Hong Kong’s Squatter Settlements

[youtube]WFqaMpFD4TE[/youtube] If any kind of urban form defines the Hong Kong experience, it’s the skyscraper. Just look out from any window: there are thousands of them. But what preceded those high-rises, and even gave birth to them, were the vast shantytowns built throughout the twentieth century by refugees from mainland China. In the decades following […]

Paharganj, or the Dregs of Delhi

Tooti Chowk, Paharganj, Delhi Paharganj is a mix of crowded makeshift homes, budget traveler hangouts, and the odd chunk of decaying heritage. It’s also an example of what happens when a section of town is left to its own devices with little consideration for urban planning. A few centuries back, Paharganj was a grain bazaar […]

Don’t Bulldoze the Slums

Street scene in Dharavi. Photo from the Economist “Around 6am, the squealing of copulating rats—signalling a night-long verminous orgy on the rooftops of Dharavi, a slum in Mumbai—gives way to the more cheerful sound of chirruping sparrows. Through a small window in Shashikant (“Shashi”) Kawale’s rickety shack, daylight seeps. It reveals a curly black head […]

Posted in: Politics, Public Space, Society and Culture, South Asia by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on Don’t Bulldoze the Slums , , , , , ,