Jeju Island Jusangjeolli Living Heritage

Location: Jeju Island, South Korea
Status: Competition Runner-up
Date: 2018
With: HLD Landscape

Designed in collaboration with South Korean landscape architecture office HLD, this invited competition proposal tells the many-layered story of one of Jeju Island’s most important heritage sites, the Jusangjeolli columnar jointing area, where a forest of polygonal basalt columns formed when molten lava flowed into the sea and cooled under particular conditions. Through a mix of evocative landscaped zones, and a set of complimentary pavilions, the project reveals the history of the spectacular geological formations, the island’s volcanic origins, its pine forests and ancient mythology, local fishing traditions and agricultural practices, recent scientific research, and the impact tourism culture.

Vistors to the park would move through a series of highly evocative landscapes. Fields of volcanic gravel related to the area’s famous dry-stone windbreak walls. Agricultural areas, planted in resilient native species of coastal meadow, would tell of the history of the islands agricultural practices and settlement patterns. In other areas, soil is scraped away to reveal the underlying volcanic clinker, displaying the flow of magma from a nearby volcanic cone. Near the coastline, where there is enough soil, the island’s characteristic pine trees are re-established. All these landscapes are supported by a set of complimentary pavilions, which offer places of rest and shelter, or exposure and adventure, infrastructure for practical use, and places to gather.

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Viewing Platforms

Lightweight platforms made of stainless steel grating over rough clinker, and textured concrete on flatter ground, expand the experience of visitors right up to the edge of the basalt formations, and create opportunities to gather in groups as well as enjoy the view in solitude.

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Cultural Experience Zone

Further inland, the relationship between the island’s geology and centuries of human inhabitation is revealed, in an partly sunken pavilion that provides a gather space for public talks and performances.

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Geological Exploration Zone

At the site’s eastern gateway, a ranger pavilion with a rooftop lookout provides a base for park staff, sho will provide guided tours of the site’s more sensitive areas.

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Wave Cove

Where the ocean waves meet a cove in the cliffs, they are focused into an impressive spray of water, which is further amplified by the polished concrete canopy of the wave cove. The experience here focuses on the lives of the Haenyeo, the women divers of Jeju Island, who dive without oxygen tank, well into their 80’s, to gather shellfish like abalone and urchins.

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Neobaegii Market:

Over the years, the park has provided a space for local villagers to sell their crafts and produce. A set of market pavilions at the park entrance, in close proximity to the ticket and information stations, provide a permanent link between the villagers and the park. These pavilions are inspired by the informal market stalls found all over South Korea, providing lockable storage space, plumbing and electricity, and a lightweight roof.

The site pavilions are a cohesive family with a similar construction logic, but depending on the location will have different material character.

The site pavilions are a cohesive family with a similar construction logic, but depending on the location will have different material character.

See the full competition panels:

Nicolas Koff