wechat_bg

2020-08-26 11:14:08

Wednesday marks the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone in the southern Guangdong province. The sprawling city opposite Hong Kong has become a symbol of China’s reform and opening-up era. To commemorate the occasion, Sixth Tone has selected a series of photos that highlight Shenzhen’s dramatic evolution from 1980 to 2020.

The first explosion before further construction in the Shekou area of Shenzhen, Guangdong province, July 1979. The blast marked the beginning of China’s reform and opening-up era. He Huangyou via Shenzhen Art Museum

The first explosion before further construction in the Shekou area of Shenzhen, Guangdong province, July 1979. The blast marked the beginning of China’s reform and opening-up era. He Huangyou via Shenzhen Art Museum

A view from a street in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1980. Leroy W. Demery Jr. via Flickr

A view from a street in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1980. Leroy W. Demery Jr. via Flickr

A busy road in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1993. A poster of Deng Xiaoping is visible in the background. John van Hasselt/Sygma/People Visual

A busy road in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1993. A poster of Deng Xiaoping is visible in the background. John van Hasselt/Sygma/People Visual

A statue of Deng Xiaoping at Lotus Mountain in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, June 2020. People Visual

A statue of Deng Xiaoping at Lotus Mountain in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, June 2020. People Visual

People ride bikes on a street in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1980. Leroy W. Demery Jr. via Flickr

People ride bikes on a street in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1980. Leroy W. Demery Jr. via Flickr

Young people walk in a commercial district of Shenzhen, Guangdong province, July 24, 2020. Su Dan/CNS/People Visual

Young people walk in a commercial district of Shenzhen, Guangdong province, July 24, 2020. Su Dan/CNS/People Visual

A view of the under-construction Shekou Industrial Zone in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1981. He Huangyou via Shenzhen Art Museum

A view of the under-construction Shekou Industrial Zone in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1981. He Huangyou via Shenzhen Art Museum

A view of Shekou Industrial Zone in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, June 18, 2020. People Visual

A view of Shekou Industrial Zone in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, June 18, 2020. People Visual

A view of Shennan Avenue in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1983. He Huangyou via Shenzhen Art Museum

A view of Shennan Avenue in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1983. He Huangyou via Shenzhen Art Museum

A view of Shennan Avenue in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, Aug. 15, 2020. People Visual

A view of Shennan Avenue in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, Aug. 15, 2020. People Visual

A view of Huaqiangbei area in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1981. Tang Benchi via Shenzhen Art Museum

A view of Huaqiangbei area in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1981. Tang Benchi via Shenzhen Art Museum

An aerial view of Huaqiangbei, the electronics and manufacturing hub of Shenzhen, Guangdong province, Aug. 23, 2020. People Visual

An aerial view of Huaqiangbei, the electronics and manufacturing hub of Shenzhen, Guangdong province, Aug. 23, 2020. People Visual

A view of the construction site of Diwang Mansion in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1994. Xiao Quan via Daken Art Center

A view of the construction site of Diwang Mansion in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1994. Xiao Quan via Daken Art Center

A view of the top of Diwang Mansion in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, July 26, 2019. Wang Guanxiao/People Visual

A view of the top of Diwang Mansion in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, July 26, 2019. Wang Guanxiao/People Visual

A man anxiously watches a monitor at a stock exchange in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1992. From Daken Art Center

A man anxiously watches a monitor at a stock exchange in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1992. From Daken Art Center

People in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, March 2020. People Visual

People in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, March 2020. People Visual

Editor: David Paulk.

(Header image: A man talks on a cellphone in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, 1993. Tom Stoddart/Getty Images/People Visual)