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Hong Kong neon fades into history

The switch to cleaner, cheaper LEDs has taken a bit of shine off the city's streets

The main road in Hong Kong's Mong Kok district is ablaze with neon and other signs in this 1999 photo. The city's shift away from neon lighting has changed the character of the streets -- some say for the worse. (Photo by Keith Macgregor)

HONG KONG -- After nearly three decades, the warm glow of the green and red Hop Hing Hotpot neon sign dimmed into the evening darkness one final time before the 4-meter board was carefully dismantled by several skilled laborers, meeting the same fate as dozens of other Hong Kong neon signs.

With the illuminating signpost gone, the street looked unremarkable to Yuen Siu-yam, the owner of the Hop Hing Hotpot restaurant.

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