Thursday, February 26, 2009

Coming Down Alert – Shanghai’s Jewish Quarter

Louisa Lim at NPR reports that the site of the old White Horse Inn is among a number of buildings inside Shanghai’s former Jewish district in Hongkou likely to be knocked down to make way for (wait for it!) a widened road. As the demolition begins much has actually been revealed (and then trashed) such as old shop signs including one for Wuerstel Tenor, a sandwich shop, which had been covered for decades. The demolition will also see the end of other fading shop fronts at the heart of what was known as ‘Little Vienna’ including those of the Cafe Atlantic and Horn’s Imbiss-stube (Horn's Snack Bar).

According to Lim, in 2005, the Chinese government declared 70 acres of the Jewish ghetto a conservation zone. The White Horse Inn (above) and buildings slated for demolition are inside that zone, but aren't designated protected buildings. Sadly professors at Shanghai’s Tongji University who fought for preservation were not told about the demolition until too late.

The full sad story of another triumph of roads over heritage here

Other Coming Down Alerts:

DalianHarbin Jie

Beijing – Jinbao Jie


Matthew said...

Sad to see some interesting and historic buildings disappear from China's landscape, but it certainly isn't much of a surprise anymore.

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