Culture designer interview – Head of Jeju Urban Regeneration Center—Lee Seung-taek

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From Hyangsadang to Ko’s house, Jeju original center of the city starts up

The Ogeri( five-way intersection) is the hope of the city.
The district should solve the urban regeneration problem by itself.
From Hyangsadang to Ko’s house,the Urban Regeneration Center exist because of the communication between the communities.

Culture reporter: Lee Jae-jeong, Translate by: Kim Yae-seol(Justin Ferrell)


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Most of the intersections are made artificially because of rapid urbanisation.
We can feel the fun of living from three-way and five-way interactions.
Lee Seung-taek is running around, creating new life in rebuilt neighborhoods, redolent with the lives and vitality of the people who live in them. This man’s streets link the world.
Today, we interviewed the head of the Jeju Urban Regeneration Center, Mr. Lee Seung-taek (48).

 

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Q:  The first question is something I’ve always wanted to ask: Why do you want to regenerate the city?
A:  I want to prevent the old downtown area from being hollowed out. I want to invigorate the depressed economy too.

Q: Can you fulfill both of the goals at the same time? It is not easy to invigorate the economy.
A:  It will work if we change the structure of this urban space through changes to both working and housing facilities, not to mention the industrial structure.

Q: What kind of benefits will local residents get?
A:  We can lift the economic depression caused by deteriorating buildings and decrease the population.

Q: Do you have any detailed examples?
A:  What kind of profit we can expect from changing an old theatre into a world museum?
Remodelling an old hospital into a complex for exhibitions and cultural events?  complex culture space?
Won’t people come when the old residential houses and motels become museums and the village shrine is reopened? Samdo 2-dong is an good example.
It needs time for the profits to become apparent. Some old sections of the city have been so poorly redeveloped that all of the local homes disappeared completely.
I have seen lots of tragedies like this. With regeneration, however, we make sure that Jeju’s cultural, economic, and residential areas are not destroyed.

Q: The “five old Jeju downtown” that people from the cities of Ningbo and Nara wanted to visit are the places that have histories. Can you talk more about this?
A:  Samdo-dong, 2 do-dong, and Ildo-dong preserve “modern cultural heritages” while the city regenerates. We can find stories of preservation and excavation.
Moreover, the “old historical modern structures are remodeled”. I hope you can visit those places when you are traveling Jeju.
Don’t the governments of Ningbo and Nara use regional cultural spaces to make the locals feel proud of the places they are living?
I hope Jeju can become a healthy city which has sustainable development.

 

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Mr.Lee has succeeded in the village culture business. We hope him all the best in making Jeju a better city by building cultural spaces.