Seoul as Landscape System

Wybe Kuitert analyses in this article how the early historical settlement and development of Seoul, which started in the 1390s, had a strong connection with the natural landscape, and how this is still readable in the landscape. Particularly Seoul’s rolling hills were favourable and secure places to live.

In contrast many water-induced areas and flood plains were quickly urbanised in the 1970s. It is in such areas that fatalities have occurred during the serious floods in recent times. By providing case study examples the author illustrates how an understanding of the landscape systems and their reinterpretation can assist with strengthening identity and a sense of place, and the development of a sound ecological urban landscape.

The text was originally published in Topos, The International Review of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design, Vol. 73, December 2010. The Pdf version of the text is republished with the kind permission of Wybe Kuitert.

Prof Dr Wybe Kuitert lectures at the Department of Landscape Architecture of the Graduate School of Environmental Studies, Seoul National University, Korea.

The Pdf of the article can be download here (7.4 MB): Article download.

A translation to Chinese of the article has been made available by Youth Chsla, the Chinese Youth Landscape Architecture organisation. Here a link to the Chinese language version of the article.

Text by Jan Haenraets

Jan Haenraets is a Director of Atelier Anonymous Landscapes Inc., Vancouver, BC, Canada

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