News / October 2019
Friday 21 June 2019
Transforming Shenzhen’s Xinqiao District into an Open Source City

HASSELL, together with collaborator UPDIS, has been announced as the winner of an international design competition to reimagine Shenzhen’s Xinqiao Smart and Innovation District, transforming it from a manufacturing centre to an intelligent, ecological and sustainable urban district.

Shenzhen is a global centre of high-tech design and manufacturing, with a unique culture of innovation at its heart. It’s a shining example of the value of building a complete ecosystem that contains everything needed for the production of high-end technology in one location.

The Xinqiao District in Shenzhen is a highly developed but ageing industrial area that the Urban Renewal Bureau of Bao’An District is looking to redevelop and reposition, and the site presents a unique opportunity to build a new model for ‘smart’ growth in Shenzhen.The Bureau wants to set a benchmark for urban transformation and enhance the competitiveness of the district, while more deeply integrating it into the Greater Bay Area and Guangzhou-Shenzhen Science and Technology Innovation Corridor. And most importantly, they aim to provide a human-scale environment that builds a balanced relationship between the city and nature.

Our winning concept for the 10 square kilometre area leverages Shenzhen’s existing innovative culture while also taking advantage of Xinqiao’s unique context at the foot of a mountainous nature park, blending it with regional characteristics.

Our team worked around the central vision of creating an Open Source City which will provide a diverse, open platform allowing for the incubation of an innovative culture. It will be a home to the design and production of world-class technology surrounded by and reconnected with nature. The winning regeneration masterplan is structured around four east-west green corridors that connect the city with the surrounding natural environment (Start-up Corridor, TOD Super Innovation Corridor, Central Business Service Corridor and River Corridor). The corridors also provide ‘green lungs’ for urban resilience – collecting and cleaning stormwater run-off  before redistributing it into the regional drainage system.

One of the key features of Shenzhen’s success is the combination of cutting-edge research in close proximity to manufacturing industries. Similarly, Xinqiao sits between a manufacturing district to the west and an academic research cluster to the east, and the HASSELL masterplan mixes these two activities together in the Xinqiao district.

HASSELL Principal Andrew Wilkinson said the project presented a great opportunity to explore the concept of a ‘smart and innovative city’.

“The challenge is, how do you create a new innovation district in what is already one of the world’s most innovative cities? We explored how the concept of ‘open source’, which is intrinsic to Shenzhen’s innovative culture, can translate into an integrated urban design outcome,” Andrew said.

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