Graduation Thesis Jasper Nijveldt TU Delft


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The Wall is a strategic vision for an alternative urban architectural model that will guide the city towards compact sustainable growth, giving at the same time ‘place’ to the millions of new migrants. A new dense 300 km long and 1 km wide urban zone along the current city border takes on the specifics of the local soil, vegetation and existing land use patterns. From birds-eye perspective the Wall looks therefore rather chaotic, but from eye-level its secret is being unravelled; Space is experienced trough a crossing of various enclosures and different spatial sequences, from the very public all the way to the private bedroom. Space is presented little by little. The next space is always unpredictable which creates a sense of mystery. The wall is a strategic approach that ranges from designing a small water gutter, to a robust and general solution for the entire China.

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Graduation Thesis Jasper Nijveldt TU Delft

  1. 1. the wallThe re-discovery of ordinary public places in analternative urban architectural model for Chinese cities– The case of ChengduJasper NijveldtTU Delft RepositoryFor more information please or would love to hear your tips, ideas or critique!
  2. 2. the wall The re-discovery of ordinary public places in analternative urban architectural model for Chinese cities – The case of Chengdu Jasper Nijveldt
  3. 3. The Wall - StudioleaderThe re-discovery of ordinary public Mitesh Dixitplaces in an alternative urban OMAarchitectural model for Chinese cities– The case of Chengdu Supervisors prof. ir. Henco BekkeringMaster thesis dr. ir. Luisa CalabreseDelft University of Technology prof. ir. Kees KaanFaculty of Architecture ir. Henri van BennekomDepartment of Urbanism03-02-2012 Mentor team prof. ir. Henco BekkeringJasper Nijveldt Professor Chair of Urban Assoc. Prof. Deborah Associate Professor of Architecture Delft School of DesignStudioStudio Vertical Cities Asia KeywordsMaster Studio (U, A, BT, RE&H) China, public space, density,Chair of Materialisation, landscape, architecture, urbanArchitecture design, air quality, placemakingChair of Urban Design, UrbanismVertical Cities AsiaThe studio is part of the Vertical City Asia Competition. The results of theP2 were sent in to compete. This international competition is organized forfive successive years - 2011/2015 - by the School of Design and Environ-ment of the National University of Singapore, financially supported by theWorld Future Foundation. Successive locations will be in different Asiancountries; Chengdu is the first. Each year there is a main theme. This yearthe theme of clean air will be researched. The Brief:“Every year, for the next five years, a one square kilometer territory willbe the subject of the Competition. This area, to house 100,000 people livingand working, sets the stage for tremendous research and investigation intourban density, verticality, domesticity, work, food, infrastructure, nature,ecology, structure, and program – their holistic integration and the questfor visionary paradigm will be the challenges of this urban and architecturalinvention.This new environment will have a full slate of live-work-playprovisions, with the residential component making up to 50% of the totalfloor space. In the first of this series of competitions, the theme of “FreshAir” will be explored. In the congested cities of Asia, the problems of urbani
  4. 4. sprawl, traffic congestion and pollution have threatened the prospects ofbiodiversity, greenery, livability and general well-being of the inhabitants.The competition seeks design solutions for a balanced environment forurban life where public amenities and work opportunities are within easyaccess. It encourages efficient and clean modes of travels that contribute toclean and fresh air.”Competitors are design studios from the schools of architecture of:AsiaNational University of SingaporeTsinghua University, BeijingTongji University, ShanghaiUniversity of TokyoThe Chinese University of Hong KongEuropeEidgenossische Technische Hochschule/eth, ZurichDelft University of TechnologyNorth AmericaUniversity of MichiganUniversity of PennsylvaniaUniversity of California at BerkeleyEach participating school can nominate two competition entries. Oneteacher and two students are invited to the award seminar in Singapore,with lectures by the five members of the international jury and the teninternational teachers. Each year, the proceedings of the seminar will bepublished together with the twenty students’ projects. Prices are € 8.500, €5.700 and € 2.800.The tu Delft