LAVA and Aspect design the Central Park of Ho Chi Minh City – In partnership with ASPECT, LAVA won the competition to design Central Park in HCMC, Vietnam.
Commissioned by the committee of the Ho Chi Minh City, the contest’s winning entry will be built in 2020. LAVA’s proposal for the 16 hectares Park, commemorates the old infrastructural value of the plot, once home to the 19th-century French railway tracks, and celebrates the implementation of a future mobility system.
”The site has always been about transportation. It was the first train station in south East Asia, it’s currently a bus terminal and in the near future, it will be Vietnam’s first metro station. Our design references this history and future mobility. Known locally as ‘September 23 Park’ it also hosts the important annual spring festival.” — Chris Bosse, director of LAVA
The old railways are reintegrated into the master plan through the creation of elevated pedestrian walkways on them. These additions define different types of spaces, each having its own program and purpose, like outdoor art galleries, water features, music and theatre performance pavilions, skate park, sports zones, playgrounds, forests, waterfalls, etc. Therefore, the historical old urban fabric is not forgotten. Its new function includes a walkability system of directional trails, accesses, and green spaces. A twisting steel sculpture closes the scheme, memorializes the transport history and creates a link to underground retail and the new metro station.
“LAVA’s design transforms this urban oasis into an informal space with the emphasis on user experience and place-making whilst also meeting the 21st-century requirements of social and environmental sustainability. Renouncing the formal, unfriendly grid, our design is informal, multiuse, friendly, connected and continuous.” — Chris Bosse, director of LAVA
Sunken gardens provide performance and play spaces and connect to an underground shopping area linking to the new metro station. Artificial trees provide shelter and harvest water and energy. ‘Water purification’ trees collect rainwater to be recycled and used for watering, drinking fountains and fire hydrants. ‘Ventilation trees’ reduce heat and create fresh air. ‘Solar trees’ feature solar panels angled to optimize radiation and store power, and info screens, charging docks, WIFI routers.
“Visioned as a place for people, the design was formulated with a focus on the diversity of experiences needed to create a world-class central park: one that responds to its context, climate, and community, meets the needs of people on a daily basis, as well as for visitors, gatherings, and celebration. The design is layered with a series of spaces, places, and experiences. Benchmarked against other world class parks, the result is a park for the future which respects its past and culture”. — Steven Buckle, Director ASPECT Studio
LAVA, founded in 2007 by directors Chris Bosse, Tobias Wallisser, and Alexander Rieck has offices across the continents, in Germany, Australia, and China. The firm has currently countless projects under construction like a new university master plan and headquarters in Riyadh, mixed-use developments in Berlin, HCMC, and Hangzhou. Aspect Studios are a cabinet of designers, landscape architects, and urbanists, with the purpose of generating designs that meet the humanistic and environmental needs of a context, and people and experience-orientated urban places.