Project Post-Expo Riverfront: Research of Sustainable Planning Strategies at Mega-Event Legacy Site

The Shanghai Expo was touted by the Chinese government as yet another first-rate global scale event, similar in significance to the Beijing Olympics, which were set to symbolize the economic and political rise of China in the 21st century. The event would demonstrate the enormous progress of China’s urban development in the heart of the nation’s economic hub of Shanghai, to both the Chinese populace and foreign nations. The event received extensive media coverage in the Chinese media in the lead up to, and during, the World Expo. China analyst Tom Doctoroff stated that “In terms of what the city was able to achieve, the Chinese were impressed.” Taking Shanghai’s increasing internationalization as a base, the studio was structured into two projects. Project 1: Urban Strategy Practice – Site Record, Interpretation, and Research Students were analyzing the significant elements of the urban fabric and their temporal development, and translated their findings in well formatted collage maps and sections. Photos and critical mapping were crucial for the students to understand the man-made infrastructure and natural system. More detailed exploration continued, based on the issues derived from the theme of a focused area. The further analysis of the research area at a neighborhood-scale was built upon the research from the large scale networks. Project 2: Site Design Students engaged with the design and planning of an urban regeneration strategy based on the research and analysis from Project 1. Presentation strategies for large scale projects were one of the training focuses and were studied and developed before the final review.