the white wall

Once heritage buildings have proved to be economically as valuable as skyscrapers, planners go for this niche market.

Former guilty consciences towards destroying old downtowns in Chinese cities have evolved towards market-oriented historic preservation. Taken the case of nowadays Kunming, capital of Yunnan Province, a virtual white wall is the new sort of curtain to hide the scene of a backstage fulled with ambitious investors.

“the new yearning to consume the past has also led to the transformation of entire urban streetscapes into stage sets for history-themed consumption.” as Thomas J. Campanella describes in The Concrete Dragon.

Without considering dramatic eviction of local dwellers, restructuring alleys into high-level fashion shopping malls are already regarded as a sustainable future, supported by the argument of respecting architecture... “the value of making history pay” (Campanella)

[all images from to-be-gentrified Old Town Kunming, China by deconcrete 2010]


  1. Paulo

    thank you mister Fernandez-Pascual for your always mativating posts.

  2. Paulo

    motivating, of course

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