This article examines the transformation of Nanjido, an island that served as a landfill for Seoul from 1978 to 1993, into an ecological park called World Cup Park in preparation for the 2002 FIFA World Cup. It discusses how this mega-event instigated urban planning focusing on ecological restoration and urban regeneration and how the history of Nanjido was subsequently framed as the undoing of the industrial past of the city, most notably seen in its waste management. This article analyzes this contested space through a careful reading of two documentary sources: The Millennium Park Master Plan (Milleniŏm kongwŏn kibon kyehoek, 2000) and Memories of the Park: The World Cup Park (Kongwŏn ŭi kiŏk: Wŏldŭk’ŏp kongwŏn, 2020). Through the reading of a master plan that articulates a vision for the future and an archive that systematically gazes toward the past, this article unpacks the narrative of this strange space, where preindustrial, industrial, and postindustrial histories simultaneously coexist and cancel each other out.

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