In This Period of Pandemic, What Future for New Chinese Towns with European Architecture? | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online


From luxury brands to electronics, China has a reputation for copying products from the Western world and beyond. This characteristic of reproducing identically was taken to its climax by building, from the 2000s, copies of European cities. Real estate developers have sensed the profit and have undertaken gigantic construction works to satisfy a new Chinese clientele who have traveled extensively in Europe. However, these achievements as residential projects did not find their audience, probably due to an urban atmosphere far removed from Chinese cultural codes. Visiting an exotic city for a day is one thing, staying there and living for years is another. While the Coronavirus pandemic was catastrophic for many tourist sites around the world, these reproductions of European cities could take advantage of this situation thanks to Chinese visitors who can no longer travel to Europe due to the closed borders. The health crisis could even revitalize the unattractive housing sector. This text, following our communication at ICAS 12 relates our research project which began in December 2019 but which never succeeded due to a pandemic hampering travel to China. Two years later, because we have never been able to investigate our subject in China, we are unable to give concrete results but only hypotheses and research orientations. The first part of our text evokes our initial project which concerns the tourist reconversion of these cities with architecture from elsewhere, a subject in correlation with our previous works about simulacrum and tourist imaginaries. The second part focuses on the direction our project has taken through the health crisis: the new hypotheses, the difficulties encountered, and the methodologies envisaged.


Article metrics loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error