Voyeur et Voyage
“Voyeur. With your eyes, do not intervene. Voyage. Enjoy en route.”
What if a city could consistently reconfigure itself, beyond the scope of mandatory brandings? The extent of crisis perpetuates contemplation on the urban landscape. When the urban fabric reflects its incapability of recovery, nature identifies its power of healing. For the wild does not remove the unwanted, it instead overlaps marks and merges as one. There is not a need of manpower for its update and sustain, history is written on its skin. "Our new conceptions must design landscape along with both accepted and disturbing elements, both harmonious and interrupting ones. The result is a metamorphosis of landscape without destroying existing features, an archetypal dialogue between tame and wild"
The Mount Davis Battery, located at the top of the westernmost hill of Hong Kong Island, are historically significant artifacts of Hong Kong’s defence system during WWII. The battery site and surrounding landscape is richly layered: a mashup of old and new structures, planned and unplanned vegetation, varied forms of space and microclimate, and an active geology. The Jockey Club Mount Davis Youth Hostel, just below the site brings visitors from around the world and shall be considered in regard to the program of the interventions.
This project aims to propose a strategy for healthy cultivation, a site that denies human’s intervention and preserves the state of ideal biodiversity. With an elevated walkway that intervenes completely along the terrain, the site's programming intertwines and shifts en route its peak. "Voyeur" along the suspension creates a series of surges and turns, ramps that hangs around batter turnabouts and blending topographies, the walkway is supported by cantilever strategies and mesh canopies technique referenced to Cedric Price's London aviary.
By proposing steel mesh coverings, the site is welcome to vertical vegetations a vast biodiversity in time. Similar to the idea of third landscape (see below), the abandoned bunkers and batteries are left in no use, in order to redefine heritage structures, the landscape surrounding are taken over and ultimately leading the site back to nature.
The Third Landscape – an undetermined fragment of the Planetary Garden -designates the sum of the space left over by man to landscape evolution – to nature alone. Included in this category are left behind urban or rural sites, transitional spaces, neglected land, swamps, moors, peat bogs, but also roadsides, shores, railroad embankments, etc. To these unattended areas can be added space set aside, reserves in themselves: inaccessible places, mountain summits, non-cultivatable areas, deserts; institutional reserves: national parks, regional parks, nature reserves.
Compared to the territories submitted to the control and exploitation by man, the Third Landscape forms a privileged area of receptivity to biological diversity. Cities, farms and forestry holdings, sites devoted to industry, tourism, human activity, areas of control and decision permit diversity and, at times, totally exclude it. The variety of species in a field, cultivated land, or managed forest is low in comparison to that of a neighbouring «unattended» space.
From this point of view, the Third Landscape can be considered as the genetic reservoir of the planet, the space of the future…
Clément, Gilles. 2003. Manifest du Tiers paysage
More at Landscape Theory
Project by Bvyn
Year: Spring Summer 20
Location: Mount Davis, Hong Kong
Program: Landscape Preservation
Elevation: 883 ft