aCTa masterplan new satelite town near epicentre of the 2008 earhquake
aCTa are master planners for Juyuan, one of four new satellite towns to be built around Dujiangyuan, Szechuan Province, China - a modest sized town by Chinese standards of 600,000 people thrust onto the worlds conscience by the tragic and devastating earthquake in 2008, the epicentre of which was a mere 50 km to the north.
Construction of the new towns, each with 150,000 residents, has commenced and some relocation has begun allowing reconstruction of Dujiangyuan previously famous primarily for its 2,000 year old irrigation system to commence. Once completed, the new towns will form part of an enlarged city with 1.2 million inhabitants.
Juyuan covers an area of 20 sq km and is located 10 km to the south of Dujiangyuan, between the Min river to the west and a new high-speed rail and expressway to the east, linking Dujiangyuan with the Szechuan state capital Chengdu to the south. The Min river is dry for much of the year, revealing huge boulders brought down from the mountains to the north, as the water is diverted through a network of minor irrigation tributaries, 3 of which run through Juyuan, parallel to the new railway and expressway.
With a low average development plot ratio of 0.6, aCTa established a range of densities from 4 for plots closest to the station to 0.5 for those furthest away and nearer the Min river. The denser centre of town will spread in a linear way following the tributaries that will give the town its main characteristic. A development program whilst promoting organic growth nevertheless recognises that those plots nearest the station will be the most valuable and likely attract the first commercial enterprises, in turn bringing the first residents to the town. Plots nearest the station and alongside the rivers are kept small and defined as home offices to encourage younger entrepreneurs willing to invest and take the risk of investing in a new town. Targetted industries include research, education and new technologies.
Larger enterprises will be located around the town perimeter as a noise and environmental barrier to the expressways.
Beyond the centre, the town is designed around a 6-neighbourhood hub, each at the heart of a maximum 8-minute walk district. A free bike system will be available to all residents and visitors, and park connectors with cycle routes link each neighbourhood hub with the town centre.
Arup are providing engineering and sustainability expertise, while Belt Collins provide landscaping.