Cityförster to Lead Design of New Beijing Government District


Courtesy of Cityförster

Courtesy of Cityförster

The multi-disciplinary team ‘Wasser Hannover’, Cityförster and the Chinese Academy for Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD) have been selected as the first prize winners in one of three initial competitions to design the new seat of government for the Chinese capital of Beijing. Part of a planned merging of Beijing with the surrounding cities of Tianjin and Hebei, the new government district will be located in Tongzhou, an existing district southeast of the city center.

The winning scheme follows a ‘landscape-planning-based’ concept that is organized through a holistic water and open-space system, responding to the ecological and technical needs of the government.

Project description via Cityförster.


Courtesy of Cityförster

Courtesy of Cityförster

‘Better Water – Better City’

Through the merging of Beijing with the cities of Tianjin and Hebei, China’s new megacity of Jing-Jin-Ji will emerge, with 130 million inhabitants. To relieve the Beijing city core, this project involves moving the government district from the historical city centre to Tongzhou. The competition entry comprised the planning of a 600-hectare open space to complement the existing urban-development master plan. The varied open spaces will be used for sport, culture, commerce and education, whereby the identity of each space will be considerably shaped by the proposed water concept.

Chiyan Peng, the general manager of Wasser Hannover, explains that it is especially “the proposal for a holistic water system that fits into and improves the existing urban-development master plan, and also considerably helps shape the natural and urban environment that was decisive for winning first place.”


Courtesy of Cityförster

Courtesy of Cityförster

In keeping with the slogan ‘better water – better city’, the specially developed spongecity measures from flood protection to rainwater management all the way to blue-green infrastructure are integrated into the city. The ecologically and technically necessary rainwater canals, for example, are generally not run underground, but instead staged as a special city landscape element and made into an ecologically valuable identifying feature of the services, retail and residential quarters. In this way, different subspaces can be developed and special programmes and functions can be offered through water design that will characterise the liveliness and atmosphere of the future government district. The combination of innovative water-cleaning technologies with a resource-saving grey-water use concept makes for a convincing overall design.


Courtesy of Cityförster

Courtesy of Cityförster

Courtesy of Cityförster

Courtesy of Cityförster

Oliver Seidel, urban planner and founding partner of Cityförster, stresses that “the close cooperation of urban planners, landscape architects and water experts in an integrated planning process made the development of this future-oriented district possible. The required technical water-treatment facilities can in this way be developed into an attractive place with character. They can be designed on a human scale despite the large area under consideration.”


Courtesy of Cityförster

Courtesy of Cityförster

Assignment: Landscaping Planning Design Proposal of Administrative Office Area in Beijing Urban Subcenter
Client: Beijing, China
Size: 600 ha
Partners: Dr. Ing. Verena Brehm (Architect), Dipl. Ing. Oliver Seidel (Architect + City Planner)
Team: M. Sc. Tim Mohr, M. Arch. Felix Rebers
Cooperation: Wasser Hannover (Cityförster, itwh, ipp), Chinese Academy for Urban Planning and Design (CAUPD)
Graphic: CAUPD
Award: First Prize

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