Tides Park ... careful planning led to success

China has long been a Pacific Rim Park partner. They sponsored architecture students at each of PRP's seven previous Pacific Rim Park Projects, and hosted the third Pacific Rim Park which was built in Yantai in 2001. Yantai’s explosive growth in the following years put pressure on the park space, which was built at the time on private land. It was dismantled in 2009 to make way for other development. But with encouragement from the international PRP network and supporters, a new park was announced for 2018 to be built on public park land owned by the city of Yantai.

 

Supporter June Shilman, President of the Yantai Friendship Society, a San Diego-based Sister City organization, played an important role in galvanizing interest and support both in Yantai, China, and in San Diego. She flew overseas several times to meet with the Mayor of Yantai to advocate for a new park. Here in San Diego June is part of an active, tight-knit Chinese community that helped with vital funding in support of PRP’s leadership team. She also brought a group of Americans to Yantai to attend the opening ceremony.

 

The week prior to construction, Korean PRP partners in Jeju Island hosted a meeting for PRP representatives from all seven cities to plan for future cooperation on park projects. Vladivostok sent five Russian PRP alumni to help in the final week of the park construction in Yantai.  Their extra hands helped lay stone pathways and completed the landscaping.

 

The Chinese PRP alumni network was instrumental in helping with day-to-day needs. A key staffer of the Yantai Foreign Affairs Office, Jessica Lee, was a PRP alumni from the previous Yantai park built in 2001. FAO donated the land, paid for building material, covered the cost of housing and food for the students, and oversaw the project from planning, design, and construction.

 

Yantai University provided classroom space and support at their School of Architecture, which boasts two PRP alumni among the professors at the school

 

YANTAI CREDITS

 

On-Site Leadership Team

Kyle Bergman, Marianne Gerdes, Garrett Goodwin, James Hubbell, Chuck Lang

 

Support

Ilan-Lael Foundation

June Shilman, President of the Yantai Friendship Society in San Diego (Yantai's sister city)

Mayor Meng Fanli Yantai

Jessica Lee, Foreign Affairs Office, Yantai

Yantai University School of Architecture

Prof. Seong Jun Ko, Korea

On-site Blogger- Lauren Victor

Alex Mortensen,  filmmaker

 

Behind the Scenes

For a day-by-day account of the experience, see timeandtide.space

Short film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=5&v=RGJi66gPQO0

Marianne Gerdes