Gated communities seem to be appearing all over Guangzhou. According to Western literature, gated communities are mainly caused by fear of crime and are seen as a negative phenomenon, dangerous to the social aspects of city life. However, Chinese researchers have called for more attention for the Chinese context. This research has tried to find out to what extent fear of crime has influenced the development of gated communities in Guangzhou. After interviewing Chinese urban planners and inhabitants of gated communities, it is found that fear of crime can be seen as the main reason for the development of gated communities in Guangzhou. However, walls have been present in Chinese urban planning for centuries and are not perceived as negatively as in the West. Also, Chinese gated communities differ from their Western counterparts and can be seen as a collection of clusters (so-called zutuans) within one outer wall The area inside the outer wall is considered semi-public area and is often accessible to non-residents. Therefore, the Chinese context should definitely be taken into account when researching gated communities in China.