Author: middleway

I'll Tell You Why Chinese Cities Are (Becoming) So Ugly [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2010-3-26 23:21:43 |Display all floors
compared with the architectures of other cities from around the world, modern 21st century chinese architectures are unforgettable marvels of the world of architecture and engineering.  beijing capital and china's highspeed railways alone is an envy of the world


Think twice about this phrase: the progress has value only if it's shared by everyone.

You mention hisgh tech realizations: metro, modern buildings, I totally agree with you: chinese metro are super, metro in cities like london or paris are 100 years old, and difficult to compare.

but as far as I know, peoples dont live in metro or modern buildings. And for most beijing peoples, its hours and hours or transportation every day to go to work,or in traffic jam, years and years of saving money to buy an appartment with poor architecture but maximum price. I'm sorry but when  see the high standing appartment here, excepting the marble and gloden decorating, I just see very poor and awfully classic design for these building.

You talk about "face". Any big city in this world need to have a face, but when you look behind, what do you see? For me, a city is far more than an olympic village, shopping mall, business , administration building and opera. far far more, but I always regret to see this "more" forgotten by these famous architects or urbanists.

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Post time 2010-3-27 05:37:27 |Display all floors
progress has value only if it's shared by everyone.
.
but, it is shared by every everyone, every chinese in the world that is, and that include me, everyone like me, and every chinese inside the prc because: it's known as chinese pride and every chinese (if they deem themselves as chinese that is) have plenty of pride in them?

You mention hisgh tech realizations: metro, modern buildings, I totally agree with you: chinese metro are super, metro in cities like london or paris are 100 years old, and difficult to compare.

I mentioned high tech (as in high speed transit) only because chinese mass transit is the envy of the president of the uninted states, barrack obama, who made it a solom promise that he will make it his effort to catch up to china when china in the respect if elected. in all trueness, it should have been china who should try to up to america.

but as far as I know, peoples dont live in metro or modern buildings.
[/quote]
i'm sorry if i had mislead you on this one. but, when i said metro, my intention was to say metropolist or centers of population. i'm a lazy one as you well know from my small caps but but i definitely wasn't referring to the subway when  I said metro. my mistake.

And for most beijing peoples, its hours and hours or transportation every day to go to work,or in traffic jam, years and years of saving money to buy an appartment with poor architecture but maximum price.

Are you suggesting that beijing should simply drop the horseless carriage and go back to the horseless one or even to the days of the richshaw or even bicycle power? there's a price to pay for everything and modern urbanizations goes hand in hand with smog, traffic jams, and hours of commutes to and from work or from one place to another. it happen across the united states coast to coast from nyc, san francisco.

You talk about "face". Any big city in this world need to have a face, but when you look behind, what do you see? For me, a city is far more than an olympic village, shopping mall, business , administration building and opera. far far more, but I always regret to see this "more" forgotten by these famous architects or urbanists.

chinese cities not only have a face all its own, it even have characteristics all it own but one thing chinese cities have in common -- it's east meets west or, the veryu modern meets the very prehistoric so sorry, but your words just don't wash here.
Putin's a killer. This was the claim made by Fox News journalist; Bill O'Reilly during his recent interview with Donald Trump. Trump's reply came in the form of a simple question. What, you think our country's so innocent?

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Post time 2010-3-27 06:50:36 |Display all floors
Originally posted by middleway at 2010-3-26 23:27
[quote]It's the "Cargo Cult" mentality. We saw that in developing countries over a century ago.

Yes, that is so true, i'd never thought of it that way before, but it really is, but just on a much bigger scale than a small tribal island somewhere. It's like the worlds biggest cargo cult culture taking over with all this development. ... [/quote]
Too many places see the glass walled skyscraper as a sign of progress. So many cities do this which provides a misleading facade, meanwhile crime, poverty and corruption keep on happening at ground level.

