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Architects transform an airport runway into a gorgeous park

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The 12-foot-long strip of concrete running through a new park in Shanghai is one clear remnant of the land’s previous and radically different life. Originally laid in 1948, this line of concrete was once part of a long, flat runway for the city’s Longhua Airport. After it closed in 2011 and a district-scale urban redevelopment project began rising along its edges, the concrete runway went from being a crucial piece of transportation infrastructure to a vast and seemingly useless relic.

[Photo: Insaw Photography]What’s risen in its place over the past decade is a new central park for the emerging urban district along the Huangpu River. Designed by the landscape architecture and planning firm Sasaki, Xuhui Runway Park has replaced the airport’s footprint while keeping its history alive. “We intentionally preserved this row of concrete,” says Dou Zhang, director of Sasaki’s Shanghai office, “to remember the past but also reuse the old material.”

This is one of the latest examples of outdated transportation infrastructure being reborn into lively public spaces. New York’s High........

© Fast Company

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