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Seoul Mayor unveils Yongsan urban park plan

Seoul Mayor unveils Yongsan urban park plan
January 6, 2017

The Mayor of Seoul, Park Won-soon, has announced that the city is moving forward with plans to develop a large new urban park in the central suburb of Yongsan after US troops relocate from the site during the course of this year.

After several rounds of talks stretching over decades, South Korea and the USA agreed in 2004 to relocate the US military headquarters in Yongsan to an expanded military base in Pyeongtaek, south of the Korean capital.

Citing the example of Vancouver’s Stanley Park, Mayor Park said that building Yongsan Park can decide Seoul’s future and reputation as a city landmark.

He explained “Stanley Park is one of the most beloved parks that was created by the Vancouver City Council  ... the park became Vancouver’s pride and a historical symbol, appreciated by citizens who can enjoy the green oasis in the city as well as to remember the historical meaning.”

In 2006, the Seoul Metropolitan Government announced it would turn the Yongsan base area into a park larger than London’s Hyde Park when US troops move out.

However, the city’s initiatal plan to use the entire 358 hectare site for the new park have been recuded with 93 hectares apporiated by South Korea’s military and 22 hectares for a new US embassy compound.

Within the available land, the design of the new park follow an ‘ecological spine’ from Namsam Mountain and lining distinct ‘parks within parks’ reconnecting existing neighborhoods and extending across the Han River. This wandering line, rich with woodland walks and outlooks, combines architecture and landscape to enhance the topography of the site, link multiple programs, and offer dynamic views of the city and mountains beyond.

In 1992, the US army returned 29 hectares of land, including a golf course, was returned to the city government for the use of the site for the National Museum of Korea and Yongsan Family Park.

In May last year, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport announced its plan to build a national science museum following the relocation of US troops.

The US Army Garrison in Yongsan was first set up in 1945, allowing US troops to hold de facto control of the Yongsan region for its strategic location in the capital after South Korea became independent.

5th July 2016 - CONCERT HALL TO REPLACE SEOUL OLYMPIC ARENA

13th January 2015 - BANGKOK AIMS TO INCREASE ITS GREEN SPACE

11th June 2013 - MUSEUMS DRIVE ECONOMIC AND CULTURAL TRANSFORMATION 

5th April 2011 - NATIONAL MUSEUM OF KOREA TOPS ASIAN MUSEUM ATTENDANCES


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