Founded by the Russians, Dalian boasts a wealth of architectural history. But now its treasured buildings are marked for demolition – and the government is being sued. One student went to capture the area before it disappears
Sitting on the Liaodong Peninsula in north-east China, the second-tier city of Dalian has a complex history. Transformed in 1898 from a small fishing village into a major port city under Russian rule, Dalian passed into Japanese hands in the 1930s before falling under Soviet control after the second world war. In 1950, the USSR handed the city over to the Chinese government.
Dalian’s cityscape reflects this history, with Japanese and Russian architecture surrounded by gleaming new commercial skyscrapers. One of the most famous examples is Russian Street, originally called Engineer Street.