We’ve seen Shenzhen 深圳 changing during the past few years. We’ve seen its skyline, alas, reaching for the sky. We’ve seen the 441.8 meter Shenzhen Tower (aka the KK100, architect TFP Farrells) raising up from the ground, being constructed in-between the towers and now finally completed.
Earlier this year, when visiting Shenzhen 深圳 we talked about seasonal skylines, about cities in-between the crisp and cloudy, cities in-between the fog and the flash. Cities for future fishes. There are more skylines out there, for example at randomwire, and there is more speculation about the city’s future as well. Back in 2008, Ou Ning wrote an essay called A City Called Shenzhen:
What will Shenzhen be like in the future?
After the completion of its mission as a special economic zone, Shenzhen has been searching for a new identity. Its years of experimental economic reforms have left the city with a particularly wealthy society; after the people are dressed and fed, will they begin searching for something new? For example, might Shenzhen become a special political zone, and lead the nation in experiments in institutional political reform? A political magazine once conducted this sort of speculation. In recent years, Shenzhen’s government really has adopted a fresher image; it is the first municipal government to call its office building a “Civil Center”, promoting a newly democratic concept with the city residents at the center while the government is at their service, utterly unlike China’s traditional political concept of the primacy of the government. But the reform of political institutions has always been a bottleneck in China, and it’s hard to know exactly what a special political zone would look like.
Although we like to speculate about the future, we feel Shenzhen 深圳 is a city that continuously updates its present political and planning status. Here, the future is never finished, here the skyline is the visible manifestion of a metropolis subjected to several decades of massive growth.
We’ve decided to put three images in larger format. Scan, click, enlarge!
Pictures by movingcities.org