KCAP Architects&Planners has won the international competition to design a masterplan for Keqiao Water City in Shaoxing, China. The 45 ha site, which is currently occupied by redundant textile industry and residences, will be redeveloped for residential use with community functions and sport and commercial facilities in a landscaped setting of waterland, parks and gardens. KCAP's masterplan design has been chosen as winner out of 3 international entries.
Keqiao is the major development area of Zhejiang province, occupying a strategic location between Shaoxing, a city of 3 million inhabitants, and Hangzhou, close to Xaoshan airport and along the highway to larger local cities and further to Shanghai. With its unique landscape of lakes, canals and rocks it forms a setting of scenic beauty. The area will become a recreational center and will give new development impulses for the entire region.
KCAP's masterplan introduces a landscape framework formed by different conditions found on the site such as the two lakes with their waterfronts, the canal and road system, the green spaces and the bridges. Enriched with carefully designed elements like public squares, parks, roads and paths a continuous landscape fabric is established which ties the entire development together.
Two centers and different residential quarters, offering maximum views to the lakes and landscape features, are embedded in this fabric. One of the centres is formed by the entire waterfront with public activities, hotel, commercial functions and an alternative residential program; a local centre is formed in the Western part of the site, offering residential and community uses in a more local atmosphere compared to the grandeur of the waterfront development.
'Our masterplan creates high urban quality in a completely new city district of Shaoxing. We are happy to be part of the team to contribute to the development of urban quality in this region,' says Ruurd Gietema, urban planner and partner of KCAP. 'KCAP is looking forward to not only elaborating the masterplan to more detail but also having the opportunity to design the first benchmark projects,' continues Irma van Oort, architect and partner of KCAP.
KCAP will elaborate the winning masterplan scheme throughout 2010 in close cooperation with Shaoxing developer Gemdale and the local authorities. The first projects are estimated to start construction in 2011. 'Working on this project is a great opportunity for us. It is an important stepping stone for our growing portfolio in China,' says Markus Appenzeller, director of international projects of KCAP.