Kowloon Walled City, in Hong Kong, had more than 300 high-rise apartments and an estimated 33,000 people crammed within the site
Families with young children, who played on top of apartment buildings, lived among gang members and drug addicts in the slum
The settlement was essentially lawless due to a territorial dispute between China and Hong Kong, but both sides agreed to demolish it
Food processors freely admitted that they moved into the city to benefit from the low rents and to seek refuge from health inspectors
A postman ducks under pipes and cables as he delivers mail to residents who lived along a rat-infested alley covered in rubbish
Law Yu Yi, aged 90, lived in a small and exceptionally humid third-floor flat off Lung Chun First Alley with her 68-year-old daughter-in-law
The former Chinese military site became an urban settlement after Japanese forces retreated during World War II and squatters moved in
Airline passengers had a stunning view of the walled city when the flew into Hong Kong’s Kai Tak Airport, which closed in 1998
A resident upset with compensation protests on the pavement in front of Walled City during clearance operation by police
Residents of Kowloon Walled City had access to almost every kind of business or service, including hair salons and doctors
Hui Tung Choy operated a noodle business in the home he shared with his wife and two young daughters, who played in the workshop
Lee Pui Yuen’s store doubled as his family’s home. A shop was located at the front while a bedroom was on the other side of a partition
Supermarket owner Chan Pak, who sold everything from string to beer, had seven pet cats when this portrait was taken
A resident uses the only remaining natural ground well (left). An addict injects heroin into his leg (right)
Many buildings only received a sliver of daylight every day, including the Tin Hau Temple, which was constructed in 1951
Photographer Greg Girard captured jaw-dropping images of daily life within the six-acre site, including children playing on rooftops
Clocks, family portraits and a calendar are displayed in a family home (left). The city (right, at night) had a dystopian appearance
Life inside Kowloon Walled City, the most densely populated place on earth, was far from easy before the chaotic cluster of interconnected high-rise buildings was demolished 20 years ago.
Around 33,000 people lived in the overcrowded Hong Kong slum, which was blighted by poverty, organised crime, including drug dealing, gambling and prostitution, poor sanitation and inadequate services.
Populated by families, business owners, drug addicts and gang members, the settlement was essentially lawless due to a territorial dispute between China and British Hong Kong, but both sides agreed in the 1980s to demolish it and replace it with a park.
The former Chinese military site became a sprawling urban settlement after Japanese forces retreated during World War II and squatters moved in.
Over the following decades it fell under the grip of the Triads, who were eventually forced out in the 1970s, and was notorious for brothels, casinos and opium dens as it lagged behind the rest of Hong Kong, although crime rates dropped in its later years.
Before Kowloon Walled City was finally demolished in 1994, photographers Greg Girard and Ian Lambot spent five years capturing jaw-dropping images of daily life within the six-acre site – from children playing on rooftops to heroin addicts shooting up on the street.
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