Symbolic, Bustling, Orderly
The trains are busy all hours of the day. There are rules. It is a bustling chaos in motion restrained by the order of lines on the sidewalks, arrows in the stairwells, green lights or red x’s at turnstiles, stanchions merging entrance lanes, flashing lights, and directionals on the subway car maps. Add easy to find customer information booths, strict rules about eating on a train, and station personnel to aid passengers in need and you have a human beehive. Hong Kong has been legally turned over to China almost twenty years now yet Hong Kong remains a symbol of success and a haven of free expression for native Hong Kong residents. It is curious to see this symbol of independent expression as China makes the effort for it to be more Chinese and less of its’ previous and perhaps still current self.
Relentless, Mountainous, Packed
Upon arrival into Hong Kong, it is hard not to note the massive amount of construction going on. After arrival into the core of the city, you begin to appreciate how relentless this push is. The population and employment density in Hong Kong is the greatest in the world. While I could not find it on a list of the densest cities, this may be to the extensive underpopulated mountainous area the city of Hong Kong claims. However, in terms of block by block density, I have never seen anything that compares. Mind you, I have not visited India or mainland China, which limits my appreciation of what density looks like. What I can say, is that New York, Paris, and Tokyo seem positively mellow by my experience.