Progress is the most important factor in China as the fastest growing economy in the world. Chongqing being the fastest growing city and a major contributor to the economic growth of the country, with a population of over 30 million and growing. The result is that old buildings are being demolished and new developments are rising from the dust and ashes at breakneck speed with Shibati (“eighteen stairs” in Chinese) being the latest area due for redevelopment.
The area is 38 million square feet with a dwindling population of 7000 with a per capita income of only $1,000 a year. These is an area in the heart of the metropolis and on the doorstep of the pride of Chongqing, Jiefangbei. Shibati is a community at the centre of Chongqing northwest of Jiafangbei. There are cases of forced evictions by police and military on behalf of either the government or local landowners. Government and local government owns the land in Chongqing and give little or no notice of when they are taking buildings down and no real assistance to people on a low income in getting rehoused. Local residence in the area are being relocated to one of three areas, Bagongli, Liziba and Lijia. The furthest is Lijia which is over an your hour away from where they used to live by metro. Not everyone is unhappy about the relocation, Wang, a local that has lived in the area about ten years sees the relocation as a positive step. She says that the conditions they live in at the moment are not good and are waiting for the P.L.A. (Peoples Liberation Army) to relocate her, her granddaughter, daughter and her son in-law. Although she doesn't know where she will be sent she is sure it will be better than the two bedroom apartment she lives in at the moment.
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