Beiyuan Urban Design

Location:  Beiyuan District, Nanjing, China

Program: Urban Planning

Status: Design Complete

Tumu Studio collaborated with U+ Design Partners to develop this urban design for the Beiyuan District in Nanjing China.  The Beiyuan District sits just north of Nanjing’s central business district, nestled between the Laoshan and Longwang mountains.  The existing zoning called for a mix of high-tech incubator with offices, retail, and apartments. One issue that our team quickly identified was that the surrounding area had lot of residential housing but no real destination for the local community to gather.  This was resulting in most residents traveling out to other parts of the city for work, dining, and entertainment.  Our team proposed a development that would serve as a focal point for the community.

The long site is situated between two streets of vastly different characteristics. The eastern side features a fast-moving state highway, whereas the west faces an old industrial neighborhood that has more narrow streets with less traffic. The design concept for the building’s massing within the district is to create a juxtaposition that reflects the varied character of the two sides. The fast-paced eastern side features more uniform, flush facades to create an impressive unified front. On the west side of the site, outdoor patios and building setbacks cascade down to street level and break up the building masses. This lowers the volume of the large buildings to a more human scale and creates outdoor space for residents and workers that affords beautiful views to the mountains.

A linear park creates a buffer zone on either side of the highway and activates retail at grade.  Each site within the district is envisioned to have a retail podium with green space at grade and above.  A generous landscaped bridge connects the development with a large residential area to the east.

We used green space to create a more people-friendly pedestrian experience. Larger public spaces welcome occupants at the main entry points within the plan.  Pocket parks provide breaks in the massing of the buildings and create public and private amenities throughout the district.