In the centre of Shanghai, on either side of the Huangpu River, there is digging and drilling going on. The building site is 20 times bigger than last year’s Expo space in the Spanish city of Saragossa. Once again, China is hoping to convince the world it is a modern, open country. Hong Hao is the director-general of the Bureau of Shanghai World Expo Coordination. He is upbeat despite the financial crisis: "The crisis has hit Shanghai in a critical phase of Expo preparations. Many countries are affected across the world. But not one country or international organisation has officially cancelled as yet." Cutting down on costs However, the 180 participating countries and other exhibitors are cutting down on costs. It is still unclear who will fund the American pavilion because sponsors are few and far between and public funds cannot be used for such events. Brazil and Argentina are not building their own pavilions. Siemens -- one of Expo’s 13 official "global partners" -- … [Read more...] about A Massive Show in Times of Crisis: Expo 2010 in Shanghai
Shanghai new international expo centre
The Expo 2010 puts the city of Shanghai squarely in the international limelight. This highlights the fact that Shanghai has become an international metropolis alongside New York, Paris, London and Tokyo in the twenty years since the establishment of the city's Special Economic Zone Pudong in 1990. Since then, most of the exciting changes arguably happened on the eastern shore of the Huangpu river, but there is a building in old Shanghai that is still a landmark: the Shanghai Mansion. Built in the 1930s and 40s and located in the centre of Shanghai, not far from the famous Bund area, it stands out for its peculiar architecture. When I saw Shanghai Mansion for the first time in the 1980s, it clearly differed from the colonial-style buildings of the Bund and the prevalent socialist-realist architecture of that time. And, surprisingly, the Shanghai Mansion immediately recalled images of the 1927 science fiction film ”Metropolis” by Fritz Lang. Historic vision resembles … [Read more...] about Opinion: Shanghai Expo 2010 – Metropolis reloaded?