Ashley Scott Kelly

Studio Nepal
Designing nature, standards, and discontinuities in the Himalayas (2016-17)

The University of Hong Kong

Instructor: Ashley Scott Kelly

Course abstract
Regional corridors tied to China’s 2013 One Belt One Road strategy are set to connect Eurasian economic centers through some of the last frontiers of Central and South Asia. In efforts to expand China’s overproduction into India’s markets, land routes such as the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar (BCIM) economic corridor and rail via Tibet and Nepal are in various stages of planning and construction. At their seam along the foothills of the Himalayas are critical landscapes long conserved by their relative isolation and distance from the state. However, increased investments in road, rail, and hydropower infrastructure, as well as a profusion of planned Special Economic Zones, are stressing long-held center-periphery binaries between Kathmandu and the far eastern, western and Terai regions of the country. China is now Nepal’s leading source of foreign direct investment, bilateral trade, and, as of the devastating earthquakes of April and May 2015, its greatest single source of humanitarian aid. Given the proliferation of new projects and agendas, this landscape planning studio seeks alternative models of infrastructural and environmental management, engineering, and economic and social integration in Nepal’s frontier regions.

Fabricating Site. By ZHANG Zikai.
Fabricating Site. By ZHANG Zikai.
Initial student research and field photos exhibited at studio final review.
Initial student research and field photos exhibited at studio final review.