multidisciplinary studio will involve students in the last yearof their Master studies in Urbanism, Architecture and Real Estate & Hous-ing. Aspects to be researched are future design, urban density, physical andsocial sustainability, feasibility and so on. The start in January 2011 will bean intensive design workshop; the competition entry has to be sent in by theend of June 2011. The emphasis during the first semester is on group workfor the design and its argumentation. The project the Wall, the first designpart of this thesis (h4.1 t/m h4.3), conducted together with Herman Pel andBart van Lakwijk have won the second prize. During the second semesterstudents will finish their Master thesis in their chosen discipline of Urban-ism, Architecture or Real Estate & Housing. ii
  5. 5. the wallThe re-discovery of ordinary public places in an alternative urban architecturalmodel for Chinese cities – The case of ChengduThis thesis is a specific research about the city of Chengdu in China. Thecity of Chengdu is at the very heart of the dramatic transformation of Chinaand can be seen as a perfect model city of Chinese recent growth. Togetherwith the city of Chongqing it is one of the largest urban agglomerationsin the world. In terms of gdp, fdi, infrastructure and living standards, itshowed an explosive growth. The city almost doubled in size the last 15years.There are however enormous qualitative challenges for further growthconcerning land use, domesticity, public space, biodiversity, water and airquality. The current city model, similar to numerous other cities in China,is however no longer durable, to cope with this. The result of the thesis isto propose an alternative urban model that will guide the city towards com-pact growth, giving at the same time ‘place’ to the millions of new migrants.Thereby it acknowledges public space as the crucial building block fora durable city. The hypothesis is that by improving the spatial quality ofpublic spaces, other problems will mitigate as well. The thesis is unfoldedin four parts: Introduction, Urban China, Theory, Design and Conclusion.The thesis is introduced by providing a framework, which describes thebackground and derives a problem statement from this. Urban China is achapter with data in which the challenges will be researched in order toget a clear pictures of the matters at hand. The theory part discusses morethoroughly the problem of public space and provides a framework for thedesign part. A conclusion will be derived from this.The thesis is written within the context of the studio Vertical Cities Asia.This means that part of the results were send in to the international designcompetition in Singapore in which it received the second prize. Thereby, itwas obligatory to develop an urban architectural design for 100,000 peopleon 1km2 on the south of the city. At least the theme of clean air needed to beaddressed in the design.The problems in the case of Chengdu exist in large parts of Urban China.These cities are also faced with critical problems due to an uncontrolled dis-persed growth and, thereby neglecting the importance of public space forthe everyday lives of their residents.Keywords: China, public space, density, landscape, architecture, urbandesign, air quality, placemakingiii
  6. 6. Fingermodel of Chengdu Doomsday The Wall156 KM2 The Wall encloses space on every scale iv
  7. 7. 1 INTRODUCTION1.1 URBAN BILLION 21.2 PROBLEM FIELD 3 1.2.1 Challenge 3 1.2.2 Qualitative growth 3 1.2.3 Alternative urban architectural model 6 1.2.4 Hypothesis: Re-discovery of ordinary public places 12 1.2.5 Case-study Chengdu 121.3 PROBLEM STATEMENT 201.4 METHODOLOGY 211.5 RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE 23 1.5.1 Scientific and societal relevance 23 1.5.2 Ethics 232 URBAN CHINA2.1 DEMOGRAPHY 282.2 ECONOMY 302.3 TRANSPORT 322.4 LIVING 342.5 ENVIRONMENT 362.6 CROSSROADS 383 THEORY3.1 PROBLEM OF THE ORDINARY 42 3.1.1 Urban placemaking 42 3.1.2 Theory structure 443.2 DEFINITION OF THE ORDINARY 45 3.1.2 Importance of ordinary public places 45 3.2.2 Situate the ordinary 49 3.2.3 Synthesis 513.3 LOSS OF THE ORDINARY 52 3.3.1 Socio-spatial dialectic 52 3.3.2 Radical transformation in China 52 3.3.3 Placelessness 55 3.3.4 Body and environment 593.4 PERCEPTION OF THE ORDINARY 60 3.4.1 Perception of space 60 3.4.2 Principles 61v
