Cars Given The Cold Shoulder In China’s City Of The Future

Cars Given The Cold Shoulder In China’s City Of The Future

Architects' environmentally enhanced urban design includes an advanced multi-modal transportation network.

Emma Hutchings
  • 24 february 2012

An environmentally enhanced urban design for the Beijing Bohai Innovation City in China by architects Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) has transportation hubs linking trains, bikes and pedestrians to urban activities and businesses as well as nearby seaports, airports and metropolitan areas. Cars will be permitted, but they are largely demoted from prevailing urban design priorities.

The plan for the Innovation City, which has won an international design competition, centers the new environmentally-friendly district along the high-speed-rail line linking the national capital to the port city of Tianjin. The project’s chief designer, Thomas Hussey, said:

Beijing Bohai Innovation City establishes a new model of transit-oriented development at an unprecedented scale. The new district will leverage the high-speed rail to bridge two major metropolitan areas and create a sustainable urban environment that concentrates walkable, compact densities around transit stations, while still preserving existing agriculture and green space.

The plan’s transportation network takes advantage of the city’s proximity to the airport and unites high-speed rail with metro and bus routes. Along with the pedestrian and bicycle-friendly street design, this would enable 80% of the city’s personal transportation to be by transit, walking and cycling, conveniently connecting residents to workplaces, schools and amenities via green streets and pathways. Click through for more pictures of SOM’s design:



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