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The Bund 外滩

by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009 12:55 pm

The Bund is an area of Huangpu District in Shanghai. It's one of the most famous tourist destinations in Shanghai.The area centres on a section of Zhongshan Road within the former Shanghai International Settlement, which runs along the western bank of the Huangpu River, facing Pudong, in the eastern part of Huangpu District. The Bund usually refers to the buildings and wharves on this section of the road, as well as some adjacent areas.

Located along the Huangpu River, the Bund shows off Shanghai's outstanding foreign buildings, most of which were erected before 1937. In the 1930s, the string of buildings hosted the city's financial and commercial centers, and the world's greatest banks and trading empires established a base here, including banks and trading houses from Britain, France, the U.S., Russia, Germany, Japan, The Netherlands and Belgium. A building boom at the end of 19th century and beginning of 20th century led to the Bund becoming a major financial hub of East Asia. The former French Bund, east of the walled city was formerly more a working harbourside.

By the 1940s the Bund housed the headquarters of many, if not most, of the major financial institutions operating in China, including the "big four" national banks in the Republic of China era. However, with the Communist victory in the Chinese civil war, many of the financial institutions were moved out gradually in the 1950s, and the hotels and clubs closed or converted to other uses. The statues of colonial figures and foreign worthies which had dotted the riverside were also removed.

The Bund centres on a stretch of the Zhongshan Road, named after Sun Yat-sen. To the west of this stretch of the road stands some 52 buildings of various western classical and modern styles, including Gothic, Baroque and Romanesque. They are called "The International Architectural Exposition''.

At the northern end of The Bund, along the riverfront, is Huangpu Park, once called British Public Gardens,which was under the control of the Brits in 1930s. It was forbidden territory to Chinese people for years, unless they were accompanying employers. That's why the park is famous for the sign reported to have proclaimed "No dogs or Chinese", although this exact wording never existed. Today, the park is free and open to everyone, in which is situated the Monument to the People's Heroes, a tall and abstract concrete tower which is a memorial for the those who died during the revolutionary struggle of Shanghai dating back to the Opium Wars.

Near the Nanjing Road intersection stands what is currently the only bronze statue along the Bund. It is a statue of Chen Yi, the first Communist mayor of Shanghai. Further east is a tall levee, constructed in the 1990s to ward off flood waters. The construction of this high wall has dramatically changed the appearance of the Bund.

From the Bund, you can also see the Oriental Pearl Television Tower and many skyscrapers in Pudong located on the other side of the Huangpu River.

» GPS Tag: 121.48604, 31.23848
» Time Tag: 1843 AD

 

Discussion

   

The International Architectural Exposition of various western classical styles, including Gothic, Baroque and Romanesque stand along the Bund.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009

The Bund in 1930s, the picture shows the Goddess of Peace monument for the end of War World I, built in 1924. Unfortunately, the monument were destroyed during Japanese occupation.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009

The dome of the HSBC Building on the left side, and the clock tower of the Customs House on the right side.
The HSBC building completed in 1923, was the second largest bank building in the world at that time, after the Bank of Scotland building in UK.
The Customs House was built in 1927. The clock and bell built in England and in imitation of Big Ben, remains the largest clock in Asia. The bell mechanism was made by Whitchurch, but now the clock music is not the traditional Westminster tune, changed to "The East Is Red", a Maoism featured song.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009   license

The Semaphore on the former Quai de France, built in 1907, already stands on The Bund for a century.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009   license

The Peace Hotel is also the former Sasson House, a 13-story building that was the tallest in Shanghai at that time.
The Sasson family gained incredible wealth through opium smuggling and became a big name in Shanghai's real estate business in the early 20th century. When Victor Sasson built Sasson House (Cathay Hotel) at The Bund in 1929.
The Bank of China building is on the right side.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009

The British Consulate buildings, the oldest architectures reserved at the Bund, were built in 1847 and 1873 after the Opium Wars.
The original structure still remains, waiting for the restoring.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009   license

Harry Smith Parkes and Chen Yi
Harry Smith Parkes 巴夏礼 (1828 - 1885) was the first British Consul General in Shanghai. A statue of Parkes on The Bund, unveiled by the Duke of Connaught in 1890, stood until it was destroyed during the Japanese occupation.
Chen Yi 陈毅 (1901-1972) was the first Communist mayor of Shanghai. A statue of Chen Yi on The Bund, constructed in 1990s, now stands at the same site of the removed statue of Parkes.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009

(Please read the terms 1 and 4 of the regulations carefully)." >

The famous sign of the former British Public Gardens proclaimed "No dogs or Chinese"
(Please read the terms 1 and 4 of the regulations carefully).
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009

The municipal flag of Shanghai International Settlement
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009

The People's Heroes Memorial situated in the site of the former British Public Gardens, is a memorial for the those who died during the revolutionary struggle of Shanghai dating back to the Opium Wars.
by Robin Zhang , Jan 22, 2009   license

[ I want to upload a photo. ]
 
       

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