CLADmag issue3 2019

Page 5


W H AT LI E S BEN E AT H Around the world, obsolete quarries

are being transformed from dangerous eyesores to inspiring destinations –

providing new ideas for transforming


particularly challenging brownfield sites n this issue, we interview Martin Jochman, the architect behind the InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland – a luxury hotel located almost 90m below ground in an abandoned quarry just outside Shanghai.

When Jochman (then working for Atkins) won

the commission to design a new hotel as part of

a large commercial and residential scheme with the

old quarry at its heart, he was given a height limit of just 25 metres – the developers Shimao were determined to minimise the impact of the building on the surrounding landscape. Jochman suggested something

The InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland, a ‘symbolic idea’ of what can be done with abandoned quarries

long time, but thanks to a huge investment it’s in

the process of being turned into a destination greenspace. Miron Quarry in Montreal

– formerly a limestone quarry and then

a little radical – why not build the

one of Canada’s largest landfill sites – is

hotel into the quarry itself?

currently being turned into “something

It wasn’t an easy solution – the project

like New York’s Central Park,” according

team were faced with challenges

to Laure Waridel of environmental NGO

including the difficulties of transporting

building materials down into the quarry, the risk of flooding and rockfall and the

need to ensure it was earthquake resistant. The

results are pretty impressive though – an 18-storey hotel

Équiterre (speaking to Montreal CTV news). A

hugely ambitious environmental rehabilitation

project, Parc Frédéric-Back has already opened on

the 153-hectare site on top of the old city dump, with work

with16 storeys underground (two storeys of which are

ongoing to continue to transform it into a major outdoor

aquarium), built with passive sustainability at its heart.

a circus centre. Elsewhere, quarries are being turned into

underwater, with some guests suites looking out onto an “There was no precedent to this building,” says Jochman.

“It’s become a symbolic idea of what can be done.”

Once depleted of their resources, quarries are often left

abandoned where they might fill with rainwater or be used

attraction with sports and cultural facilities, bike paths and wildlife habitats, parks, mixed-use housing districts, water

management systems and more, while Martin Jochman is

investigating the feasibility of further quarry reuse projects. Abandoned quarries can be a depressing blight

as landfills; they can become dangerous, polluted eyesores.

for communities. These projects provide new ideas

extensively in CLADmag, there are a range of interesting

result in facilities which benefit communities and

Although it’s not something we’ve covered

quarry projects taking shape across the world.

In Atlanta, Bellwood Quarry – an obsolete 100-year-old

granite quarry – has been an eyesore for residents for a

+44 (0)1462 431385


for transforming challenging sites and will hopefully lessen the environmental impact of quarrying. Magali Robathan, managing editor, CLAD




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