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Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music(서울우리소리박물관)

Development Type: Redevelopment/Regeneration Project

Type Of Developer: Public Sector

Start Year: 2015

Address: Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music 96, Yulgok-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul, Republic of Korea, 03131


Contributor: audex


Location Description
The Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music is located in front of Donhwamun Gate, the main gate of Changdeokgung. Located at the beginning of Donhwamun-ro, the site is adjacent to the ‘Seoul Donhwamun Traditional Theater’, a project that was carried out together, and you can go to the main gate of Jongmyo along Seosunra-gil, where the Hanok is located a lot. In addition, Unhyeongung, Ikseon-dong Hanok Village, and Tapgol Park are located to the west. If you follow Donhwamun-ro to the south, Sewoon Shopping Center is located.

Case Report


The area in front of Changdeokgung was recognized as an underdeveloped area due to its historical identity being obscured by space disconnection. The urban regeneration project established a museum to emphasize the historical connectivity of Donhwamun-ro and revitalized commercial districts.

Development Info.

Development Scale: Building

Total Development Cost: 21,258,000,000₩

Total Land Area: 908.2㎡

Total Development Area: 249.16㎡(Building area) , 1,385㎡(Gross floor area) / 1.6year(Constrction period, 2018.01.01-2019.08.31)

Area Type: Urban Area - Urban Retail Area

Start Date: 2015/02/02

Opening Date: 2019/11/21

Planning Approval: Construction of Donhwamun-ro Traditional Cultural Facility (Korean Folk Song Museum), 2018.01.01

Lead Developer: Seoul Metropolitan Government Urban Infrastructure Headquarters

Consultants: Chairman of the National Building Policy Committee (Seung Hyo-sang), Director of the Seoul Museum of History, Seoul Design Foundation, Korea Trade Promotion Agency, Seoul Cultural Foundation, Geumseong Architects


Economic Context

The number of businesses in Jongro 1,2,3,4 was 17,044 in 2005 and decreased every year from 2005 to 2010, but the number of businesses has been increasing since 2011, but the number of existing businesses has not recovered to 16,071 in 2014. There are 2,546 wholesale and retail businesses in Jongro 1,2,3, and 4, accounting for about 50% of the total, followed by 14.28% in manufacturing and 12.45% in lodging and restaurant businesses. The total number of businesses in these top three industries is 3,924 which is 76.1% of the total. Restaurant and bar businesses were distributed in Nakwon-dong, or 42.3% of the total, and 83 places, or 14.9% of the restaurant businesses, were distributed in Donui-dong, adjacent to the area. Korean traditional music and hanbok-related companies are mainly concentrated around Donhwamun-ro and Donhwa Mun-ro 11-street, but are evenly distributed on the back of some blocks in Ikseon-dong and Kwonnong-dong.

Social Context

The population of Seoul and Jongro-gu showed a steady decline from 1995 to 2010 before increasing in 2015. The population of Jongro 1, 2, 3, and 4 street continued to decrease from 1985 to 2005 and has increased since 2010. Currently, the population of Jongro 1, 2, 3, and 4 street is 8,786, down 61.26% from the population of 19,623 in 1985. Due to the weak settlement of Donhwamun-ro area, there is a low possibility of population inflow due to the suspension of development projects, and the possibility of population change is not high as large-scale sites such as Nakwon Shopping Center, Unhyeongung, Tapgol Park, Changdeokgung, Jongmyo. The aging index in Jongno-gu is 160.3 percent, the second highest among 26 districts in Seoul after Jung-gu.

Environmental Context

Before the project, a gas station was located in a large floating population at the location of the museum. Changdeokgung is located in the north of the museum, and Jongmyo is located in the east, creating a spatial disconnection. From the Joseon Dynasty to the present, historical and cultural contents of major streets were discovered. One of the urban regeneration projects, including pedestrian road maintenance projects, museum construction, and repair costs, is the construction of the Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music.

Historical Context

The Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music faces Donhwamun Gate northward, the main gate of Changdeokgung. The museum is located in the old border defense council(비변사), which served as the supreme conference organization. Donhwamun-ro to the east of the museum was on the way for the king to meet the people at Changdeokgung. Geumwiyeong, one of the five military camps established to defend Seoul and its outskirts during the late Joseon Dynasty, was located west of the site.

The Plan

Pre-planning Efforts

Insa-dong District Unit Plan, Urban regeneration revitalization plan in Nakwon Shopping Center and Donhwa Mun-ro, Re-review of 'The Palace Life Digital Exhibition', Urban regeneration plan in front of Changdeokgung Palace

Vision Statement

Through historical regeneration in front of Changdeokgung in ‘the heart of fortress wall of Seoul(도성 한복판)’, history and stories hidden will be revived with new vitality in the region.

Goals and Objectives

Goals : Construction of the Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music to create a hub for the promotion of traditional culture in Donhwamun street(Donhwamun-ro). Objectives : 1. Tourism attractions such as Insa-dong and Gukak-ro are concentrated, and the location conditions adjacent to Changdeokgung use to foster a hub as a traditional cultural and tourism resource in the Donhwamun area. 2. Provide educational and experience opportunities for traditional culture and inherit and develop traditional culture.

Issues and Problems

Lack of sustainability of applications: The Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music is expensive to install, but continuous replacement of facilities and contents is essential due to rapid technological changes. Inefficient architectural design : low space efficiency due to characteristics of Hanok(한옥) structure and excessive layout of vacant spaces. Exhibition space on the first and second basement floors is not suitable for exhibition environment due to lack of accessibility and low floor height. Leading the creation of culture and insufficient ability to attract tourism : It's just an additional support function for visitors to Changdeokgung, and it's self-absorbing limitation.Failure to contribute to creative activities based on traditions of various cultural genres.