  8. 8. 3.4.3 Linearity 62 3.4.4 Hierarchy 64 3.4.5 Unity 68 3.4.6 Human scale 70 3.4.7 Enclosure 71 3.4.8 Understanding Chinese cities 743.5 THE RE-DISCOVERY OF THE ORDINARY 76 3.5.1 Discussion 76 3.5.2 Form places by enclosing spaces 774 DESIGN4.1 DIAGNOSIS 82 4.1.1 Chengdu 82 4.1.2 Doomsday 944.2 CONCEPT 102 4.2.1 The Wall 102 4.2.2 Framework 104 4.2.3 Increasing air quality 104 4.2.4 Generic becomes specific 1104.3 FRAMEWORK 116 4.3.1 Building the wall 116 4.3.2 Integrating the wall 1224.4 ZOOM IN: THE SPONGE 141 4.4.1 Existing context 144 4.4.2 Series of enclosed worlds 150 4.4.3 Walking from metro to bedroom 2024.5 EVALUATION 218 4.5.1 Hypothesis evaluation 218 4.5.2 Critique 218 4.5.3 The Wall as integral design 221 4.5.4 New Chinese Walls 2235 CONCLUSION Samenvatting 228 Bibliography 230 Image credits 225 Acknowledgements 236 vi
  9. 9. 1INTRODUCTIONThis chapter will describe the background and problem field resultingin a problem statement. A main research and design question and a setof sub-questions will be derived from this. 1
  10. 10. 1.1 URBAN BILLIONChina’s economic success and rapidly rising standard of living have resultedin a historically unprecedented surge of urbanization that is set to continue( 1). If the current trend continues, nearly one billion people will live inChina’s cities by 2025, requiring construction on a scale never seen before( 2). China will have 221 cities with more than one million inhabitants -compared with 35 in Europe today - of which 23 cities will have more thanfive million people. Research by McKinsey (2008) projects that China willbuild almost 40 billion square meters of floor space over the next 20 years,requiring the construction of between 20,000 and 50,000 new skyscrapers(buildings of more than 30 floors) - the equivalent of up to ten New YorkCities. The urban economy will generate over 90 percent of China’s gdp by2025 (McKinsey, 2008).As the economy grows, it is likely that China will continue to increase itsprosperity. Even the recent global financial crisis will likely have smalleffect on the long-term perspectives on urbanization. In all likelihood thenation’s continuing urbanization will ensure that China will fulfill theambitious economic growth target set out at the 17th Party Congress in2007 (Hu, 2007) of quadrupling per capita gdp by 2020. 1.1 Urbanization. Predominantly in Asia.2
  11. 11. Compound annual growth rate, 2005–25Millions of people % 926 2.4 120 6.9 104 1.1 Megacities (10+) 572 32 316 3.4 Big cities 84 (5–10) Midsized cities 161 (1.5–5) 233 2.2 Small cities 150 (0.5–1.5) Big towns 0.3 145 154 (<0.5) 2005 2025 1.2 One billion people in Chinese cities. 491.2 PROBLEM FIELD1.2.1 ChallengeAt the same time the expansion of China’s cities will represent a huge chal-lenge. Of the slightly over 350 million people that China will add to itsurban population by 2025, more than 240 million will be migrants (Woet-zel, et al., 2008a). The recent announcement of land-reform measures willenable migrants to move even more easily to cities, what could increase thescale of urbanization even further. Urbanization along current trends willimply major pressure points for many cities including the challenges ofsecuring sufficient public funding for the provision of social services, anddealing with demand and supply pressures on arable land, energy, publicspace, air quality, water, domesticity, work, food, infrastructure, biodiver-sity, greenery, liveability and health of residents (more in chapter 2).1.2.2 Qualitative growthAll of these challenges will intensify in time, as China’s leaders acknowl- In this thesis an urban archi-edge (Hu, 2007). Although China will likely achieve its gdp growth target tectural model is understood,in the timeframe it has set for itself, a focus solely on gdp growth will not as a schematic description ofachieve a qualitative and harmonious development that the Chinese leader- a city, with statements on allship desire. An alternative urban architectural model, that will take into levels of scale, from regional,account a qualitative growth, will be significant for research to provide a landscape to the architecturalbalanced growth path for China. scale. 3
  12. 12. 1.3 Central Business District of Chengdu.4
  13. 13. 5
  14. 14. > 900 800 - 900 700 - 800 600 - 700 Chengdu 500 - 600 400 - 500 300 - 400 200 - 300 100 - 200 50 - 100 0 - 50 Population density, China 2006 (persons/sqkm). Vertical Cities Asia Vertical Cities Asia Competition competition is organized by Therefore the competition of Vertical Cities Asia, in which this thesis com- the National University of petes, promotes “the development of ideas and theories in urban growthSingapore and financially sup- and architectural form related to density, liveability and sustainability spe- ported by the World Future cific to the rapid and exponential growth of urbanism in Asia…it seeks Foundation. design solutions for a balanced environment for urban life where public amenities and work opportunities are within easy access. It encourages