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Urban Abandonments
October 4, 2007 1:24 AM   Subscribe


 
What is up with Gary, Indiana? It's not out the boonies or anything... Have all the abandoned buildings been stripped of wire/pipes etc? (In Brooklyn this used to happen all the time, any building that was not occupied and looked neglected often got stripped. I heard a similar story about a building in Philly, where a crew of four-five guys had gone into an old factory and were living there while they stripped it out. My friend had an unpleasant encounter with them as they assumed he was trying to move in on their find.)

Cool lists.
posted by From Bklyn at 1:45 AM on October 4, 2007


Been to the Sanzhi Abandoned Spaceship Village many times, and even shot part of a movie there. It's kinda spooky, but Taiwan is full of abandoned developments due to chaotic land-use regulations.
posted by Poagao at 1:59 AM on October 4, 2007


A bit Count von Count?
posted by asok at 2:41 AM on October 4, 2007


7 Underground wonders totally ripped off every Indiana Jones movie, especially Last Crusade. what asssholes.
posted by greenskpr at 3:16 AM on October 4, 2007


I see no wonders on the list from any of the Indiana Jones movies, just a series of articles and amazing images in the theme of 7 Wonders but related to abandonments and legal urbex resources.
posted by derami at 4:39 AM on October 4, 2007


I really like the first link, but really hate the postage-stamp sized jpegs. Are there links to teh biggar?
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:09 AM on October 4, 2007


This post is cool. Does anyone know the name of the Italian village? What a shame.
posted by Tullius at 5:13 AM on October 4, 2007


Devils rancher, I've got a few pics of the ghost town (Bodie, CA) over at flickr. Actually, there's a *ton* of pics of that ghost town. The rest, i can't help you.
posted by notsnot at 5:17 AM on October 4, 2007


Ooh, lovely, notsnot!
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:26 AM on October 4, 2007


Devils: there are links in the post itself to the original sources for bigger images.

Tulliu: Looks like that town is called Balestrino
posted by derami at 5:40 AM on October 4, 2007


This post would have been truly super awesome if it featured three more links.
posted by localroger at 5:49 AM on October 4, 2007


Wow. Virtually every one of these could be a FPP on its own. A 45+ year coal fire? A 1500 year old fortress in the middle of a Siberian lake? Must explore more...
posted by GhostintheMachine at 5:54 AM on October 4, 2007


Buffalo Central Terminal is often considered one of the greatest abandonments in the United States. There's too many good Web sites devoted to the great train station to list.
posted by elmwood at 6:43 AM on October 4, 2007




My family drove to Bodie when I was a kid. I remember the road to get there was SOOOO horrible. I have this flash of sitting with my sisters in the back of the camper as it rocked back and forth with the road, trying to avoid a concussion from the pots and pans that were being jostled out of the cupboards above my head. By the time we got there, I don't remember as much about Bodie as I remember being thankful to have survived the drive and be out of the car.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:28 AM on October 4, 2007


Oppède-le-vieux. Oppede-le-Vieux is one of those towns in Provençe that came upon hard times during the 18th or 19th c. and was abandonded.

Conflicting reports indicate that the old town is cast into shadow during the late afternoon, but the entire Vaucluse region used to raise silkworms. These towns went fallow soon after Europe established dependable trade with the Far East, which caused many of these towns to die off around 1900.
posted by vhsiv at 7:49 AM on October 4, 2007


Balestrino is listed as having 535 inhabitants, which is not (IMHO) technically abandoned, but 'Movements in the earth’s surface made the original village dangerous to live in.'
posted by MtDewd at 8:22 AM on October 4, 2007


Poagao, you mind explaining how those assless baby pants work? Is it just for babies who are potty trained enough to use the bathroom, but not enough to pull down their pants?
posted by Citizen Premier at 8:48 AM on October 4, 2007


Bodie has a really nice paved road straight over to it nowadays miss lynnster . However you can still take the old stage road into Bodie from the north just outside of Bridgeport. You get a view of the whole town that most people never get as you crest a hill coming into it. I would not recommend taking a car on it though.

I highly recommended anyone traveling down 395 in the eastern Sierras to hit up Bodie.
posted by Big_B at 9:25 AM on October 4, 2007


Great post.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:04 AM on October 4, 2007


Woohoo, Detroit! They forgot to mention the old Tigers Stadium and the train station.

"What is up with Gary, Indiana?"

The last time I was in Gary, cutting back from Chicago through the dismal sprawl of tattoo shops, liquor stores and AME churches, we stopped at a gas station.

As I start to walk in, I notice blood on the pavement. A man comes out, carried by two women, and is set down in a lawn chair outside the gas station with a bunch of towels wadded up on his stomach.

We wait there, filling up, as the paramedics come, and I ask people what happened.

Apparently, the man had abdominal surgery that morning and was released, so he went to buy cigarettes. He came in, started hitting on the woman in front of him in line, when she noticed that he was dripping blood. He collapsed and they hauled him out, trying to stanch the blood. By the time we were all the way filled up, he'd bled out enough to totally soak two white towels, red as if they'd been dyed.

Then everyone stood around and watched him, moaning and bleeding. He'd popped his stitches, and between the blood on the concrete, blood on the gas station floor and blood in the towels, it looked like he'd lost upwards of half a gallon.

