taiwan. Once a crucial catalyst for the growth of the old city, the railway track has been ingeniously converted into a dynamic linear park, now offering walking and cycling paths.
What is the impact of the project on the surrounding landscape?
Although in the past the rail line functioned as a way of connecting people, the disused railway acts more as a barrier due to its challenging location on the dyke, which impedes circulation from one side of the tracks to the other. The design reuses the rail line to connect the different parts of the city in a sustainable way by creating a green corridor for biodiversity and including bike/pedestrian lanes to better cater for the needs of the community. Within this linear site, the sustainable development covered a wide range of planning and design factors including urban regeneration, public participation, historic preservation, green and water resources, and circulation routes for pedestrians and bikes. Relying on Mecanoo’s extensive urban planning experience, the design shapes a people-oriented green corridor, complementing the Green River’s waterfront.
How does the project impact the local community? Does it involve the participation of the local community in terms of the design and/or construction; or factor in their livelihoods?
The project is located in a unique and complicated location. Many stakeholders are related to the site, such as a state-owned enterprise, a private landowner, the water bureau of the city, the Ministry of Transportation and, of course, residents. The client is aware of the importance of the public’s participation. Therefore, a major part of the design commission was to host public hearings and interviews with residents, which ensured the design proposal was aligned with the majority’s wishes.
What resources and raw materials (wood; bricks, etc.) have been used?
Some of the railway infrastructures (railway track and truss poles) were reused as public furniture. Besides the reusing of building materials, the project’s main intention was to reuse the railway dyke and bring new functions to the dyke without destroying the historical artificial landscape.
Read the full article at Forbes, here.