Foster + Partners Chosen to Design Hong Kong Cultural District

Foster + Partners has bested Rocco Design Architects Limited and Office for Metropolitan Architecture in the competition to design the 99-acre masterplan for Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District, the harborfront arts and culture hub that is being funded by the government. Dubbed “City Park,” Foster + Partners’ carbon-neutral masterplan “sets the cultural buildings as the jewels in a new urban quarter” alongside a 57-acre public park. “City Park will be the catalyst to transform the city locally and regionally, as well as on the world stage,” said Norman Foster in a statement issued Thursday. “Our design is rooted in Hong Kong’s urban DNA, the distinctive character that makes it such a dynamic city. There really is no other project like it!” A panel of local professionals and culture vultures based their selection of City Park on six criteria, including how it addressed planning design principles, design and phasing flexibility, technical strengths and weaknesses, and financial implications. The next step in the megaproject is the preparation of a detailed development plan that will be unveiled to the public later this year before submission to the local planning board. Individual features of the other two shortlisted concepts may make their way into the final plan, according to the planning committee, “if they are technically feasible and financially viable with due regard to the integrity of the preferred option.”