The result of the research project Buschmeyer + Cai took part in has been published.
Strategies for the preservation and redevelopment of old city quarters and buildings in China
using the example of DongKou Village on Zhibu Island.
With the rapid growth and densification of Chinese cities over the past 50 years, in many places the old city structures had to give way to the new city developments. The preservation of today?s remaining existing old residential quarters with their traditional Chinese courtyard houses is at risk for mainly two reasons: First, the density of the low rise old structure is too low for the valuable city center areas, where a lot of the historical quarters are located. Second, the old houses were usually not systematically modernized. Thus, historic courtyard houses, which are mostly still used as residential buildings, are often dilapidated, utilities are obsolete and no longer correspond to the comfort standards of contemporary living. On the other hand, the old towns are now more and more understood to be valuable documents of Chinese history, tradition and identity that ought to be preserved. Between these conflicting interests there is a need for strategies that reconcile cultural with economic interests.
Against this background, the aim of this co-operation is a German-Chinese transfer of knowledge and ideas to develop new potential architectural strategies for the preservation and redevelopment of old city quarters. The study aims to preserve as much of the local urban fabric and old buildings as possible and at the same time find ways and strategies to transform historic sites into a contemporary, livable or usable part of the city.
Contributers: Guestprof. Dr. Matthias Ballestrem, Wei Cai, Philipp Buschmeyer, Bogdan Stugar, Jin Haiping, Daniela Schaffarczyk, Reidar Mester