SAIGON RIVER FLOATING ISLANDS
Ciudad de Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam
Ho Chi Minh City is finally expanding across the Saigon River and we propose to use this unprecedented opportunity to create the most vibrant and exciting public space in Southeast Asia: an archipelago comprised of 72 “islands” of different sizes, typologies, materials and programs.
One single strategy unifies the Central Plaza and the Crescent Park maximizing the Riverfront in order to enjoy the water and to create a lively sequence of programmatically diverse spaces each of them right by the river. A large winding promenade crosses the Central Canal across the different “islands” with capacity to accommodate large parades and festivals where the promenade will be the stage and the “islands” the different scenarios.
Today’s cities all over the world are rediscovering the value of the waterfront. Historically highly profitable because of the delivery of goods, nowadays leisure and tourism are bringing back the highest attention to the water. Riverfronts are becoming the most valuable part of cities worldwide and Ho Chi Minh City’s riverfront is no exception. Originally established as a small fishing village, the city has grown indebted to its river, the Saigon River. Today the opportunity arises to recover the river’s old life, activity and intensity converting the Central Plaza and the Crescent Park on an environmentally sensitive park comprised of unique “islands” of varied park-program. The archipelago, specifically designed for the unique Vietnamese lifestyle, is fully occupied with a particular program for each “island” while a matrix of detailed events is scattered throughout the site according to a set of rules that warranties a dynamic mixed-use.
OHLAB Team: Paloma Hernaiz, Jaime Oliver, Ramiro Losada, Ana Pereira