The Bund, a stretch of waterfront on the west bank of the Huangpu (Whangpu) River, was in the late 19th and early 20th centuries part of the International Settlement--the section of Shanghai that was administered by a consortium of western nations (Britain the most important) rather than by the Chinese government.
The riverbank itself is elevated. Large numbers of people stroll, or sit (beer is available for those choosing the latter option).
In sections, the decor is startlingly modern.
Parallel with the riverbank is a major road, Zhongshan Dong Lu. On the west side of the road is a row of handsome buildings, dating to before World War II, which at one time represented the heart of the Western imperialist presence in China. More modern buildings are visible beyond them. The one with a top like a flower, on the left, is the Bund Center.
This was originally the Cathay Hotel, built in 1929, the most prestigious hotel in Shanghai. It is now called the Peace Hotel. Immediately to the left of the hotel is
Nanjing Road. In the right foreground is a statue of Chen Yi, commander of the New Fourth Army during the civil war of the late 1940s. He became Mayor of Shanghai in 1949, and Foreign Minister in 1958.
Pudong, on the far side of the river from the Bund, was comparatively undeveloped until quite recently. But there has been tremendous construction there in recent years. A little to the right of center in the photo, the structure that looks like a couple of balls impaled on a spike is the Oriental Pearl TV Tower. At 486 meters, it was the third tallest tower in the world at the time this photo was taken in 2002. The last time I heard, it had slipped to number five.
View eastward across the Huangpu River. To the right of the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, and farther away, the building with the bumpy appearance, looking a bit like a spear of asparagus, is the Jinmao Building, which at 420.5 meters was the world's third tallest building when this photo was taken in 2002. There are now two considerably taller buildings just in its immediate neighborhood (within a mile) in Pudong.
The Jinmao Building and others on the east side of the Huangpu River. Boat loaded with coal in the foreground.
Harbor district north or northeast of the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, with numerous cranes for loading and unloading ships.
Heroic statue, near the north end of the Bund.
Monument to the People's Heroes, at the north end of the Bund.
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Copyright © 2002, Edwin E. Moïse. Revised October 11, 2017.