10-minute High-Tech City in Seoul in the Works

The idea of a 10-minute city where you can easily access your local market, gym, school and workplace is quite irresistible, isn’t it? You can walk or ride a bike or drive your vehicle without enduring traffic since everything you will ever need is already within reach.

This is the concept behind Project H1, where an old industrial space close to the nearby mountains from Seoul would be used as a building site. In 2019, UNStudio was invited by the Hyundai Development Company to design a ‘smart’ 10-minute city that promotes green energy, diversity and digital economy, making the living space productive and aesthetic for both work and play.

This will be situated between two existing residential areas and a new mixed-use hub would be ideal with a railway link and bridges, making the main street extended across the site. Project H1 will combine eight residential buildings with co-working offices and study spaces. The land area is about 125 acres, to include fitness centers, swimming pools, entertainment venues and hydroponic urban farms for cultivation and consumption.


In a statement by UNStudio, the project has been given the green light but no date to break ground on the site has been given yet. The CGI renderings from the masterplan reveal how the neighborhood will appear, with gardens, walkways and green roofs for residents to enjoy. Clean, green energy will be generated on site. The architects will set systems in place to capture and store rain in order to reduce water use.

The aim is to provide residents of all ages and families with a smart, healthy, green environment where places of work and leisure are within 10 minutes from their home. This will be a dynamic neighborhood of convenience, comfort and community. This model can be a pilot for mixed-use urban developments and residential structures of the future.

The top priority for this project is the resident’s quality of life. By making Project H1 a pedestrian-friendly, diverse and innovative place of residence.

“We have taken an approach of ‘flexible urban density’. This enables the multi-functional use of public space and employs mixed-use organizational models to ensure that the residents can meet, connect and socialize, both in planned and spontaneous scenarios. The components of the masterplan not only encourage the creation of strong community bonds, the proposed digital service packages also create an unprecedented level of convenience for the residents.”

Ben van Berkel, co-founder of UNStudio

In a statement by UNStudio, the project has been given the green light but no date to break ground on the site has been given yet. Still, this is an exciting project to look forward to. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, interests in such urban projects are growing. Working from home is still the norm for most employees around the world and people still avoid communal places. Perhaps architects can look into developing structures that manage overcrowding and still be able to provide comfort and convenience to the residents.

Photo Credits: Courtesy WAX & Virgin Lemon