Company Profile: Turenscape

Qunli Stormwater Park. Photo credit: Turenscape

Landscape Architects Network Features a Company Profile of Turenscape. Turenscape is one of the biggest landscape architectural firms in the world. Based in Beijing, China, it boasts about 600 professionals, including architects, engineers, urbanists, and biologists. The company provides global services in architecture, landscape architecture, urban design and city planning, ecological infrastructure, and green way. If that’s not enough to impress you, it was recently awarded the 2016 ASLA Honor Award for its Quzhou Luming Park in Zhejiang, China, by The American Society of Landscape Architects. This was the last of a sequence of awards started in 2001.

Quzhou Luming Park. Photos courtesy of Turenscape

Quzhou Luming Park. Photos courtesy of Turenscape.


The Concept

Turenscape President Kongjian Yu said he was inspired by the rural village where he grew up when he established the philosophy for this firm, which he founded in 1998 with his wife and a friend. Tu means earth. Ren means people. Turen stands for people and land. Turenscape’s vocation is operating in the landscape without conflicting with nature, but accepting it as it is – the good and the bad. So if a site is prone to flooding because of a river — as happens in Quzhou Luming Park — they let it flood. Or if it’s swampy terrain — as with the Qunli National Urban Wetland — they don’t cover it up.

Qunli Stormwater Park. Photo credit: Turenscape

Qunli Stormwater Park. Photo credit: Turenscape

I have been inspired by traditional Chinese agriculture. That is quite different to traditional Chinese garden design,” Kongjian Yu said. Furthermore, residents are essential to completing the portrait.  “All of my projects are theatrical spaces in which people perform,” he said.

How it Makes the Difference

Turenscape’s work has had an impact on Chinese society and landscape unlike any other. Its popularity is rapidly growing because it takes Chinese culture and traditions into great consideration. China is currently a country where an urgent ecological environment recovery is emerging. The country’s overpopulation has led to overbuilding and a lack of resources: China is home to 1.3 billion people, but it can only support half that population on its own.

The Red Ribbon Park. Credit: Turenscape

The Red Ribbon Park. Credit: Turenscape

Turenscape is making a difference in China because it doesn’t just trust modernization and new technologies. It also embraces a philosophical point of view that works with nature, not against it. It remedies the abundance of concrete that characterizes even China’s modern parks with greenery and paths, demonstrating that urbanization is not always in contrast with nature.  “It’s transformative and curative,” was the jury comment on Turenscape’s The Red Ribbon project.
Landscape-architecture - The Red Ribbon Park. Credit: Turenscape

The Red Ribbon Park. Credit: Turenscape

Ecological Infrastructures

Nature is considered a safe model in opposition to non-sustainable and expensive infrastructures. Today, people depend on highways, aqueducts, streets, and other services that are not ecological, and they seem to forget that nature can often provide better benefits for free. That’s why, for instance, Kongjian Yu speaks aboutecological infrastructure” when referring to water: Water is not merely H2O; it’s a living system connected with vegetation, food, life. And architecture can’t even begin to control it. Rediscovering the ecological significance of natural elements as part of not only Chinese but of all human life, is the gift everyone receives from Turenscape.

Floating Garden by Turenscape

Floating Garden. Credit: Turenscape

Characteristic Elements

Turenscape expertly designs social spaces where human presence brings projects to life, helping people to regain possession of the places. The team masters linear and clear shapes in graceful compositions: Paths and bridges are elegant and delicate in a way only Eastern cultures can achieve. The designers often insert insight into the projects: Important elements emerge in the area, not just as points of view, but also as reference points in the immense landscape. Colors are important, too, especially red, which contrasts well with greenery. Red symbolizes fire, energy, and good luck and is often used in traditional Chinese ceremonies.

Incredible scenes created at the Floating Garden; credit: Turenscape

Incredible scenes created at the Floating Garden; credit: Turenscape

Leader in Change

Do you believe in Turenscape’s ideas? Would you like to work there? We encourage you to apply! The firm promotes research and education and allows young talent from around the world to intern at its offices. It hosts about 30 interns each year. Being part of a multidisciplinary team must be an amazing experience, as dealing with 360-degree competencies is a rare opportunity to discover the architectural process in its entirety and from other professionals. Chinese landscape is really changing, and Turenscape is leading the way.

Qunli Stormwater Park. Photo credit: Turenscape

Qunli Stormwater Park. Photo credit: Turenscape

Direct Information for Turenscape:

Office Name: Turenscape Founders: Kongjian Yu Principal Designer: Kongjian Yu Year of Foundation and Location: 1998, Beijing Address: Innovation Center, Peking University Science Park, 127-1 Zhongguancun North Street, Haidian District, Beijing P.R.China, 100080 Website: E-mail Contact: Social Networks: Facebook, LinkedIN More Turenscape Projects:

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