Is There Really an Airport Exclusively for Birds?

Is There Really an Airport Exclusively for Birds?

Every year northern China sees approximately 50 million birds make the return journey from the Arctic Circle, through East and South-east Asia, to Australia and New Zealand. Despite the large volumes of birds seeking refugee, continuous coastal urbanization has caused a decrease in habitat space for the birds and is making it difficult for birds to find a resting spot before venturing on with the rest of their journey. Luckily, a new plan aims to not only create a sanctuary for the migratory birds but also provide a new green space for the city of Tianjin.

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The city of Lingang held a contest for architects to submit designs that transformed a landfill site into pockets of wetland, parkland, and an urban forest along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (EAAF). 

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Landscape architecture firm McGregor Coxall won the competition with their proposal for a Bird Airport. They suggested redesigning the landfill into a space that would allow the mass amount of migrating birds a place to breed and pilgrimage for food. The space would be divided into three different water habitats - an island lake, a reed zone, and mudflats. Each area will cater to the more than 50 species of birds that visit the area. So for example, there will be open water for waterbirds and perching posts, and a perimeter edge wetland for wetland species.

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To keep the birds protected from intrusion and nearby urban development, A 20-hectare fringing forest will surround the wetlands.  

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In addition to providing a sanctuary for birds, the area will allow visitors to observe the birds through camera's strategically placed inside 14 bird hides and a raised observation pod that puts visitors in view of the birds flying past. Other public facilities included in the design are wetland trails, a lake loop walk, and a cycle circuit and forest walk, making up a 7 kilometres of paths.

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While construction is slated to begin in 2017 and be completed by 2018, some remain skeptical of the plausibility of the park. Their main concern is that the pollution in the area is too high and that the shallow bodies of water would attract more than just the birds - it would fester some of the worst insects. 


Interested in designing an environmentally friendly space? Search the '3D Model Gallery' on CADdetails.com to download models you can use in your planning.

Sources: Dezeen & McGregor + Coxall

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