James Wilkinson, deputy editor of Time Out Beijing, predicts what lies in store for the Chinese capital in the year 2062. The Chinese calendar swings around once more to the year of the fire-horse, its motto: ‘I control’. And despite being one of the world’s major political powers, the Communist Party of China is finding its control of Beijing challenged by a grass-roots organisation objecting to the planned demolition of the last remaining hutongs – the tiny alleys that once comprised the majority of the city but have been almost entirely replaced by soaring apartment blocks – and their accompanying courtyard residences. These courtyards, with their central heating, double-glazed windows and internal plumbing, were built to replace the centuries-old originals in the early 2010s, and represent one of Beijing’s last remaining links to its ancient past, since the temples and city walls were relocated, brick-by-brick, to an amusement park outside the city in 2023. Despite the opposition, the government will go ahead. As a concession, they promise to rebuild one block of hutongs exactly as they are now, but with improved amenities, so that future visitors to the city will be able to see what it was really like to be a tourist in the early 21st century. Elsewhere, the city’s fashionistas are celebrating the launch of the latest vintage clothing store. Fully 50 per cent of all shops in the city now sell exquisite antique and vintage European-style clothing, each beautiful item of which has been carefully hand-made from original designs by poorly-paid sweatshop workers in impoverished countries like Spain and Greece. Vintage clothing is particularly popular now because the muted browns and greys are less likely to show stains from the city’s smog, which grows ever thicker due to increased use of fossil-fuel-driven power stations outside the city. Plans to ‘go nuclear’ were deemed too expensive, even after contractors proposed using affordable MDF to house reactor rods; Godzilla sightings off the coast of Japan were the final nail in the coffin.