The Seoul Metropolitan Government plans to turn the total 938m of the deteriorated elevated road near Seoul Station from a road for cars to a path for people. For the past 45 years, the elevated road has shared the glory and shame of our city. The elevated road will be connected to 17 pedestrian roads through Seoul Station Plaza and the area to the north of Seoul Station.
< Considered historical and future value, new opportunities created through renewal >
The elevated road near Seoul Station was rated D in the safety assessment of the Precision Safety Diagnosis in 2006. Given its high historical value as a legacy of the industrial era in Korea, and a high future value as the starting and terminal point of the Eurasian Railway, the Seoul Metropolitan Government has decided to renew the road to a space where people can relax and take strolls to create new opportunities instead of tearing it down.
The overall renewal plan is to link the city center, within the four gates, to the underdeveloped region to the west of the elevated road near Seoul Station and Seoul Station, the international gateway into Seoul, where over 390,000 people and 75 bus lines pass through every day.
Through this integrated renewal process, the government plans to revive Seoul Station as a “Bridge of communication,” a place where people can gather and gradually disperse into surrounding areas. By connecting and integrating the areas, traffic, and culture in the eastern and the western part of Seoul, which has long been disconnected, this proposal offers a new revival model for the dwindling local economy.
In particular, the construction of 17 pedestrian roads will open a new chapter of ‘walking tourism’ in Seoul’s history by connecting areas popular with tourists, such as Myeong-dong and Namsan, as well as Seoul Station, through history, culture, and shopping. The Seoul Metropolitan Government plans to turn the Seoul Station area into a must-visit tourist attraction in Seoul along with Myeong-dong.
「Seoul Station 7017 Project」 Announced
The Seoul Metropolitan Government announced the “Seoul Station 7017 Project” on January 29. The city government is holding an international contest, from January 29 to April 24, for the submission of construction designs to turn this plan into reality. The number 7017 is significant as it refers to ① the historical elevated road created in 1970 and reborn in 2017, ② the renewal of the elevated road from a road for cars in 1970 to 17 roads for people, and ③ a 17m-high elevated road created in 1970.
The 「Seoul Station 7017 Project」 is largely focused on ▴a significant improvement of the pedestrian environment through the renewal of the elevated road near Seoul Station, ▴ revitalization of Namdaemun Market and promotion of urban renewal, ▴ the remedy and resolution of problems related to communication, traffic, and safety.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government established the Urban Renewal Headquarters to specify the details regarding a new paradigm for urban development called “Seoul-Style Urban Renewal,” instead of tearing down architecture as they had in the past. Regarding the elevated road near Seoul Station, the city government aims to create a role model for urban renewal projects that will trigger the revitalization of the Seoul Station area.
“The elevated road near Seoul Station is an important infrastructure in the history of the city and the lives of the people,” said Seoul Mayor Park Won Soon. He also said, “Instead of tearing it down and building new things, as we had in the past, we are planning on creating new value that will add to the lives of the people through urban renewal. We will pursue this renewal project of the elevated road near Seoul Station, along with our citizens, so that it can become a symbolic example of the changed paradigm for development in Seoul.”