Shanghai, China

2023-09-28 15:18:41

"Century-old Zhangyuan and its journey of renewal"



  • Population size: 24,894,300
  • Population Growth Rate(%):0.80  
  • Surface Area ( 6340.5
  • Population Density (people/ 3926


The renovation and development of the Zhangyuan area aim to present the high-specification and multi-faceted Shikumen culture in its original fashion. This goal is achieved through the restoration and protective renovation of the historical buildings with the philosophy of “repairing the old as the old” and adding necessary infrastructure.


A multi-dimensional comprehensive plan has been devised to take advantage of the historical significance of Zhangyuan as “the No.1 Park of Shanghai”. According to said plan, an interconnected three-dimensional system of skywalks, North Maoming Road Pedestrian Street and underground space will be built to enhance the pedestrian experience. Multiple venues including an art museum and a performance arts center will also be established to form a cultural hub for the residents. At the same time, the commercial sector will further cultivate the theme of Shanghainese culture and develop brand new commercial function and format through its leading fashion consumption experiences, and transform the area into the most influential and reputable commercial district of downtown Shanghai.



Relevant Policies include: “The Implement Method of Revitalizing Existing City Industrial Land”, “Four Action Plans for ‘12+X’ Urban Renewal”, “Opinions on Upholding the ‘Retain, Renovate, Demolish’ Approach and Deepening Organic Urban Renewal to Further Improve Living Conditions of Citizens”, “Shanghai Urban Renewal Guidelines”



The life quality of Zhangyuan residents is heavily impacted by the issues arising from old buildings. Even with several extensive renovations, there were limited improvements to residents’ living conditions because of the constraints of the circumstances. For example, There were more than 500 resident households without a restroom. Consequently, almost half of these buildings were put up for low-end leasing, which resulted in further damage to the Zhangyuan buildings. As such, local residents have a strong desire for renewal.


(a)The initiative is designed to transform Zhangyuan area from a residential area into the most influential commercial district in the heart of Shanghai that consists of a rich cultural and commercial experience such that citizens can perceive the practical results of high-quality development, high-quality life and high-efficiency governance in this area. (b)The protective renovation of the historical buildings in the area started on September 30, 2018. The east section of the project opened on December 1st, 2022. The construction is projected to be finished in 2026 in its entirety.


(a)To ensure the proper protection of the buildings after businesses move in, the Jing’an District Party Committee and Jing’an District Government required a team of experts to provide a building-specific list containing all elements of the renovated building that cannot be altered. Any special modifications by future businesses will require expert review and approval. (b)To ensure the success of urban renewal, the project team has collaborated with relevant city departments to carry out policy and system adjustments and developments in areas such as planning, approval, investment and financing. The team has also expanded the financing mechanisms in a diverse manner to gather funds for urban renewal. They have also improved the participation mechanisms through which residents, enterprises and social organizations can participate in urban renewal and protective



Swire Properties was chosen as the partner for Zhangyuan management in December 2020. In July 2021, Shanghai Jing'an Real Estate Group and Swire Properties signed a joint venture agreement to establish a property management company for Zhangyuan and hold 40% and 60% of the company respectively. Together, both parties leverage their strengths in the partnership to advance the project, with the aim of transforming Zhangyuan into a new international cultural and commercial landmark in the heart of



Shanghai Jing’an Real Estate Group is actively expanding its financing mechanisms in a diverse manner to raise its urban renewal fund. The group has formed a consortium of banks for the construction of the project. At the same time, efforts for overall integration and coordination have been made: the District Party Committee and District Government have set up Zhangyuan Management Committee and, the Zhangyuan Urban Renewal Party-building Alliance to enhance area collaboration. A complete management model has been built to ensure the mechanics of future management.



The initiative should be considered evolutionary. As more and more emphasis was put on the protection of Shanghainese history and culture, there were new requirements for the preservation and renewal of the Zhangyuan area. In other central urban areas, the transformation of old districts follows the philosophy of ‘retain, renovate, demolish’ approach, making Zhangyuan’s preservation and development a pioneer in this field. Shanghai Jing’an Real Estate Group has innovated mechanisms, improved policies, and utilized resources flexibly to organically combine historical heritage preservation and city functionality improvements with enhanced spatial quality. With the philosophy of organic renewal and overall protection, the group gradually advances urban renewal efforts.



A building-specific management guide has been established in the progression of the project for each of the 174 buildings within the Zhangyuan area, which has become a city-wide standard for protective renovation. The city government is now implementing this standard in other urban renewal projects. With the goal of a green, healthy, energy-efficient and environment-friendly outcome in mind, the project aims to achieve 2 stars in the Green Building Label Standard and a platinum level in the WELL Building Standard.


The data they use include the energy efficiency of windows; the type of building materials they use; the type of water delivery devices and drinking water quality; energy efficiency of air conditioning, lighting and transformers among other things. These data are reported to respective certification agencies such that their project is certified as using green or energy-efficient materials or devices. For example, they have passed the GB/T18883 standard for indoor air quality, the GB 50034 efficiency standard for building lighting design and so on.


The innovation of the project focuses on the historical building protection area of Zhangyuan.

There are 1125 households that are relocated in the process of urban renewal. They now enjoy improved quality of life in their new homes.



Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all ages 

Goal 6: Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

Goal 8: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all 

Goal 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation 

Goal 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable