Discover a modern style from history's past

Hidden among the metropolis and modern structures, there are also some classic areas in Shanghai which remains true to the old style.

Hidden among the metropolis and modern structures, there are also some classic areas in Shanghai which remains true to the old style. Transformed from former historic sites, these places share both old memories and new creative elements. Sophie Wang and Joan Zheng have selected some of the city’s rarely known parks for you to explore.

1876 Creative Park


Near the former site of Jiangwan Station of Songhu Railway, this creative park features old trains, blockhouses and rails. It hosts the memory of industrial development in Shanghai. 

There is a big train at the entrance and the carriage is transformed into a tea house. Around the train there are many stores transformed from containers. The stores include restaurants, bars, gyms, pet shops and other creative stores. 

Metro Line 3 is just over the park, and the contrast is striking.

Bund 1919


Bund 1919 was developed by Shangtex Holding Co. Ltd, and Red Town Cultural development Co Ltd, as a major cultural project in Baoshan district. The center, located near Wusongkou area, was an old textile mill in the 1910s. 

This creative park maintained some of the traditional elements of the old textile mill such as the textile machines, weaving tools and a bell tower. Visitors can experience the textile culture and also feel the art atmosphere.

It also hosts several art venues, including the Yang design Museum, Max Creative Industry Organization, Red Town design and Art Space and a number of pottery and creative studios.

Elite Valley


Elite Valley is an integrated creative center combining offices, museums, boutiques, restaurants and cafes. It was once the renowned China national Complete Plant Import & export Corporation group (Shanghai supply warehouse), which witnessed the glory time of Chinese diplomacy and external economy since the funding of the People’s Republic of China.

Combining both historical and modern elements together, elite Valley now attracts a number of visitors and firms. In this creative center, you can find the old tracks from Songhu Railway, which is one of the earliest railway lines in China. Besides, it has a series of train-themed buildings, such as train coffee bars, train gardens and art installations. 

Some companies also have their offices here, and all the offices within this creative park are deliberately decorated with distinctive styles. Various boutique shops filled with creative products are at reasonable prices.

Peninsula Bay


THIS creative park is located at the former site of Original Schenck Shanghai Testing Machinery. All the red brick buildings here were built in the 1920s. Instead of changing the building structure, the park remains in the old style and adds more creative elements. Pipes and banisters are recoated and decorated, while many walls are painted with graffiti.

There are many distinctive coffee bars and creative stores around the park. There are also some fairs and markets at weekend.

Wuwei Space Creative Industry Park


Built in 1946, this place was once a cotton mill. With pavilions and gardens inside, it was called “garden mill” at that time. In 1971, it became a chemical fibre factory. In 2007, it was transformed to an industry park. 

The remains of the original brick and concrete structure are clearly visible both externally and internally. The structures inside have various kinds of industrial styles. There are warehouses and zigzag workshops.

The park also has photography studios and bridal shops.

2577 Creative Garden


Situated on Longhua Road, this creative garden covers 600,000 square meters. With massive iron pillars and solid beams, it was once the factory of the Jiangnan manufacturing Bureau.

2577 Creative garden was reconstructed into a place more suitable for office use after construction planning. 

It has 36 buildings from the different historical periods, including six heritage buildings and historical buildings. 

This creative garden is positioned to be an inventive office center in garden style. now, a number of design companies, construction firms, advertising agencies, animation companies as well as cultural consulting agencies have joined this fantastic creative center. 

The center also has facilities for hosting art exhibitions, making it a new cultural landmark in Shanghai.

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