Date of Award

Spring 5-30-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)


Landscape Architecture

First Advisor

Robyn Reed

Second Advisor

Claire Fellman


Population aging is a severe problem. The whole world is aging and especially in China. As of the 2010 census, the number of people in China over 60 has reached 178 million, which is 23.6% of world’s aging population. It means 1/4 of the aging population live in China. This thesis will focus on the third-tier cities which have more urgent aging issues and more vulnerable commercial and political statuses, which leads us to Yangzhou, a typical third-tier city in Jiangsu Province. In the context of aging society, the government of Yangzhou keeps moving the elderly from the livable canal system downtown to suburban caring centers (displacement), transforming the system into a commercial tourism corridor to promote its value (gentrification), causing the mental and physical marginalization of the aged and the failing of culture and historical significance of the canal. Can we design a mutually beneficial system for the elderly and the canal network, so that the canal network can be reshaped to improve the needs of the elderly in terms of the transportation, connectivity and gathering; and the elderly can be given the opportunity to give back their resources and energy to create social value instead of blindly consuming the social benefits? In the end, people can age gracefully and smartly and the canal system can gain cultural, historical, and economic sustainability.



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