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December 10, 2021

Amazing Black and White Photos of Hong Kong in the 1980s

1980s in Hong Kong marks a period when the territory was known for its wealth and trademark lifestyle. Hong Kong would be recognized internationally for its politics, entertainment and skyrocketing real estate prices.


Hong Kong’s population topped five million just at the beginning of the 1980s, and rose at an annual average rate of 1.3% over the next ten years. The additional 700,000 residents raised the population to 5.73 million at the end of the decade.

There were public outcries in the early 1980s over decreasing wages due to the large influx of mainland immigrants raising supply against demand. On the other hand, citizens of Hong Kong were beginning to emigrate to the UK, Canada and United States in large numbers due to the uncertainty of the handover in 1997. From 1980 to 1986, an estimated 21,000 people left Hong Kong permanently every year. Beginning in 1987, the numbers rose sharply to 48,000 people a year.

These amazing photos were taken by Dave Glass that show street scenes of Hong Kong in 1986 and 1987.

Chung Yeung Street at North Point, Hong Kong, 1986

Chung Yeung Street at North Point, Hong Kong, 1986

Chungking Mansion, located at 36-44 Nathan Road in Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 1986

High-rise residential housing, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 1986

Hong Kong tram No.68, Queen's Road, Hong Kong, 1986

Hong Kong, 1986

Ladder Street tea shop, Hong Kong, 1986

Ladder Street, Hong Kong, 1986

Local rope ferry in the fishing village of Tai-O, Hong Kong 1986

Mid-century multi-story housing, Hong Kong, 1986

Nathan Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 1986

Nathan Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 1986

Near Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, 1986

Outlying islands, Hong Kong, 1986

Passengers aboard the Star Ferry between Kowloon and Hong Kong, 1986

Passengers on the ferry to Lantau Island, Hong Kong, 1986

Passengers on the tram, Queen's Road, Hong Kong, 1986

Playboy Club, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 1986

Queen's Road, Hong Kong, 1986

Sheung Wan district, Hong Kong, 1986

Street scene in Wan Chai district, Hong Kong, 1986

Street scene, Peng Chau, Hong Kong outlying island community, 1986

Suit tailors in their Kowloon shop, Hong Kong, 1986

Tai O, Hong Kong, 1986

Tai O, Lantau Island ferry passengers, Hong Kong, 1986

Tram passengers, Queen's Road, Hong Kong, 1986

Tram passengers, Queen's Road, Hong Kong, 1986

Wan Chai district, Hong Kong, 1986

Wan Chai district, Hong Kong, 1986

Bamboo scaffolding, Nathan Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 1987

Hong Kong, 1987

Water taxi driver, Tai O, Hong Kong, 1987




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