About the Book
This is a report from an old communal housing estate close to the new city project "Huacheng Square" with it's underground "Mall of the World", showed on the pictures of the previous pages. A year ago I discovered this quarter, approximatively one square mile in dimension. It was completely enclosed by barriers of concrete. Inside the houses were empty, the whole area abandoned. A rather frightening picture, reminding yourself to pictures from war zones.
Coming back to Guangzhou again this year, I realised that life has reconquered the housing estate. Parts of the concrete barriers have been torn down and sort of a daily life has reconvened in the narrow alleys. There seem still no people living in the quarter, but a kind of street life is developping.
I was not able to figure out what exactly was the reason of the reoccupation of this sure once very lively central quarter, but from pamphlets and newspaper reports posted on the walls I guessed that there is some serious resistance to the vanishing of another traditional housing estate.
And if you see people planting a tree in midst of a scree with such a defiant energy, there sure isn't everything lost for the old quarters of Guangzhou ...