Seosomun History Park
Location: Seosomun History park, Seoul, South Korea
Site Area: 24,077.57 ㎡
Building area: 2,557.10 ㎡
Total floor area: 8,850.54 ㎡
Building coverage: 11.52 %
Exterior finish: Granite, Wood deck, Low-E glass
Landscape area: 14,826.72 ㎡
There has been various flows around Seosomun historically. The area went through all the paths of Korean history as a main gateway for the people, a path to welcome Chinese envoy for the King of Korean Dynasty, an execution ground to punish national criminals, a sad place of religious martyrdom for early catholic, an Gyeong-Ui Line connecting across Korean peninsula with the construction of Seoul railroad station after civilization, and a symbol of another sad history by disconnection with Pyeong-ui Line by divison of Korean peninsula. After division, there had been a chance to be used a popular public space by development of Seosomun park, but it couldn’t be achieved successfully due to the separation from the city by the construction of Seosomun skyway and Uiju-ro underpass. Another trial to be transformed into a cultural core of the region couldn’t be successful again by the same reason, and there exists several flower salers, Catholic Martyrs Park and numerous homeless people around the site area.
We are trying to focus on those historical and physical flows around the site. Those will be converged and combined into the site, flow around and through it and will flow out of the site. The location, once people gathered around to see someone’s death with cangue is now reconsidered as a center point of new culture of the region. Linear stone floor patterns converging into the underground central plaza will provide calm resting space separated from the busy urban life by placing them onto the historical level digged up from the site. The events and programs around the central plaza will have flexibility by sharing the central space by occasional demands. The radial floor pattern consisted with wood deck, stone pavement, linear green on the ground is continuing all around corner of the park. The linear green will be transformed into bigger green plates, ventilation grills, skylights, event spaces, street furniture per the program requirements below when these are enlarged at some points.
Seosomun park is always welcoming you wherever you come from. You can walk on the wood and stone paths along next to flower bed and talk with people on the bench with tree shades. After a good conversation, you walk and meet a central circular plaza below unexpectedly which looks like to show you the hidden layers of the history. You decide to participate in Catholic mass in the church, and look around some exhibition about the region and history of Catholic in Korea. Before going back home, you have a nice lunch with hot tea while looking down some cultural event in the central plaza. The new Seosomun park with extensive view will provide a safe public venue with various stories at every corner in it.