Atkins to help rundown part of Chinese city blossom

UK consultant Atkins has won a contract to create a concept masterplan that will make the Chinese city of Nanchang, capital of Jiangxi Province, fit to host a world-class flower exhibition.

The project, commissioned by Tang Dynasty West Market Co. Ltd, aims to attract tourists and revitalise a rundown urban area.

The 1.9 sq km development will comprise a cultural zone, the new Flower Expo, and a commercial zone.

Specific buildings will include a five-star hotel set within a multi-themed garden and a floral science and technology museum.

Atkins said the plan supports Jiangxi’s development as part of the national Silk Road economic belt and promotes the growth of cultural tourism in the province, which lies along historic north-south trade routes.

Steven Ng, Atkins’ project director, said: "Our design objective is to create an eco-garden which integrates cultural, ecological and economic activities. It will improve the quality of the environment and stimulate the transformation of the surrounding areas. This approach is similar to the 2012 London Olympics’ strategy which used the high profile project to revitalise a rundown area of East London."

The development is located in Qingyunpu District of Nanchang, which has a population of around 5 million.

As the Changsha-Hangzhou high-speed rail will be in operation this year, the district will be a key transport hub connecting the north and south of China.

The area will also connect coastal cities to central China in response to the government’s strategic plan "Rise of Central China".

Work has already begun on the project, and will be completed in time for the flower exhibition in September 2016.

Image: Artist’s render of the new, 1.9 sq km development, which will comprise a cultural zone, the new Flower Expo, and a commercial zone (Atkins).

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