effi- cient and clean modes of travels that contribute to clean and fresh air.” (nus, 2011) But how will this model look like? 1.2.3 Alternative urban architectural model As China seeks to handle the enormous challenges, there are in fact sev- eral urban architectural models open, which can, to a great extent, influence how urbanization plays out. McKinsey Global Institute (mgi) studied Chi- na’s urbanization and its future possible urban architectural model (2008). McKinsey developed and examined four urbanization models, each plau- sible outcomes of urbanization over the next 20 years ( 4 5). Dispersed model The current trend points to China heading toward a dispersed rampant urbanization model ( 4). However, the costs in this dispersed model, are 6
  15. 15. Distributed Town- growth ization Super Hub andPressure points cities spoke Pressure points Land Land development development Congestion Congestion Labor and Labor and skills skills Funding Funding Water Water Energy High pressure Energy Medium pressure Pollution Pollution Low pressure (McKinsey 2011) 1.4 Current trend dispersed scattered growth. 1.5 Suggested pattern concentrated growth.according to McKinsey unacceptably high. The arable land resources willshrink rapidly, the landscape and environment will further be affected andother problems will increase.From a spatial point of view, public space is especially under pressure:Subtle pedestrian streets and courtyards, intertwined with its context arein contrast with a superimposed neo-corbusian landscape with enclosedislands and high-rise superslabs (Mars and Hornsby, 2008; Hartog, 2010).An interesting contrast, which gives considerable freedom to build, leadingto a continuous promise of reconstruction and increase in living standards,but according to several scholars the public space is more and more separat-ing Chinese society resulting in an alienated relationship with the city (Zhu,2003; Hassenpflug, 2004; Miao, 2011; Abramson, 2008; Olds, 2001; Perryand Selden, 2010). Ordinary public space, which is space that is meaningfulfor everyday life of local residents and communities, is being neglected tobe a basic building block in the city, fortifying the problems China is facing. 7
  16. 16. Expensive lakeside bought by speculators. Sattelite Chenggong with 100,000 new apartments.Half finished new town in the middle of the desert in Inner Mongolia. 8
  17. 17. Ordos, a new town build in five years.Low rise development outside Changsha. New development north-east of Xinyang. New dispersed developments giving rise to a real estate bubble. Some estimate as many as 64 million empty apartments are on the market (Finance Asia 2011). 9
  18. 18. Urban population Urban GDP Urban GDP/capita Million people Renminbi trillion, 2000 Renminbi thousand, 2000 2005 573 12 21 Supercities 917 68 76 Hub and spoke 930 68 75 Distributed 944 60 65 growth Townization 935 54 62 +26% +23% 1.6 Generate highest per capita GDP. Urban energy intensity Urban GDP Urban energy demand BTU per renminbi Renminbi trillion, 2000 QBTUs 2005 4,917 12 59 Supercities 1,926 68 131 +20% Hub and spoke 2,088 68 142 Distributed growth 2,317 60 139 Townization 2,278 54 123 1.7 Higher efficient use of energy, +15%More effective control of pollution. 8 9 China total arable land Million hectares Loss 2005–2025, % 125 Central government 120 target minimum for 2010 115 Hub and spoke –7 Supercities –8 110 105 100 –20 Distributed growth 95 Townization –22 1.8 Contain loss of arable land. 0 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 1 10
  19. 19. Compact modelMcKinsey (McKinsey, 2008) suggests that a more compact pattern of urban-ization ( 5) is most likely to reduce the pressures and increase the overallproductivity of the urban system. In contrary, a dispersed growth modelfortifies these pressures ( 4). Therefore McKinsey strongly recommendsthat new urban architectural models should guide China toward a compactpattern of urbanization. This compact growth would have many positiveimplications linked to higher productivity and efficiency ( 6 7 8). Thiswould include: ° Highest per capita GDP ( 6). Compact growth models, would produce up to 20 per- cent higher per capita gdp than more dispersed growth models. Scale effects and pro- ductivity gains are larger in compact urbanization models. ° More efficient use of energy ( 7). Energy productivity would be about 20 percent higher. ° Lowest rate of loss of arable land ( 8). There could be a reduction in the loss of arable land to only 7 percent to 8 percent of the current total, whereas a more dispersed model would result in losses of more than 20 percent. ° More efficient mass-transit. Compact urban architectural