For several years Korean cities have been faced with a radical change in planning and construction: While previously the small-scale, grown structures in existing neighborhoods were demolished and replaced by high-rise buildings, the conversion of the existing buildings (preserving structural and social structures) is currently gaining in importance. This has advantages for various reasons:
The “identity” of the city can be preserved and further shaped.
A lot of “grey energy” is tied up in the existing buildings (the use of new energy for new buildings is no longer necessary).
The existing neighborhoods often offer affordable living space or opportunities for living and working equally.
Existing social structures and neighborly relations are maintained.
Within the frame of the “Urban Voids”-Project in April 2016 the “Seoul Living Lab” was held in the Sangdo 4 dong – quarter in Seoul, which was designated as an urban regeneration pilot project. As part of the Seoul Living Lab, experts and selected students from Baden-Württemberg and Seoul drew up concepts in 2016 on how the refurbishment of existing buildings and quarters in the Sangdo 4 Dong quarter could be implemented in terms of planning and construction.
A special characteristic of this workshop was the combination of the participants:
treasure trove of experience:
Experts from science and practice worked together with students on the same question.
The participants were made up of roughly equal numbers of Germans and Koreans.
The participants came from the fields of urban planning, transport and energy.
After all, there was a lot to learn in various ways: in addition to the professional exchange, experiences could also be made about the occurrence of misunderstandings due to linguistic and cultural differences.
After the 10-day working phase, the results were presented by the German and Korean experts to the residents of the quarter and the representatives of the city administration.
The results were summarized in the book “Seoul Living Lab”, which is available in bookshops under ISBN 978-3-89986-262-1.