Saturday, May 5, 2012

Inside the Kowloon Walled City where 50,000 residents eked out a grimy living in the most densely populated place on earth

Once thought to be the most densely populated place on Earth, with 50,000 people crammed into only a few blocks, these fascinating pictures give a rare insight into the lives of those who lived Kowloon Walled City.

Taken by Canadian photographer Greg Girard in collaboration with Ian Lamboth the pair spent five years familiarising themselves with the notorious Chinese city before it was demolished in 1992.

The city was a phenomenon with 33,000 families and businesses living in more than 300 interconnected high-rise buildings, all constructed without contributions from a single architect.

Ungoverned by Health and Safety regulations, alleyways dripped and the maze of dark corridors covered one square block near the end of the runway at Kai Tak Airprot.

'I spent five years photographing and becoming familiar with the Walled City, its residents, and how it was organised. So seemingly compromised and anarchic on its surface, it actually worked and to a large extent, worked well,' said Mr Girard on his website.

Dating back to the Song Dynasty it served as a watch post for the military to defend the area against pirates and to manage the production of Salt before eventually coming under British rule. Read More