Zuoying Old Fortress

Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Urbanism, Mobility

Status: Design
Project Design: 2015 - 2016
Client: Kaohsiung city government, Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Programme: Total 52.19 ha, including an open-air museum, archeology excavation, interactive exhibition, restaurants, open-air market.

Kaohsiung City commissioned Mecanoo as a masterplan consultant to review the urban vision for West Kaohsiung, where the railway track used to be. “The Underground Railway Project” is a great opportunity for Kaohsiung to update the existing urban fabric with a new public transportation system that will enhance the cityscape and improve people’s lives.

Guided by the four major themes of “diversified ecological environment”, “healthy leisure activities”, “clean mobility”, and “robust hydrological system”, Mecanoo identifies the specific characteristics of each area for a context integrated solution. The project scope goes beyond design concept and development strategy.

Working closely with the Kaohsiung City Government, Mecanoo has translated the results into feasible urban design guidelines which will be used as basis for municipal development. Dating from 1772, The Old City of Fongshan County, Zuoying District, is located in the centre of southern Taiwan, near Zuoying Railway Station.

The fortified city was the first county in Kaohsiung and stands as the oldest preserved city in southern Taiwan. Due to its location next to the High-Speed Rail, the historical city has a high potential for development. Mecanoo has designed a new high-density district, outside the city walls, on the site of a former military control zone. The development will recreate the old urban boundaries, defining the inner and outer cities, while protecting the old city’s heritage.

The dilapidated fortress of Zuoying will be restored and become a part of the city life as an open-air museum. Here, the visitors can discover remnants of the past and walk on the old paths. A variety of outdoor recreation spaces (mountain trails, parks, ramparts, event square, etc.) offer a wide range of options for pastime activities.

Our proposal integrates the park with the surrounding urban development, improving the life quality of the community. Car traffic will be routed around the historical city to allow for a high level of accessibility for slow traffic and pedestrians.

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