Shenzhen, the pivotal window for China's reform and opening up, is the core engine of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. It is committed to leading the way in constructing the Greater Bay Area, creating a pioneering Chinese model of harmonious coexistence between man and nature, and providing China's experience in implementing the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Referring to the best waterfront experience worldwide, Shenzhen plans to build 1000-kilometer Blueway by 2025, coordinating the functions of water, shoreline and urban space to achieve an ecological vision that ecology, life and industry exists in harmony within the context of scenic rivers and lakes.
"Blueway", proposed by Guangdong Province, is a creative practice inspired by President Xi Jinping’s thought on ecological civilization. It is an overall summary of the protection and development of water bodies as well as waterfront areas including bays, rivers, lakes and reservoirs. Based on ensured water security, advanced water environment treatment, restored water ecology, and improved water landscape, the construction of Blueway, centered on water, is aiming to create a diversified, multifunctional, and comprehensive waterfront space with an integration of safe flood passages, scenic ecological corridors, beautiful recreation routes, unique cultural express, and green industrial chains.
The "5 + 1" Blueway (hereinafter referred to as "5 + 1" Blueway), consists of five rivers( Maozhou River, Shenzhen River, Guanlan River, Longgang River and Pingshan River) and one lake (Guangming Lake), is the core part of A Thousand Miles Construction Project of Shenzhen Blueway, striving to create a Shenzhen prototype for Ten Thousand Miles Construction Project of Guangdong Provincial Blueway.
一、Project Overview and Positioning
The Maozhou River is located in the northwest of Shenzhen. It originates from the north of the Yangtai Mountain and flows into the Pearl River. The watershed covers an area of 344 square kilometers and spans across Guangming District and Baoan District. The total length of the main stream of the Maozhou River is about 30.7 kilometers, of which the pilot section (12.9 kilometers) from Zhoujia Avenue to Tangxiachong has been under construction. The tender covers 17.8 kilometers length (including an upstream section of 6.3 kilometers from Songbai Road to Zhoujia Avenue, and 11.5 kilometers downstream from Tangxiayong to Maozhou River Marine Industrial Base). There are dense urban villages and industrial zones along the river, thus urban renewal and redevelopment are urgently needed.
The construction objectives of the Maozhou River are to take advantage of the Blueway project to coordinate urban renewal and redevelopment and manage construction land of the shoreline; together with enhancing the co-governance of water, industry and city to elevate public service functions and industrial upgrades along the shoreline. Meanwhile, the project is aiming to improve the land-use efficiency of the riverside, accelerate urban renewal, upgrade the space quality and accumulate green energy businesses. Additionally, the allocation of land resources should be optimized through regarding the Blueway as the main line to improve the public space network and to accommodate public activities, build slow traffic system, and improve riverfront accessibility, building the Maozhou River into " the green vein of the
East Bay Area and the West Gateway of Shenzhen."
The Shenzhen River serves as the natural border between Hong Kong and Mainland China. It originates from the Wutong Mountain and flows into the Shenzhen Bay. The watershed area is 313 square kilometers. The northern side of the river situates two flouring districts, Luohu District and Futian District, and the southern side is Hong Kong's important fishing and agricultural area. The main tributaries within the Shenzhen border are the Shawan River, the Buji River and the Futian River. The tender scope is the entire section of the mainstream of the Shenzhen River (north side), which is about 14.5 kilometers long.
The construction objectives of the Shenzhen River section are, through regarding the Shenzhen River as the main line, to build it as a showcase of China’s reform and opening up as well as the origin of Shenzhen-Hong Kong exchanges, to create the connection between the east and west bays of Shenzhen and to create public space. Meanwhile, it is aiming to strengthen spatial connection with Blueways nearby, including structuring a public space system with the Xinzhou River, the Futian River, the Buji River, and flood drainage channels of Shenzhen Reservoir, together with focusing on the overall construction of ecological conservation and spatial continuity with the east and west Bays. On the basis of Shenzhen-Hong Kong boundary river management regulations and five major customs ports, the Shenzhen River will be a showcase for the Shenzhen-Hong Kong exchange and cooperation with a landscape interpretation towards the reform and opening history and custom culture carried by it. The Shenzhen River Zone will be created as a vital open space for citizens for the openness and the accessibility of public spaces, to form a charming link showing Shenzhen and Hong Kong's original affinity and human vitality.
