Chongqing, China
City population: 31020000
Duration: 2019 – 2019
Implementation status: Completed
Scale: Micro-scale: District/neighbourhood level
Project area: 990000 m2
Type of area: Other
Last updated: November 2021

Tongnan Dafosi Wetland Park is located on both sides of Fu River flowing through the central area of Chongqing Tongnan District. Its south side is right next to the national tourist spot – the Great Buddha Temple (Dafosi). Due to the increasing frequency and severity of extreme rainstorms, the area is prone to floods. To build an urban wetland park that is adaptive to floods, designers retained the original wetland environment along the river channel and set up pedestrian corridors to enable citizens’ close contact with wetland nature. [1, 3] This project excavates two important cultural elements of Tongnan: 1) the shipping culture with a long history; and 2) the Buddhist culture based on the Great Buddha Temple. [1]


Nature-based solution

  • Parks and urban forests
  • Large urban parks or forests
  • Blue infrastructure
  • Rivers/streams/canals/estuaries
  • Wetlands/bogs/fens/marshes

Key challenges

  • Climate action for adaptation, resilience and mitigation (SDG 13)
  • Climate change adaptation
  • Water management (SDG 6)
  • Flood protection
  • Green space, habitats and biodiversity (SDG 15)
  • Habitat and biodiversity restoration
  • Habitat and biodiversity conservation
  • Green space creation and/or management
  • Regeneration, land-use and urban development
  • Promotion of naturalistic urban landscape design
  • Social justice, cohesion and equity (SDG 10)
  • Social cohesion
  • Social interaction
  • Health and well-being (SDG 3)
  • Enabling physical activity
  • Creation of opportunities for relaxation and recreation
  • Cultural heritage and cultural diversity
  • Protection of historic and cultural landscape/infrastructure


Creation of new green areas, Creation of semi-natural blue areas, Maintenance and management of urban nature, Management of rivers and other blue areas, Ecological restoration of degraded ecosystems, Protection of natural ecosystems

Project objectives

The Tongnan Dafosi Wetland Park aimed to innovatively combine wetland protection with urban park development, whilst promoting local culture and building local identity. It uses flood-adaptive design to lower the cost of maintenance while creating spaces for citizens to connect with nature and to conduct various activities. [1, 3] The specific goals of the project include [1]: - Flexible design to be adaptive to floods - Restore habitats for wetland flora and fauna - Increase habitat diversity - Create a vibrant urban living room providing rich experience for the citizens - Preserve local cultural heritage of the shipping and the Buddhist culture, in designing and building the wetland park as well as the installations within the park.

Implementation activities

The main implementation activities of this project include: - Flexible design to be adaptive to floods: maintaining the geographical features of the site to the maximum and use minimum intervention measures; build pedestrian walkways and cycling paths, enabling citizens’ close contacts to wetlands; and allocate the main activity space and facilities in areas that are not prone to be submerged so as to reduce maintenance cost. [1, 2] - Install water pipelines that can, on one hand, direct water from the Fu River into the various wetlands within the Park, supporting the ecosystems, and on the other hand, can water the plants directly during drought season [2] - Restore habitats for wetland flora and fauna: build ecological slope protection, restore the original maple forests and grass vegetation in the islands located in the middle of the river, and increase tree islands to provide habitat for birds. [1] - Increase plant diversity: create an aquatic planting area of about 8,000 square meters for lotus flowers, and create a ground cover planting area of 170,000 square meters for about 50 types of plants such as Jacaranda, Taxodium ascendens, Salix alba, Pink grass, Lotus alba and Fruits. [3] - Create a vibrant urban living room: the park is designed into different functional zones, including sprots and leisure area, urban balcony area, Dafosi Wetland area, etc., which is also equipped with a public bath and several meditation spaces, providing rich experience for the citizens. [1]

Climate-focused activities

Climate change adaptation:

  • Implement solutions to capture/store water to increase its availability and prevent shortages from droughts
  • Restore wetlands and/or coastal ecosystems to dissipate the effects of flooding and/or storms

Biodiversity conservation or restoration-focused activities

Biodiversity conservation:

  • Protect and enhance urban habitats
  • Preserve and strengthen existing habitats and ecosystems
  • Create new habitats
  • Protect species
  • Undertake specific measures to protect species

Biodiversity restoration:

  • Rehabilitate and restore damaged or destroyed ecosystems
  • Restore species (native, endangered, or unspecified)

Main beneficiaries

  • Local government/Municipality
  • Citizens or community groups


Management set-up

  • Government-led

Type of initiating organisation

  • Local government/municipality

Participatory approaches/ community involvement

  • Unknown

Details on the roles of the organisations involved in the project

The project was initiated and developed by Tongnan District Planning Bureau, and designed by Turenscape - a landscape design company [1]

Project implemented in response to ...

... an EU policy or strategy? No
... a national policy or strategy? Unknown
... a local policy or strategy? Unknown


Total cost


Source(s) of funding

  • Unknown

Type of funding

  • Unknown

Non-financial contribution


Impacts and Monitoring

Environmental impacts

  • Climate, energy and emissions
  • Strengthened capacity to address climate hazards/natural disasters
  • Water management and blue areas
  • Increased protection against flooding
  • Reduced risk of damages by drought
  • Enhanced protection and restoration of freshwater ecosystems
  • Green space and habitat
  • Increased green space area
  • Increased conservation or restoration of ecosystems
  • Increased number of species present

Economic impacts

  • Unknown

Socio-cultural impacts

  • Social justice and cohesion
  • Improved liveability
  • Improved access to urban green space
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Gain in activities for recreation and exercise
  • Cultural heritage and sense of place
  • Improvement in people’s connection to nature

Type of reported impacts

Expected impacts, Achieved impacts

Presence of formal monitoring system


Presence of indicators used in reporting


Presence of monitoring/ evaluation reports

No evidence in public records

Availability of a web-based monitoring tool

No evidence in public records


Information about this nature-based solution was collected as part of the UNA global extension project funded by the British Academy.