To see someplace literally change
before your eyes, go to Shanghai.
While standing on the roof of the building my office was surveying for restoration
in January 1997, I counted 28 new 30+ story buildings under construction...
and that was on a foggy day with poor visibility! If the air
had been clearer, I'm sure at least 30 more could have been counted.
The amount of construction is simply staggering. At night,
the sky is filled with the flashes of welding. Sparks topple
down onto the streets. Bamboo scaffolding is everywhere. I even
watched the start of a pour for a fourth story concrete floor
slab at 11:00pm at night. Amid this change, many of the alley
houses constructed in the early 20th century still stand throughout
the city. But what exists today may not be present tomorrow.