History of Chinatown Aesthetics

Chinatowns that are known all over the world can easily be recognizable with their unique pathway that is designed to stereotypically be of Chinese origin. The story behind these urban landmarks can be found in the early 20th century in the state of California. In 1906, a devastating earthquake struck the city of San Francisco which demolished Chinatown. During that time, racist laws and violence towards Asians were at an all time high, and the earthquake gave way to many homeless Asians. But from this destruction came an idea to preserve Asian culture and heritage: a new architectural design. From this concept, buildings were remodeled to change Chinatown into a place of trading and tourism. The plan worked as the styles of the new San Francisco Chinatown paved the way Chinatown presented itself in cities all over the United States. In a way, this attractive design was an image of something that was not only Chinese but American as well.


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