models would attain the necessary public-transport capacity with lower costs and higher chances of successful execution. ° More effective control of pollution ( 7). Although megacities that develop in a super- cities scenario would face extremely serious peak pollution problems (e.g. nox), mgi research shows that enforcement of measures to regulate pollution is more wide- spread and effective in larger cities than in smaller cities. Moreover, McKinsey states that a dispersed urban architectural model would generate the greatest amount of emissions countrywide, and would produce more water pollution than would a com- pact urban architectural model. °Availability of talent. While talent will tend to concentrate in big cities, we expect a significant shortage of these workers in small and midsized cities (the trend is already clear today). Compact urbanization scenarios would thus have the advantage of having an abundance of talent in centres that are the engines of economic growth, enabling a more rapid transition to higher-value-added activities.Policy shifts are required but the benefits described above are enormous.Not only for China, but also for the rest of the world. Therefore it is impor-tant to research alternative urban architectural models that could guideUrban China towards compact urbanization. Not only investigating verti-cality is important, but also a new efficient planning system is crucial. 11
  20. 20. urban development 2 km from the site in Chengdu. 1.2.4 Hypothesis: Re-discovery of ordinary public places The hypothesis of this thesis is that by re-discovering the fundamental role of ordinary public space in Chinese cities, several other problems can be addressed and even be mitigated. It can guide Chinese cities towards a more compact urban architectural model. This hypothesis is endorsed by several scholars. “Streets and their sidewalks, the main public spaces of the city, are its most vital organs” (Jacobs, 1961, p. 29). Others suggest that if “...we do right by our streets we can in large measure do right by the city as a whole – and, therefore and most importantly, by its inhabitants” (Jacobs, 1961, p. 314; Carmona et al., 2005; Gehl, 2001). Since ‘public place’ is such a broad and culturally defined term, an extensive theoretical study will investigate the meaning and perception of the term in China. 1.2.5 Case-study Chengdu Every year, for the next five In this thesis the city of Chengdu is used as a case-study. The competitionyears, a one square kilometre assigned a small strip of land on the south of the city ( 9) to design a master-territory will be the subject of plan for 100,000 people per sqkm, whereby it was obligatory to address the the competition. air quality. The city of Chengdu is at the very heart of the dramatic trans- formation ( 10) of China and can be seen as a perfect model city of Chinese recent growth. It is also a city under pressure of an enormous amount of new migrants from the rural areas. Like in many Chinese cities, the recent growth is explosive, and a lot of valuable arable land is lost. 12
  21. 21. 1.10 Comparative analysis of Chengdu and world cities. Chengdu sits in an emerging new region for important cities: interior China. CHENGDU BOSTON LONDON NEW YORK BANGALORE MUNICH TOULOUSE SF BAY AREA WASHINGTON ATLANTA DUBAI TOKYO SEATTLE MOSCOW SEOUL CAIRO MEXICO CITY SINGAPORE SAO PAOLO EVERY RING EQUALS 1000KM WASHINGTON SF BAY AREA BANGALORE TOULOUSE NEW YORK CHENGDU ATLANTA LONDON MUNICH BOSTON SEATTLE TOKYO DUBAI DENSITY243 P/KM2 305 P/KM2 355 P/KM2 372 P/KM2 656 P/KM2 888 P/KM2 1053 P/KM2 1096 KM2 2842 P/KM2 4286 P/KM2 4932 P/KM2 5847 P/KM2 7665 P/KM2 AREA21,693 KM2 3,885 KM2 232.1 KM2 14,412 KM2 22,681 KM2 12,390 KM2 808 KM2 17,405 KM2 369.2 KM2 310.4 KM2 1,572 KM2 2,187 KM2 709.5 KM2 POPULATION 5.47 M 1.19 M 4.05 M 3.93 M 7. 42 M 11.01 M 0.85 M 19.06 M 0. 62 M 1.33 M 7.75 M 13.01 M 1.33 MWORLD MAP AND SIZE COMPARISON 13
  22. 22. 1.9 Chengdu surrounded by a mountainous area. The site to be investigated is located in the south.14
  23. 23. 15
  24. 24. 1:100 000 N 5,76 km 4,21 km 3,41 km 1,14 km 1,22 km 1,12 km 3,13 km 5,58 kmBirdsnest Central Park Site location Dutch CityBeijing New York Chengdu Delft 16
  25. 25. 1.9 Planned area, site comparison and site.. 17
  26. 26. View on the site given by the competition.18
  27. 27. 19
