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People have long been arguing about the disappearance of China's old cities - whether it should not be so fast, and whether it should not be so cruel as to knock down the buildings that used to give Chinese cities their unique style.

Nostalgia has been part of the urban dwellers' culture. Frequently, when the older cab drivers meet customers who speak with the distinctive "local flavor" they soon begin to compare notes about where they used to live - with the expectation that all homes were once within a bike ride from each other, and now many families, if not all, have moved at least once in the last 30 years from the city's central area to some distant, formerly obscure, suburban spots.

(China Daily October 24, 2008)


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