The Guanlan River, originating from the Da’naoke Mountain, is located in Longhua District, north-central Shenzhen. It flows into the Dongjiang River of Dongguan City, with watershed area of 189 square kilometers. The main tributaries are the Minzhi River, the Zhangkengjing River, and the Baihua River. The mainstream of the Guanlan River is about 14 kilometers long, of which the trial section from Renmin Road to Huanguan South Road is 1.3 kilometers long, and the tender scope is 12.7 kilometers long. The Guanlan River runs through Longhua Central Area and Shenzhen North Railway Station Business Center, but meanwhile, as the mother river of Longhua District, it carries several historical relics including Guanlan Old Street and Laowei.
Starting from the extremely fluctuated water level of the Guanlan River, the Blueway construction should be based on water security to build a recreation and dynamic corridor that could showcase history and culture of the district, cultivate cultural creativity and attract trades and business. It is aiming to frame multi-dimensional water safety measures first, further promote the co-existence of Guanlan cultural creativity and waterfront recreation through building a comprehensive recreation route in an organic combination of Guanlan Print Base, historical and cultural tourism and waterfront recreation. With an ultimate goal of building the Guanlan River as the business and cultural center in northern Shenzhen, the planning should take advantage of the Blueway to build slow traffic system, activate public functions, and establish a vibrant waterfront corridor through the high popularity and high utilization of business center. The final goal of Guanlan river passage will be the Central business axis and creative-cultural corridor of Northern Shenzhen.
The Longgang River is located in Longgang District, northeast of Shenzhen. The river originates from the north of the Wutong Mountain and is the mainstream of the Danshui River, a secondary tributary of the Dongjiang River. The tender scope is the entire section of the mainstream of the Longgang River, which is about 21 kilometers long. The mainstream of the Longgang River is connected with the International Low-Carbon City and the advanced manufacturing industrial park, and the river basin as a whole presents a spatial pattern surrounded by mountains and waters.
With the mainline of water, the Blueway construction of the Longgang River is aiming to build it into an innovative ecological corridor rooted in the context of Hakka culture and oriented to a low-carbon future through combining the urban functions of both sides of the river. It means to take advantage of the Blueway and Hakka culture to create a cultural and recreational waterfront landmark, integrate with low-carbon innovation park, wetlands, and forest parks to strengthen the relationship between riverfront space and urban functions, and lastly unite water veins to improve ecological and economic benefits along the river. Ultimately, the planning should focus on shaping and displaying new cultural capitals, contributing to creating a high-quality, diverse and sustainable waterfront development zone in eastern Shenzhen.
The Pingshan River is located in the Pingshan District, the northeast of Shenzhen. It originates from Sanzhou Tianmeihuajian, starting from the intersection of the Sanzhoutian Water and the Biling Water (Chizixiang Bridge) and ending at 100 meters downstream of the Shangyang Sewage Treatment Plant’s outlet. The basin area is 144 square kilometers. The tender scope is the entire section of the mainstream of the Pingshan River, which is about 14 kilometers long. The Pingshan River connects numerous country parks, wetland parks, and city parks from east to west, with good ecological background conditions.
Regarding the ecological character as the cornerstone and featuring red-culture and Hakka cultural heritage, the Blueway construction of the Pingshan River is aiming to build a waterfront with high ecological service function, cultural corridor and landscape recreation route. In the context of the new district, the project means to take advantage of the Blueway to strengthen waterfront public services and reconstruct multiple values of the waterfront, deeply explore cultural resources and create cohesion and identity for the place. Meanwhile, with an overall goal of building the Pingshan River into a waterfront ecological promenade in eastern Shenzhen, the planning should strengthen the connection between the ecological park and recreation space within the Blueway, optimize the waterfront ’slow life’ system, and create an open recreation waterfront space with strong interactions with citizens.
The Guangming Lake is located in Guangming District, northwest of Shenzhen. With a storage capacity of more than 100 million cubic meters, it is one of the two largest reservoirs in Shenzhen and functions as the main water supply and storage to western Shenzhen and even to the whole city. In the future, it will be an important water conservancy hub for Shenzhen to bear the water of the Xijiang River and to ensure dual water sources supply. The perimeter of the water surface line, corresponding to the normal water storage level (59.7 meters), is about 18.4 kilometers. The planning should utilize an integrated approach by primarily focus on Guangming Lake and considering simultaneously important neighboring factors.
The Blueway construction of the Guangming Lake is aiming to construct the lake area into a popular recreation destination that showcases water conservancy construction, equips with sports functions, and integrates rural recreation industries. Based on the resource advantage of abundant water source, the planning should fully consider the balance between water source protection and landscape development, satisfy the needs of the Guangming Science City, combine the lake landscape with outdoor training function, and build an outdoor sports tourism highland. Meanwhile, Guangming Town plus country park could facilitate the tourist industry and be jointly managed with the Blueway. The planning should also explore cultural resources further and complete the recreation industry, to create it into a suburban recreational destination.