Benchmark Projects

Re-review of 'The Palace Life Digital Exhibition'

Public Engagement Strategy

The design of the museum was selected through the ‘DonhwaMun street Traditional and Cultural Facility Design Contest’, and the name of the " Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music " was selected through civic participation through the ‘DonhwaMun Folk Song Museum's name contest’.

Financing Strategy

The Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music and the traditional Korean Music Arts Center are the same project. The architectural design contest was held for the Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music and the the traditional Korean Music Arts Center. The two buildings were designed by the same architect. The budget for the two buildings was also calculated together.

Existing Community and Residents

It may contribute to the revitalization of local commercial districts by promoting traditional culture and encouraging the increase of visitors through the creation of Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music,traditional culture and tourism hub facilities. It provides educational and experience opportunities for traditional culture in existing occupants and communities, as well as rest areas.

Phasing Strategy

Meeting Water Project(마중물 project): 17 urban regeneration revitalization projects in five categories were selected as a leading project in which the priming water budget(마중물 budget) is invested to lead the revitalization of the urban center in front of Changdeokgung Palace. Cooperation project: - Promotion project: 19 projects in 5 categories should be selected in cooperation with each other to achieve the vision and goals of the urban regeneration plan in front of Changdeokgung Palace. -New Promotion Project: A total of 14 projects in 4 categories should be decided through consultation with related agencies such as Seoul Metropolitan Government to achieve vision and goals of urban regeneration plan in front of Changdeokgung Palace. The construction of the Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music corresponds to a project to create a royal cultural experience center on the way to Donhwamun-ro-Palace, a classification of promotion projects.

The Master Plan

In front of Changdeokgung, a world heritage site and a historical cultural heritage, the gas station was demolished and a traditional cultural facility was built on the site. Through district unit plan, it created a historical and cultural district of Donhwamun-ro(Donhwamun Street). The landscape of Donhwamun-ro has been renovated, including the transplantation and removal of street trees to restore the historical view axis. Through the operation of the car-free street, Donhwamun area was established as a walking district. The historical belt of Insa-dong, Unhyeongung, and Donhwamun-ro was promoted, and a unit plan was implemented so that people could walk through Insa-dong to Jongmyo.

Land Uses and Programs

Audio Room, Special Exhibition gallery, Archive room, Audio kiosks, Permanent Exhibition Gallery, Records Exhibition, Video Room, Education Room, Office, Museum storage

Timeline or Milestones

ʼ08.11.13 : A Plan to Preserve and Promote Traditional Culture in Donhwamoon Area, ʼ09.5. : A plan to build a traditional cultural facility in Donhwa Munro, ʼ09.10. : Conditional passage of the Central Investment Review, ʼ10.2.25. : Determining district unit planning, ʼ10.8.29. : Implementation plan of urban planning facilities project, ’11.10.27 : major socio-political changes ʼ13.4.~ʼ15.1. : Re-examination and implementation of the construction plan, ʼ13.8.7. : Establishment of a plan for the construction of the Korean Folk Song Art Center, ʼ13.12. : Construction of the Korean Folk Song Art Center, ʼ15 2.2. : A plan to change the construction of a traditional cultural facility in Donhwa Mun-ro, ʼ15.11.10. : Establishment of a plan for the construction of the Donhwamun Korean Folk Song Museum, ʼ16.3.31. : Completion of the Korean Folk Song Art Center, ʼ16.9. : Opening of the Korean Folk Song Art Center, ʼ17.5.~10. : Change the design of a Korean Folk song museum, ʼ18.1 : Construction of the Korean Folk Song Museum, ’19.08.31 : Completion of the Korean Folk Song Museum, ’19.11.21 Opening of the Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music

Current Status

The museum is a Korean traditional house(hanok) with one floor above ground and two floors below ground, and is a resting place where visitors can enjoy folk songs collected from 904 villages on the Korean Peninsula. There is the Seoul Donhwamun Korean Folk Song Art Center located between Donhwamun-ro and serves as a base for enjoying the Korean traditional music culture.

Lessons Learned

What is the most important take away from this case?

A review of plan was conducted, but it was not changed from the existing Hanok design. Unlike the Korean Folk Music Art Center, which was built as a hanok building and was exhibited underground, the gap between the buildings is narrow to form an exhibition space, making it difficult to attract natural people. The exhibition space is not variable, and it only serves as an additional space for Changdeokgung. Exhibitions do not work effectively to attract tourists.

Why is this case relevant today and for whom?

The Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music revitalizes traditional commercial districts by forming historical and cultural zones in shrinking local businesses. /Local residents(buisinesses)

Which strategy was proved to be successful?

Although the effect of exhibition space is reduced in the architectural plan, the historical connectivity of the region can be strengthened through hanok buildings. It was successful to increase the width of the road and adjust the scenery by creating a walking district.

In your opinion, what could have improved this project?

It should provide the audio room and some underground spaces to local residents so that they can be used as resting places and community centers for residents, not just for exhibition purposes. The program for exhibition visitor was emphasized.

Any other comments?

I think it is worth investing in that it can become a "walking zone" while experiencing traditional Korean images from Sewoon Shopping Center to Jongmyo, Unhyeongung and Changgyeonggung.


OFFLINE Resources and References

"A Field Survey Report on the Construction of the Donhwamoon Folk Song Museum Collection of winning works for traditional cultural facilities in Seoul Metropolitan Government Urban regeneration plan in front of Changdeokgung Seoul Museum of Korean Folk Music Leaflet"


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Contributor audex


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