[Click image to enlarge]
“Here we are in old Shanghai. But many of the buildings here have a kind of symbol stamped on them. This means simply one word — DEMOLISH.”


“The massive rebuilding programme ordered by the government authorities requires the residence of Shanghai’s old town to be relocated — by order.”

“These houses may look grim … but they are homes.”

(Image from a BBC documentary in which Andrew Marr looks at five of the world’s biggest megacities. You know them: London, Dhaka, Tokyo, Mexico City and Shanghai.)


Andrew Marr thinks that London is the best world megacity: ‘Tokyo with its Japanese conformity. Shanghai – still under the thumb of Communist bosses. Dhaka – mired in corruption. Mexico City with its exuberant extremes of colour and violence. So here’s the good news: London, the nearest we have to a megacity, has lord knows plenty of problems. It’s got terrible housing, huge inequalities, transport nightmares. But compared to many of its rivals, it does feel more open, more mixed. More of a genuinely *world* city. Sometimes, you have to go pretty far away to realise how lucky you are back home.’

‘Sometimes, you have to go pretty far away to realise how lucky you are back home.’ –This is true for me, too.

One thought on “Demolish

  1. He is right about London – it is GENUINELY multicultural, unlike some cities that like to describe themselves as “cosmopolitan”. Did I say Hong Kong? Oh dear.


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