DaoXianghu Ecological Zone Planning  

Beijing, China

Beijing, DaoXianghu District Government

Project Data:
445 hectare ecological showcase development,    
Concept master plan

Project Description:

Located 30 kilometers northwest of central Beijing, the DaoXianghu District contains a beautiful tapestry of natural landscape resources which feature diverse eco-systems, variegated green zones, and wetlands preserves. An ecological showcase development is envisioned for a 445 hectare area, at the confluence of several streams and rivers meandering amongst small wetlands, lakes and ponds. The expressed goal is to create a development master plan which provides cultural, recreational, and ecological amenities amongst a framework for residential and low-scale office developments.

The concept development master plan outlines a strategy which prioritizes and protects the existing natural features by promoting their sensitive integration into the development. They become the key physical features of the site, both for visitors experiencing the natural habitat and for the local residents and commercial tenants. Various circulation routes are developed through the site for pedestrians and vehicles, with the priority given to pedestrian movement systems. The routes traverse amongst the wetlands, through the forests, and alongside and over the rivers and streams. Multiple options for movement are provided, from the all-encompassing to the immediate connection.

Physical buildings are thoughtfully sized and positioned throughout the site, with key cultural facilities carefully sited at important natural settings. A deliberate aim was to limit the overall footprint of buildings and thereby site coverage, which was limited to 30% by planning regulations. By limiting building heights to a maximum of 4-6 floors, with most being typically 2-3 floors tall, the project still provides a total of 1,250,000 sm of building area while maintaining an overall site coverage of only 8%.

Key to the master plan concept is the preservation and enhancement of existing natural resources, features, and ecosystems, and a call to re-evaluate city wide development plans and patterns. To insure an ecologically and environmentally appropriate development vision, economic interests must be balanced with protecting natural ecosystems and habitats, while addressing the environmental concerns generated by new manmade environments.