‘Urban Design’ for Jake’s Theme

Jake explains his challenge like this, “Urban design is the process of designing and shaping cities, towns and villages. Whereas architecture focuses on individual buildings, urban design address the larger scale of groups of buildings, of streets and public spaces, whole neighbourhoods and districts, and entire cities, to make urban areas functional, attractive, and sustainable.”

Here is my choice of pics for Jake’s challenge.

The Megacity of Hong Kong, whose name derives from ‘Hsaing Kang’, meaning fragrant harbour, rates as one of the most populous cities in the world.

Here is a view taken looking over Kowloon to Victoria Harbour. How it has changed since my mom lived there as a child in the 1930’s, when she used to be taken to school in a rickshaw.

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The city itself is really like most of the world’s cities, except for the signs being all in Chinese.

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It doesn’t look terrible busy in these photos, but to me it felt like wall to wall people, especially at night-time, when all the locals as well as the tourists seemed to be out on the streets. I believe some family apartments are so small, (only 40-50 sq metres), and have bunk beds overlapping with cooking areas and food storage. Is it surprising that people only go home to their ‘cubicle apartments to sleep, and that they conduct their social life outside ?

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Here is one of the side streets of the city.

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Although Hong Kong is one of the richest cities in the world, in the back streets, the signs of poverty were very evident. Almost a fifth of the population of this glittering city, are suffering extreme financial hardship.

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To see more interpretations of Jake’s theme, just click here.