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Inside Hong Kong's lawless 'walled city' — the most crowded place on Earth for 40 years

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Kowloon Walled City was 119 times as dense as New York City.Greg Girard

Slightly north of Hong Kong Island there once stood one of the most densely populated places on earth.

From the 1950s until 1994, over 33,000 people lived and worked in Kowloon Walled City, a massive complex of 300 interconnected buildings that took up a city block.

Caught between China and the British-run Hong Kong government, the city was essentially lawless, equally known for its opium dens and organized crime as its dentists’ offices.

Photographer Greg Girard spent years investigating and documenting the strange place before it was demolished. Girard collaborated with Ian Lambot, another photographer, on a book about Kowloon, titled “City of Darkness Revisited,” available here.

Girard shared a number of photos from the project with us in 2015, and you can check out the rest at the book’s website.

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