A Korean City for Books and Architecture

Shannon Mattern visits a "a publishers’ enclave" that is seeking to reinvent Korean publishing, architecture and urban planning in the wetlands near the Demilitarized Zone.

"When I first heard of Paju Bookcity," writes Mattern, "I imagined a bibliophilic paradise of human-scaled buildings with legible facades nestled side-by-side like volumes on a shelf."

"If Bookcity is not the fairy tale I envisioned, it is a kind of Cinderella story: this is the industrial park remade."

"Located on a 1.6-square-kilometer site in the former flood plain of the Han River, Bookcity has been seeking to reinvent Korean publishing, architecture and urban planning — fields that have changed dramatically in the nation’s tumultuous modern history, and particularly in the decades since the venture was conceived."

Mattern explores the ongoing remaking of Bookcity — and book culture — in the digital era.

Full Story: Paju Bookcity: The Next Chapter

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