Originally posted by middleway at 2010-3-26 23:27
The "Cargo China" mentality, that can be a new term I've just developed   

Hmm, I don't know if that accurately describes the syndrome. I suggested it was like the cargo cult mentality but in China's case it's more of a "Modernity Cult".
Tall concrete skyscrapers replacing traditional style buildings.
Demolishing of traditional neighbourhoods and so on. It's all part of what some see as progress, to emulate Western cities.

Where's the "progress with Chinese characteristics" which preserves and enhances all the great things about Chinese culture and architecture?

While many here crow about China's 5000 years of civilisation, CCP officials, since the cuItural revolution, seem to be doing everything they can to demolish China's culture.
"他不是救星, 他是一个非常淘气男孩" - Monty Python

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Post time 2010-3-27 07:57:36 |Display all floors
Originally posted by emucentral at 2010-3-27 06:50
Tall concrete skyscrapers replacing traditional style buildings.
Demolishing of traditional neighbourhoods and so on. It's all part of what some see as progress, to emulate Western cities.
Where's the "progress with Chinese characteristics" which preserves and enhances all the great things about Chinese culture and architecture?


So where is the Australian character in your glass-covered skyscrapers? Australian cities look no different from any city in the USA!

Don't ask China to do what you cannot achieve yourself!

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Post time 2010-3-27 07:58:46 |Display all floors
Originally posted by emucentral at 2010-3-26 14:50

Yes, that is so true, i'd never thought of it that way before, but it really is, but just on a much bigger scale than a small tribal island somewhere. It's like the worlds biggest cargo cult cult ...


let's look at it this way, emucentral:

buildings with a chinese characteristic doesn't put bread and butter...  errrrrr....  i meant rice and soya sauce...  errrr... i meant (man-tao and extra spicy chilly sauce) on the dinner table ...

... glittering skyscrapers reaching for the skies housing company headquarters and used as brand name 5 star hotels and maybe, just maybe...  (damn! i'll be put in front of a firing squat for saying this but what the heck!) a few vegas style casinos will do the trick roflol and lamof...  

besides, I don't perceive glittering skyscrapers; buildings in the form of artworks; and sculptures, i.e., shanghai's dong fang mingzhu as [western architecture] per sey... i see it as the [modern age] catching up to us and, as modern men's, we either go with the flow of modern times or we bury our head in the sands of past china's glorious past and remain the sick and weird old man of asia we once were. for the chinese of this board, it's your choice...

so, what'll it be? modern men's or sick and weird old man of asia???



[ Last edited by edisonone at 2010-3-26 04:02 PM ]
Putin's a killer. This was the claim made by Fox News journalist; Bill O'Reilly during his recent interview with Donald Trump. Trump's reply came in the form of a simple question. What, you think our country's so innocent?

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Post time 2010-3-27 15:09:50 |Display all floors
"So where is the Australian character in your glass-covered skyscrapers? Australian cities look no different from any city in the USA!
Don't ask China to do what you cannot achieve yourself!"

Nebula, I think you're missing the point.  The reason many western people care about cultural heritage now is that they regret the previous destruction of their own distinctive buildings etc- so they hope China can learn from their example to avoid this (although obviously, it's too late now for most of China).

On the other hand, Europe has lots of examples of cities that have managed to preserve at least a significant part of their distinctive character while modernising- so that too can be learnt from.

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Post time 2010-3-27 15:14:01 |Display all floors
"buildings with a chinese characteristic doesn't put bread and butter...  errrrrr....  i meant rice and soya sauce...  errrr... i meant  (man-tao and extra spicy chilly sauce)  on the dinner table ... "

Tell that to the businessmen who pump billions of yuan into rebuilding 'old towns', temples etc as tourist attractions.  And as for having to go 'with the flow'- now it's pretty rich (and getting richer), can't China start defining that flow?  Are poor imitations of European villas, complete with fake churches etc, essential to China's economic growth?

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