NEWS|WEMECHINA wined IFLA AAPME Honor Awards 2022: Wetland Conservation Design Based on NbS and Climate Change Adaptation


NEWS|WEMECHINA wined IFLA AAPME Honor Awards 2022: Wetland Conservation Design Based on NbS and Climate Change Adaptation

Ecological Restoration of the Mudflats Along the Wuhui Embankment of the Yangtze



IFLA AAPME Awards 2022—Built ProjectsWildlife, Biodiversity, Habitat Enhancement or Creation HM


IFLA AAPME Awards 2022 - “CLIMATE CRISIS DESIGN” is an international design award organised by the International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) Asia Pacific region (APR), in collaboration with IFLA Africa and Middle East regions. This year the award continues to call for climate actions and our response in climate crisis design. This award program directly references to the IFLA Climate Action Commitment, ratified by IFLA APR and many other associations across the regions. It is also our commitment to demonstrate where landscape architects are delivering on our commitment and achieving tangible actions through the program.



In 1955, Wuhan Iron and Steel Group started construction on the south bank of the Yangtze River in Wuhan, and with it, the riverside wharves were set up, burning coal was abandoned on the Yangtze River mudflats, and the original wetland mudflats were hardened with a large amount of cement into dumps, which greatly damaged the original ecological environment.

After the local government realized the importance of ecological environment in 2018, it quickly launched ecological protection and restoration along the Yangtze River. With nature-based solutions and adaptation to climate change as countermeasures, the soil in the site was first tested, various types of solid waste were cleaned up, and then the cement-hardened ground in the site was broken up. Wetland restoration was carried out on the mudflat wetlands in the key treatment area, which thoroughly improved the ecological environment of the project site.





Design Ideas

The main content of the project is to remediate a large amount of industrial slag, coal, household garbage, construction waste in the beach outside the Wuhui dike and the Minwan, comprehensive flood control needs of the Yangtze River and solid waste transfer to produce new hidden dangers and other specific situations, the implementation of the point to maintain the original state and supplemented by ecological re-greening construction, set up a groundwater monitoring wells, monitoring, prevention and control of groundwater pollution at any time.



Design Strategy-NbS

To give priority to nature, respect nature, strengthen the protection of natural resources, deal with slag and construction waste in the site according to local conditions, retain the wild features of the urban countryside, to create an ecological mudflat with natural wilderness different from the urban landscape.




Innovation points and features

For the new set of dock underground buried industrial slag, invited experts from the Chinese Academy of Environmental Sciences to conduct an ecological safety assessment, comprehensive flood control needs of the Yangtze River and the transfer of solid waste to produce new hidden dangers and other specific situations, the implementation of the site to maintain the original state and supplemented by ecological rehabilitation construction, to create a wild ecological mudflat wetlands, so that the site is more resilient to rain and flooding.



Classification and comprehensive use 

The harmful slag and garbage in the site are cleaned up, and the topography is created for the harmless part of construction discard and hard foundation of the site that can be used to form a natural topographic skeleton. Fully consider the hydrological conditions, water flow direction, divide the arboreal area and wet area of the site class, and build the unique beach habitat system of rainwater, flooding and plants of the site by constructing the seasonal water treatment design of the site such as water storage area and drainage ditch.



Forests where appropriate, grasses where appropriate

In the planting design of the re-greening, following the principle of "nature first, ecology-oriented, highlighting the wild, minimum intervention, combining near and far", according to the current situation of the site resources, combined with the construction of sponge city, with protection as the premise, to maintain the stability of the ecosystem, protect and restore ecological functions and biodiversity as the basic starting point, through moderate Through moderate artificial intervention, protection and restoration measures, forestry as appropriate, grass as appropriate, and restoration of natural ecological appearance. By planting plants that can withstand drought, flooding, scouring and soil fixation, the ground cover is mainly fast-growing dogbane, which fixes the soil, and locally dotted with purple flowering groundnuts and dandelions to form a flowering meadow. The use of wetland plants native to the wetland red polygonum, moderate amount of irregular point planting pond fir, dry willow, the formation of ecological, wild natural landscape.



Real-time monitoring, long-term management

The relevant departments installed height limit shelves and isolation piers on the road of the embankment to stop large trucks from going to dump the garbage, and patrolled and guarded 24 hours at key intersections. At the same time, groundwater monitoring wells were set up to monitor and prevent and control groundwater pollution at all times.

Outstanding features, ecological and natural

After the implementation of the project, the wild and interesting mudflat wetland has been presented in front of our eyes, and the natural ecological system designed and built has been integrated into the nature, and the idea of "let nature do the work" has been implemented, with birds inhabiting and wild flowers blooming to protect the Yangtze River water body and ecological environment to the greatest extent.




Innovative Technologies

The implementation of the project explored a number of techniques for biodiversity reconstruction after destructive development of the Yangtze River shoreline, including techniques for artificially assisted natural recovery of vegetation; techniques for artificially induced plant diversity enhancement; and a series of techniques for restoration and reconstruction of bird habitats. This has led to a significant increase in biodiversity and landscape value, achieving the multiple purposes of greening, beautifying and protecting, and stabilizing the ecosystem of the Yangtze River shoreline.






Ecological benefits

The implementation of the project will result in a better and more stable regional ecosystem, a more rational internal structure, and a more harmonious complex relationship between biological populations and habitat conditions.

According to Wuhan Biodiversity Survey Report, during the dry period of Wuhui dike, a large area of mudflat is exposed, which provides a habitat for birds, and the riverside provides very rich food, especially loved by black storks, cormorants and Chinese autumn sand ducks, which are mainly fish feeders, and Wuhui dike mudflat has now become an important habitat for birds and a home for animals.





Social benefits

This project is a public welfare social enterprise, and the social benefits it generates are very obvious.

(1) Raising people's awareness of ecological protection

(2) Promote social stability and development and improve people's living environment

(3) Improve visibility and establish a good external image





This is an ongoing ecological restoration project, and relevant departments have set up groundwater monitoring wells to monitor and prevent and control groundwater pollution at all times. After nearly 5 years of continuous ecological protection and restoration, the ecological environment of Wuhuitian mudflats has achieved remarkable results. Ecological functions have been effectively protected, ecological damage has been effectively curbed, ecological environment quality has been greatly improved, and now the Yangtze River Wuhui beachland is rippling with blue waves and green grass, and the solid waste dump has been turned into an ecological oasis.



Design Team: Zhu Liqing, Song Benyun, Chen Chen, etc.

Design departmentWeimei Landscape