The programme is managed by Hangzhou Municipal Government, China.
Qiaoxi Historical District is situated on the west side of the historical Gongchen bridge at the southern end of China’s Grand Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage site. It covers 7.29 hectares that were redeveloped from 2007 to 2010. The project demonstrates its innovation through heritage preservation, recreation programming and the provision of learning opportunities.
Before the project, it was a slum, full of bankrupt or empty factories, laid off or retried workers, old houses and badly-maintained public facilities. Following a government-initiated redevelopment project, it is now a liveable community for 292 original households who moved into renovated apartments or townhouses.
It is a popular destination for recreation and heritage appreciation providing free access to five national museums (i.e., The China Knives, Scissors and Swords Museum, China Umbrella Museum, China Fan Museum, the Arts and Crafts Museum, and the Workmanship Demonstration Pavilion). These museums are housed in abandoned factories and warehouses. They display and perpetuate the host city’s arts and crafts. This district also possesses three traditional Chinese medical stores, creative arts and book stores, as well as restaurants and cafes.
Distinctive from many other leisure sites worldwide, Qiaoxi district is well-known for its learning opportunities. Visitors can participate in embroidery, pottery, silk and paper umbrella making, leather carving, paper cutting, stone and wood carving, carpentry and other DIY activities supervised by experienced craftspeople.