Objective Based on the paradigm transformation of China’s urban development stage in the new period, and the orientation adjustment of the landscape architecture discipline, this research aims to expand the landscape architecture body of knowledge oriented to the regeneration of urban built environment, and to further promote the core areas of the landscape architecture body of knowledge based on the practice of landscape planning and design.
Methods At the theoretical level, this research combines field theory and landscape urbanism. Field theory can be regarded as a new model of urban theory, which translates the theoretical framework of field theory into “symbolic space”, “social space”, and “physical space”. Field theory provides a dynamic framework for understanding social structure and power. The elements of “field” for regenerating urban built environment include both material placemaking and non-material urban systems. Landscape architecture needs to expand its body of knowledge in two ways: First, focus on the underlying multidimensional elements; second, explore the operational mechanisms among the elements of urban built environment. Then, this research points out three major shifts in the new paradigm for regeneration of urban built environment: 1) A shift in the perspective of the “field” relationship; 2) a shift in the path of urban regeneration; 3) a shift in the identity of designer. The shift in the perspective of urban regeneration has brought about a new path adjustment, which is specifically divided into three levels, namely regeneration mode, regeneration system and practice dimension. Landscape architecture should play a leading role in urban built environment with the background of urban regeneration, and landscape architects as the main body of design should gradually play the role of coordinator and harmonizer. In practice, relying on the construction of waterfront spaces and the comprehensive improvement of built environment along the Huangpu River and the Suzhou Creek in Shanghai and other major rivers nationwide, as well as a lot of practice in integration and landscaping of urban infrastructure, a “six-dimensional spatial regeneration system” targeting the regeneration of urban built environment has been developed. From the perspective change towards the regeneration of urban built environment, to the path change of urban regeneration, and to the identity change of landscape architect, a positive feedback loop of “macro – meso – micro” realms has been constructed, and the body of knowledge required for landscape architecture has been continuously expanded.
Results This research proposes to, by virtue of the advantages of the landscape architecture discipline, break through professional boundaries, break down departmental barriers, and integrate multiple resources to strengthen the influence of the theoretical and practical levels on the expansion of the landscape architecture body of knowledge, which involves the following six aspects. 1) Systematic knowledge of placemaking. The basic framework for the expansion of the body of knowledge towards the regeneration of built environment is constructed. For spatial construction regarding the regeneration of built environment, it is necessary to combine with urban design thinking to strengthen the comprehensive, holistic, systematic and three-dimensional integration of multiple elements. 2) Cultural knowledge of historical context. The “mixed nature” of built environment is actually the external manifestation of the richness of the city, and in the face of the complex conditions and information of the city, it is a challenging task to sort out and continue the “cultural genes” of the city, and it is necessary to take into account the historical landscape and urban life, and realize the combination of the physical environment and living scenes. 3) Integration knowledge of infrastructure. Under the stock development mode, the integration and landscaping of infrastructure is an important trend in the regeneration of urban built environment, especially in the coupling of urban infrastructure and public space, which can realize multiple benefits. 4) Constructive knowledge of scene nodes. The creation of scene nodes is indispensable for systematic spatial construction, which leads to the comprehensive enhancement of a larger area, so that different nodes together constitute a scene that serves the daily life. 5) Ecological knowledge of environmental restoration. Ecological restoration in high-density built environment faces unique environmental conditions and often faces more constraints, and landscape architecture has great potential in ecological restoration. 6) Artistic knowledge of public space. It suggests to shift from city beautifying by art to city shaping by implementing art, to give full play to the value of landscape architecture in “aesthetic education”, to implement art and culture into daily life, and to improve the quality of urban public space through comprehensive means for spatial construction.
Conclusion Advocating the cross-border design and multidisciplinary integration, the “whole design” concept may help optimize the path for expanding the landscape architecture body of knowledge in the context of paradigm shift, and promote the community of landscape architecture to create new values and paradigms for the regeneration of urban built environment.