Homes aren’t the only thing being snapped up by developers and levelled. The Dongtai Antiques Market is a chaotic warren of individual street vendors with anything from old watches to Communist tchotchkes but it won’t exist for much longer. This gentleman was telling us that he’s being moved out to an antiques mall in a high-rise building. He doesn’t like the idea, though — the rent is much higher and the location is much less convenient.
Block by block, Shanghai’s Old City is being bought up by developers. They are required to relocate families into new apartments and, for many families, this is a real step up from the decaying residences and shared facilities in their current apartments. As the developers are able to move more and more people out of a block, they begin blocking off sections of it, marking buildings with what I’m told is the Mandarin character for ‘destruction’.
This is the staircase into one of the homes in the Old City. These homes have been divided, divided, and divided again — you can get a rough estimate of the number of families living in each little building from the power meters on the wall.
We took a photographic tour of Shanghai’s Old CIty. The residents were, largely, happy to see us and highly amused that we wanted to take pictures of them and their back alleys.
"Feed me, Seymour!"
You can print _anything_ on a t-shirt and somebody in China will end up wearing it.