Beijing2008: Green Olympics
by Jinglan Wang

Strategies to Improve Environmental Condition

Project 3: Olympic Green-Beijing Olympic Forest Park: An Axis to Nature



  • The Olympic Green located on the north end of the central axis, occupies an area of 1135 hectares. It contains13 venues and a forest park of 680 hectares at the back. It will be the center for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games and the largest comprehensive community of Beijing after Olympics with Multi-functional, combining business and trade, office, exhibition, sports, exposition and entertainment.
  • The ecological benefits of this man-made park will take time to develop, but the park will help clean up the air as well as providing "a green backdrop" for the Games.
  • It will be the largest city park in Beijing opened to the public after Olympics.

International bidding for the design of the Olympic Forest Park was launched in 2003, attracting 51 submissions from 12 nations. Hu Jie and Sasaki Associates Inc jointly won the top award.


The Green System planning of Beijing

Design Concept

  • The core landscape area is 5 km long walk-able axis representingChinese culture of 5 thousand years. It contains two majorvenues-National Stadium (Bird nest) and National Aquatics (Water Cube).
  • The forest park is an extension of the historical central Axis, and leading it into nature.
  • The park is separated into two parts by the fifth ring road. The north part is the ecological restoration and preservation area, the south part i s the mountain-lake area with Hockey Field (temporary), Arche ry Field (temporary) and Tennis Center. 

(Source: Urban Planning & Design Institute, Tsinghua University)

Ecological Design of Constructed Wetland:

The Olympic Park is intended to become a demonstration project for innovative, sustainable solutions to be applied in regions coping with water problems.













The Plan of Beijing "Olympic Green"
(Source: )




The water system of Beijing Olympic Forest Park
(Source: )

The water system of Beijing Olympic Park consists of three parts: Lake (28.5ha); stream and canal (36ha); artificial wetland. The major water source of this large artificial lake is from Tsing River. In order to reduce the high density of nitrogen and phosphorus, it is designed a 15.28ha constructed wetland system.

Constructed wetland water treatment system

  • Subsurface Flow (Vertical Flow Wetland): keep the water level below the top of the rock or gravel media, thus minimizing ecological exposure directing water through a bed of limestone. More efficiency ---Waste water treatment
  • Surface Flow Wetland (SFW): water flows above ground—cascading wetland, aquatic vegetation pool, bio-pool

The section of Artificial Wetland Design(Source: )


Ecological Bank (Source: )



Ecological Corridor (Source: )

Since the Forest Park is divided by the Fifth Ring Road, ecological corridors (60m wide/ 200ft,180m long,8m high, 2-3m soil layer), were built to link the two parts and to enable the natural movement of birds and other animals.


Next: Project 4

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Green Urbanism and Ecological Infrastructure || Instructor, Jack Ahern

Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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