  28. 28. 1.3 PROBLEM STATEMENT“In an age of ever increasing urbanization with massive migra-tions from the countryside to the city, China is at a crossroads.Existing dispersed urban architectural models can continue tobe recycled to accommodate increased populations, but this atthe same time fortifies problems in society, infrastructure andenvironment.Therefore, the aim of this thesis is to propose an alternativecompact urban architectural model that will take on the specif-ics of Chinese urban development, thereby fostering the spatialquality of ordinary public places. The city of Chengdu is sub-ject for this research. The testing ground is a small strip of landin the south of Chengdu. The final result is a masterplan, withaccording to the competition assignment an obligatory density of100,000 people per 1sqkm and ideas to increase the air quality.The main research question derived from this problem statementis: “How to design an alternative compact urban architecturalmodel for Chengdu, that fosters ordinary public places, resultingin a masterplan with a density of 100,000 people per sqkm?”20
  29. 29. Urban architectural modelAn urban architectural model is understood, as a schematic description ofa city, with statements on all levels of scale, from regional, landscape to thearchitectural scale and design of public space.Public spacePublic space is a broad term and in various cultures differently perceived. Public Space is also oftenIn the theory part, the term will be further discussed. The general defini- misconstrued to mean othertion is: Any area of land or water, which is not located within an enclosed things such as gatheringbuilding, and which is set aside for the use and enjoyment of the public. It place, which is an elementis the space, building or use that is equally open and available to all who of the larger concept of socialchoose to use it, and does not denote ownership. space.MasterplanThe masterplan should consist of a general strategy on city scale, an urbandesign for the given site and an elaboration on the architectural scale.1.4 METHODOLOGYFrom the main research question: “How to design an alternative compacturban architectural model for Chengdu, that fosters ordinary public places,resulting in a masterplan with a density of 100,000 people per sqkm?” Sev-eral sub-research questions and various methods to answer them can bederived from this.The research questions lead to the methods of: 1. What are the major threats and opportunities facing China and in par-ticular Chengdu?Data study (sources: Worldbank, McKinsey, Yearbooks, CIA World Factbook,)Interview with Robert Campbell, director of McKinsey Asia. 2. What are the spatial problems of public space in China?Theory study 3. How is public space spatially perceived in China?Theory study 4. What spatial building blocks for the design can be derived from dataand theory research ? 5. What is the current urban architectural model of Chengdu?Literature study, policies study, historical analysis 21
  30. 30. 6. What is the landscape system? Water, biodiversity, vegetation?Literature study + GIS 7. What would be an interesting program mix for the site? What wouldbe the best land use strategy? Which building typologies, should be part ofthe masterplan?Typological research, Parametric Urban Design methods (Rhinoceros+Grasshopper+Ecotect) 8. What would be the planning guidelines for the masterplan?Policy study + Masterplan case studies 9. Which overall framework can be proposed to meet the requirements ofthe competition and the problem statement?Research by design Problem Statement H2 Data research H3 Theory H3.5 Building blocks H 4 Design H4.4 Zoom in H4.5 Reflection H5 Conclusion Methodology.22
  31. 31. Vertical Cities. The com- petition for tallest building in the world is taken seriously in China. Several Chinese cities put itself on the map with a new skyline icon, often designed by Western architects.1.5 RESEARCH SIGNIFICANCE1.5.1 Scientific and societal relevanceWhat this research aims to add is a new urban architectural model thatfosters public space quality. However, there are innumerable theorems andresearch about the state of urban China. This makes a humble positionabout the scientific and societal relevance of this thesis wise.The competition of Vertical Cities Asia searches for a integration of den-sity, verticality, domesticity, work, food, infrastructure, nature, ecology,structure and program. However the conventional building metric in thecontemporary Chinese masterplan is rather limited. The research in thisthesis questions the conventional metric. The hypothesis is that with alter-native ways of masterplanning, with respect for the specifics of China andthe environment will most likely mitigate the enormous pressures Chinesesociety is facing.1.5.2 EthicsSeveral critics state that because of Western intervention ( 11), Chinesecities are facing problems. Seog-Jeong Lee, director of city planning inSeoul in Atlantis 22.2 Urban Form (2011): “Increasingly, Asia seems to bethe place for the experimental high-rise works of western architects whodo not consider the local Asian context. I think that our cities need to dis-cover alternative ways to combine high density with urban quality withoutresorting to verticality”. This would be a possible ethical problem arisingthis research and design. Therefore, the thesis relies heavily on statistics andin the theory part an extensive cultural study will be exhibited. 23
