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Chinese Sidewalks

A typical U.S. concrete sidewalkWhere I grew up in Philadelphia (and in fact in most places in the United States) sidewalks are mostly all just plain conrete.

Sometimes in very old parts of the city you will find red brick or coblestones or a flagstone sidewalk, but for the most part people walk on unadorned concrete.

What a pleasant suprise for me then when we came to China, to discover that plain sidewalks are very much an anomoly. Everywhere here sidewalks are paved with tiles.

Sidewalk tiles: Red and white polygons with incised hexagons - PuDong, ShanghaiLiJiang Sidewalk Tiles: Blue and  white  polygons with incised hexagons -  LiJiangShiYan Sidewalk Tiles:  Red hexagons with incised flowers - Shanghai

Kunming Sidewalk tiles:  Green and white  polygonsSidewalk tiles: border between polygons and  concrete blocks - KunMing

In the older (or less well off) areas the tiles may be simple textured concrete blocks, but even then they often in different shapes or have an interesting pattern inscribed on them.

Sidewalk Tiles: Kunming  cast concrete tileSidewalk Tile: Cast concrete tiles in DaLiSidewalk Tiles: Cast concrete tiles in Dali

In the more well off areas (or areas that are trying to give the impression of being well off) the tiles are often glazed in bright colors, and pieced in interesting patterns.

Sidewalk Tile: Glazed  circle/star patern - PuXi Shanghai Sidewalk Tile: Green and cream glazed  circle/star patern - PuXi Shanghai

Sidewalk tiles:  Red with yellow balls - KunmingSidewalk Tiles: White wiht red squares - KunmingSidewalk Tiles: Red and white glazed tiles with incised squares - Kunming
Beijing Sidewalk 1: Glazed red tiles with incised squaresChongqing Sidewalk: Glazed bricks, rectangles and squares - Chongqing

Beijing Sidewalk Tiles 3: Red glazed concentric circlesBeijing Sidewalk Tiles 2: Glazed red and white concentric circles
Chongqing Sidewalk Tiles 3: Red centered circles Beijing Sidewalk Tiles 4: a serpentine pattern
Sidewalk Tiles: Half Circles - Nanjing Road, ShanghaiShanghai Brick sidewalk: Large pieced red and white circles

Wuhan Brick Sidewalk: Red and gold wavy bricks in a double diamond patternBrick Sidewalk: White and green wavy  bricks in a  wing or arrow pattern - Puxi, ShanghaiSidewalk tiles: Green and white  squares  - KunMing

Sidewalk tiles:  Glazed snail shells, and  blind stripes - PuDong, ShanghaiJin Qiao sidewalk Tiles: Glazed red, green, yellow and white  snail shell pattern - JingQiao, PuDong, ShanghaiSidewalk Tiles: more glazed snailshells - PuDong, Shanghai

If you have any knowledge about these sorts of things (or pictures), please email me and tell me about it.


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