The site of Shuei Jiao She Cultural Park was built in 1937 under the Japanese regime as the residence of the Navy Air Force. After the nationalist regime, it became the residence of 433 Air Force, which build more residential units for the officers and their families.
As the design started, the site of the cultural park was in a ruinous state of overgrown weeds and fallen walls. However, the existing large trees have formed an elegant gesture after careful trimming. The ground is also open to the sunshine. Meanwhile, the contours of the buildings, courtyards, and periphery walls also emerge behind the screen of plants.
In addition to the restoration of old buildings, as demanded by the usual historic preservation projects, the design treats the Shuei Jiao She Cultural Park as the most important cultural and historical field as well as an urban park in the center of the city. The details of spatial design also demand an interweaving of different layouts in response to the programming of each area, such as the conversation space for 3 to 5 people, theater space for 10 to 20 people, and an outdoor theater / civic plaza for more than a hundred people. The circulation system thus accommodates the flowing, semi-flowing, and static activities instead of the monotone one-way lane that follows the planters and paths.
The planting design also preserves the existing species on the site that tells the evolutionary history of the plant community. We also retain the fruit trees of mango, star fruit, and longyan trees planted by the residents. The newly planted native species in Taiwan present the natural atmosphere of the four seasons and the balancing act of sustainable ecology.
The wilderness has taken over the site during the decades of obsoletion. The images of fallen walls have become the supporting character of the park. I consider the landscape as a theater of meadowland on which the building stands, resembling a still-life painting on the canvas of nature.
The landscape design of the Shuei Jiao She Cultural Park threads through the experience of the plants, landform, building, and relics, shuttling between the historic buildings displayed on the lawn like artworks. It also responds to the geographic pattern of the Tainan city in its primal state. The intention of tracing back to the original appearance of the landscape also echoes the pedagogical meaning of the cultural park.
Other designers involved in the design of landscape (architects and landscape architects):
Project location: Xinyi Rd., Daya Dist., Taichung City, Taiwan
Design year: 2018/08-2019/05
Year Built: 2019/06-2019/10