  32. 32. 1.11 Shanghai CBD competition. Richard Rogers 1994.24
  33. 33. 25
  34. 34. 26
  35. 35. 2URBAN CHINATo avoid biases about Urban China, this chapter researches data aboutthe development of China with specific attention to the city of Chengdu.The data sheets are highlighted with the text. Finally this provides aclear overall picture of the state of demographics, economics, transport,living and environment in Urban China and Chengdu in particular. 27
  36. 36. POPULATION (million persons) 1 POPULATION DENSITY, China 2006 (persons/sqkm) 2 URBAN POPULATION (% of total population) 1400 90 80 1200 70 1000 60 50 800 > 900 40 800 - 900 600 700 - 800 30 600 - 700 Chengdu 500 - 600 400 20 400 - 500 300 - 400 10 200 200 - 300 100 - 200 0 50 - 100 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 0 0 - 50 1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 China United States European Union World source: Worldbank China United States European Union source: Worldbank source: POPULATION annual growth (%) 3 LIFE EXPECTANCY (years) 80 3 Harbin 2,5 75 Beijing 2 Huhhot 70 Taiyuan 1,5 65 1 Shanghai Xingping Suzhou 0,5 Nanchong 60 Changsha Chengdu Taizhou 0 1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 Cangnan 55 Shenzhen 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 -0,5 Xiamen China United States European Union World -1 POPULATION source: Worldbank China United States European Union World population 2005 source: Worldbank population 1990 source: McKinsey Global Institute4 POPULATION urban agglomoration, 2009 (million persons) GROWTH size and speed, 1990 - 2005 3 AGE population, China 2000 (1.265 million people) Suzhou fast Xingping Taizhou Cangnan Nanchong Huhhot Shenzhen 6,9 % 65+ Nanchong Taizhou Xiamen Suzhou Changsha 15 - 64 70,1 % (working age) Xiamen Tiayuan Harbin Chengdu Chengdu Beijing Shanghai Cangnan Changsha Shenzhen Harbin 0 - 14 22,9 % Huhhot Beijing Tiayuan Shanghai Xingping slow 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 small large 1990 2009 source: McKinsey Global Institute source: McKinsey Global Institute source: McKinsey Global Institute Demography 28
  37. 37. 5 POPULATION, Chengdu (million persons) POPULATION DENSITY, Chengdu 2008 (persons/sqkm) POPULATION growth, Chengdu (persons) 250000 14 12 200000 10 150000 8 6 100000 4 >7500 50000 5000-7500 2 2500-5000 0 1000-2500 0 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 500-1000 < 500 immigration growth natural growth -50000 source: United Nations source: China Statistical Yearbook source: China Statistical Yearbook 6 URBAN AREA, Chengdu (sqkm) 400 350 300 250 200 150 100 50 0 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 source: China Statistical Yearbook BUILT AREA growth before 1990 1990 - 2010 AGE population, Sichuan province 2000 MIGRATION moving & emigration, Chengdu 7 MIGRATION reasons per age, Chengdu 2001 (83.3 million people) 35 100% 90% 30 80% 65+ 7,5 % 25 70% 60% 20 50% better social services 15 40% more interesting life 15 - 64 69,9 % (working age) reunite with family 10 30% more experience 20% job transfer 5 10% higher pay obtain job 0 0% 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 under 24 24-29 30-39 40+ 0 - 14 22,6 % source: UNESCAP moving rate / 1000 persons emigration rate / 1000 persons source: China Statistical Yearbook source: WebsterIn 2010 1.3 billion people are living in China. Since 1960 population has dou-bled, while in the US and the EU the growth was only 140% ( 1). By 2030the urban population will almost double from 572m in 2005 to one billion (2). In 2010 in China the life expectancy is 72 years, 4 years higher than world-wide, but still 6 years lower than the US and the EU and there is also an enor-mous aging process ( 3). After Shanghai, Beijing and Shenzhen, Chengduis the fourth biggest urban agglomoration ( 4). There are about 12 millionpeople living in greater Chengdu ( 5). While the population of Chengdualmost doubled between 1980 and 2010, the urban area became 5 times bigger( 6). By 2013 the loss of arable land will go below the governments minu-mum. The main reason for this growth is immigration from rural areas tothe city. Important reasons for migration to the city are obtain a job, bettersocial services and reunite with family ( 7). 29