Intense development in China has brought in challenges that urban areas have to face, and usually what make the ugly sight beneath the glitter of cities. Beijing based photographer Sim Chi Yin‘s series The Rat Tribe takes us to an underground city beneath the city of Beijing. On an estimate, nearly a third of Beijings 20 million population lives in this dark underground city.
Development and lure of Beijing brings in people from all around China to the city, where the astronomical land and property prices drive these low paid unskilled migrant workers into the city’s basements and air raid shelters. There they live, paying monthly rents of 300 to 700 yuan ($50 to $110) and in partitioned rooms that measure seven to eight square meters.
Some of the rooms are small enough to be termed closets, being barely wider than a single bed. The conditions these people live in has afforded them a very unkind moniker of being the “Rat Tribe.” The series is currently on view at United Photo Industries in Brooklyn till June 22.