Daoliu River Park

Luzhou, Sichuan, China

Gillespies and John Thompson & Partners (JTP) won a competition to design a river park in China that would provide city dwellers an opportunity to experience the best aspects of rural life within the city boundary.

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The brief was to design a masterplan for the Daoliu River ecological corridor, a wide river valley site that spans 900 hectares and is approximately 15–20 minutes' drive from Luzhou Old Town. Despite the site's proximity to the city it remained relatively unspoiled with some small scale farming and rice paddies.

The masterplan divided the site into several character parks such as the ‘Sports Park, ‘Arts Park’, and ‘Forest Park’, each providing different activities. The new community was centred around a farm village, with a market hall for farmers to sell their produce and facilities for “agri‑tourism”, providing visitors an opportunity to grow and pick their own produce. The masterplan also proposed widening a section of the river to create a lake which could be used for boating, canoeing and sailing.