MINI SHANGHAI: The Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center

Today’s my last day in China. The workshop ended yesterday and I took a high speed train to Shanghai to explore the city. Yesterday I walked around the city for most of the day and accidentally stumbled into  the Jing’an Sculpture Park, which has sculptures by Jaume Plensa, Arne Quinze and a host of other internationally famous sculptors. The sculptures themselves are fine, but the park itself is spectacular; elegant water features, nice views of the city, cats, and boatloads of women doing choreographed group exercise dancing.

This morning I woke up and walked to the Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center on a tip from a friend. If you like models this is the place for you. The upper levels of the building showcase ancient China through diorama-style models, many of which have holographically-projected scale figures (!) doing various things. Other models show future, planned developments like airports and transit stations. For me the most exciting thing was the model of ALL of Shanghai on the third floor. The model reflects the vision of Shanghai for 2020. It features all of current Shanghai with a few approved interventions for the future peppered in. Apparently they update the model monthly with new buildings and demolitions. There is a walkway around the perimeter of the model and a mezzanine area on the fourth floor that allows for views from above. I was walking around the model, watching it change as it’s internal illumination and the overhead lights flicked on and off, when I stumbled across the Expo site from a few years ago. Check it out below: mini Heatherwick and Tagliabue and Ingles ,oh-my!




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