THE URBAN DESIGN OF CONCESSION
THE URBAN DESIGN OF CONCESSION —
TRADITION AND TRANSFORMATION IN THE CHINESE TREATY PORTS
Peter Cookson Smith
Established as beachheads of foreign influence along coastal China during the mid-nineteenth century, the twelve Treaty Ports — Shanghai, Dalian (Dalyn), Fuzhou (Foochow), Guangzhou (Canton), Hankou (Hankow), Harbin, Nanjing (Nanking), Ningbo (Ningpo), Shantou (Swatow), Tianjin, Tsingtao, and Xiamen (Amoy) — can be considered from a number of perspectives: initially as differentiated societies with dual administrative structures; as socio-cultural phenomena; as new political power structures; as robust centres of international trade and commercial growth; and as new regimes of city building and institutional development. These ‘gateways’ both into and out of China, transformed not only attitudes to modernization, but almost inadvertently fuelled changing political attitudes.
This book examines the evolving contextual changes in the Treaty Ports over the past 150 years. It illustrates, through writing and line sketches, the imprints on the modernizing cities of older places and spaces from these early times, which have left a residue of physical traces in terms of plan forms, streets and building groups.