It’s instructive to jump off the number 11 subway line, once its passed the airport station. In Bao’an District, the No 11 line runs parallel to Bao’an Road, which delineates the inner border between the older, historic village settlements and their industrial parks. East of Bao’an Road, one heads toward the Pearl River, land reclamation, and scattered reminders of this deeper history. West of Bao’an Road, one heads through large industrial parks toward National expressway G107, which was the road that first connected the original Special Zone to Guangzhou via Songgang (images of a 2008 walk, here). At Nantou Checkpoint, National Highway 107 becomes Shannan Road and a fast track to the inner district real estate boom.
Yesterday’s walk through “Fuyong Brigade” or “Fuyong New Village” reveals several important features of the northern section of the Bao’an Road ecology.
- It still has industry and factory jobs, and moreover
- it is a higher value added manufacturing base than the industrial parks in eastern Shenzhen, including Dalang;
- This area is dominated by a single surname (the Chens) and
- individual compounds and gated entries to handshake buildings are common.
- In addition, the area is developing residential developments to take advantage of the convenience that the subway affords.
- Previously, this area was too far away to be a viable bedroom community for administrative workers and young managers and consequently
- there’s not yet a lot of coffee and leisure consumption in the area, which in turn
- makes this densely populated area seem abandoned during the day.
Together, these features comprise a landscape of harsh lines and explicit segregations; this is a landscape in which walls and their maintenance order inequality even as they attest to local wealth. Impressions below from Fuyong New Village, which is located just east of the Fuyong exit, line 11, Shenzhen Metro.