In addition, a portion of the structure of the second basement level below has been exposed with a glass floor, allowing people to further understand the history of the site and appreciate the former mall as an important part of Tainan’s history.
This new way of preserving heritage meant that the site was not cleared and renewed in a tabula rasa approach – instead the foundations of the former mall stick out of the park and the lagoon like a contemporary Roman Forum, offering a visual marker of the historical decision to close a port in favour of a mall.
A key part of MVRDV’s strategy for Tainan Spring was to bring the greenery to the city.
As a result, both the public square and Haian Road see the introduction of large areas of planting, which makes use of local plant species mixed together in a way that emulates the natural verdant landscape located to the east of Tainan, with trees, shrubs, and grasses providing multiple layers of vegetation.
The density of these plant beds varies in response to the shop frontages, providing more space for people where needed and for plants in between.
Now that construction is complete, the design will take another two to three years to be fully realised as the freshly planted beds gradually grow into the lush garden that was envisioned.