Changchun (7820 km from Moscow)
Changchun’s inhabitants call it a “new city.” A fishing village in 1800, Changchun was officially named by the end of the century and was heavily influenced by a Japanese military presence. The last Chinese emperor Pu Yi was installed here by the Japanese as a puppet leader for over fifteen years, until the end of WWII. Many of the buildings recall the era of Japanese control — hodgepodge structures with Japanese foundations and Chinese enclosures.
Changchun is no exception to the Chinese tendency to modernize through the organization of large, expansive cities. Renmin Road — the principal North-South axis — boldly strides through the center of the city. Past and present governmental buildings are situated along it, unable to break free from this municipal focal line.