Planning To Travel This Year? Check Out Seoul’s Charming Floating Skygarden

In the heart of Seoul, South Korea is a kilometre-long area of the disused overpass which has now been converted into an urban nursery. The nursery features more than 24,000 potted plants, trees and shrubs.

Built in 1970 it provided a connection from the Namdaemun market to the East across to various parks in the West. The Namdaemun was the largest traditional market in all of Seoul. However in 2006 extensive safety inspections were had and Seoul deemed the 17-meter high structure unsafe. It was to be demolished and rebuilt but eventually, people were talking, residents as well as city experts.

The new proposed plan was to repurpose the overpass. They decided that it would become a public space and a walkway for pedestrians and the commissioned a competition to the public to design it. MVRDV a Dutch studio won the project. They called this new walkway Seoullo 7017 which translates to ‘towards Seoul’ as well as ‘Seoul Street’.

The 7017 marks the year the overpass was constructed which was 1970 and it’s new function in 2017. The Skygarden is meant to be more than a green space in the centre of Seoul, it’s also designed to be educational. “Skygarden is an educational arboretum, a nursery for future species and one that in the future will act as a garden which can extend to other parts of Seoul as the plants grow and are transferred to new homes”, says Winy Maas, founding partner of MVRDV.

“They are planted in containers of different size and height and organised in groups of families. The families are ordered according to the Korean alphabet. This leads to surprising spatial compositions”. The Seoullo 7017 was designed to have a collection of small gardens.

Each small garden would have its own composition, identity, colour and perfume. Their landscapes would change according to the seasons. Bright colours of autumn of the Aceraceae family (maples), the rhododendron and cherry trees and their blossoms in Spring, and the conifer trees in winter which remain evergreen and the fruit bearing trees in the Summer.

Seoul has a beautiful patch of nature and serenity in a bustling city.