The paramedics said he'd likely die.

We got our gas, navigated back through the inept traffic direction of the Taco Bell employee, and left.

That's what's up with Gary.
posted by klangklangston at 10:44 AM on October 4, 2007


Whoa, this is really interesting, thank you.

Interestingly, one of the links to find out more about the places sends you back to Metafilter (eg).
posted by salvia at 10:53 AM on October 4, 2007


I live for this stuff. Thank you!
posted by Jess the Mess at 10:59 AM on October 4, 2007


When I lived in Philadelphia around 2001, one of my roommates broke into the old Naval asylum there. It was a place where former naval retirees could go and live out the end of their lives if they had nothing else. The building was demolished later that year, but before it was destroyed he broke in with a friend to have a look around.

He returned from the asylum with a plastic bag full of papers and documents he'd found strewn about. We spent a good deal of time over the next few weeks pouring over them. Some of the things we found were itemized lists of the possessions that were removed from the room of a deceased retiree. Some of them were dated as early as (if memory serves) 1914, but most were from the 20s and 30s.

The lists would usually look like this:
Pair of pants (2)
Pair of socks (2)
Pair of shoes, black (1)
Shirt, dress (2)
Undershirt (1)
Fountain pen (1)
Pocket knife (1)
Pocketwatch (1)

We also found a letter from one gentleman who was requesting a new pen from the asylum's quartermaster-type person (presumably he was writing with a borrowed one). It was really pretty haunting to go through all that stuff.

Thanks for this post homonculus, fantastic stuff.
posted by baphomet at 11:04 AM on October 4, 2007


So Gary, Indiana is just... somewhere between where you were and where you're going?

(So much of America seems like that: my girlfriend/wife and I were once a little north of Albany, NY, on our way to Montreal, and we stopped in what we thought was a quickie-mart/convenience store to buy some snacks and use the loo. The store didn't really work out as suggested by it's façade though. In fact, the further back in the store you went, well the lights only covered the first fifty feet or so, then the shelves ended, then there was the area where all the merchandise was, still on pallets, still wrapped in that super-saran-wrap, and then the linoleum gave way to dirt, with carpet in a few places (to cover the extension cords). This is where some older men were sitting around with an oil lamp (a genuine kerosene, Coleman, camping lantern (it was the middle of the day but the building, at this point merely a shed and barely that, looking up you could see the roofing tar weeping through the joints in the plywood underlayment of the roof, had no windows and it was really fucking dark) sitting in the middle of the table) as they read from and swapped newspapers in a language I have not seen but whose content I would have guessed originated on the Indian sub-continent). Back in the car, when I asked her about the 'loo, well, she just turned away and looked, with a sort of melacholy, out at the parking lot and the intersection beyond it. 'We should stop at a McDonalds or something?' I asked. She nodded, quietly, and when she finally turned she said, (well what she said was so banal it would realy ruin it, so suffice it to say - uh, the facilities were not exactly up to 'snuff').

Perversely, this is something I have always loved about America. Nonetheless, I might not ever make it to Gary.

/derail
posted by From Bklyn at 1:19 PM on October 4, 2007


Great post homunculus.

I can't believe there haven't been people moving into that abandoned village near Genoa. Could be the most beautiful squat EVAR! Maybe authorities are keeping people out? BTW, anyone know exactly where that is? Google maps?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:02 PM on October 4, 2007


Great post homunculus.

I can't believe there haven't been people moving into that abandoned village near Genoa. Could be the most beautiful squat EVAR! Maybe authorities are keeping people out? BTW, anyone know exactly where that is? Google maps?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:02 PM on October 4, 2007


Great post homunculus.

I can't believe there haven't been people moving into that abandoned village near Genoa. Could be the most beautiful squat EVAR! Maybe authorities are keeping people out? BTW, anyone know exactly where that is? Google maps?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:02 PM on October 4, 2007


Oh man, there's some weird shit going on with my computer this morning. Look at that! Posted thrice, all at 4:02! Crazy.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:03 PM on October 4, 2007


This FPP makes me want to go trespass somewhere.
posted by Cyrano at 4:49 PM on October 4, 2007


The ancient village of Balestrino (370 meters above sea level), set in a small valley in the Savona area, as declared unfit in the Fifties because of some presumed landslides phenomena.... The geological risk has never turned into a real danger, so at the beginning of the Nineties, the municipal administration was able to set up a plan for recovering the built-up areas. EURARC
posted by dhartung at 6:43 PM on October 4, 2007


Citizen Premier, those are so parents don't have to take off the pants of their children when they take them to the bathroom, they just hold them over the toilet (or just wherever they like) and let them go.
posted by Poagao at 8:14 PM on October 4, 2007


flapjax:

There was an abandoned village in Valencia (Spain), one of many, but what made this one special was that people were squatting in it, without power, telephone etc. They were living an old-stlye farming existence and everyone from the towns around knew, and were even proud of the young people who had moved there, since most of these villages are dying as their young people move to the bigger town as cities.

I have no idea about the legal situation with the land though...
posted by claudius at 10:39 PM on October 4, 2007


This FPP makes me want to go trespass somewhere.

Then there's the potential downside...
posted by salvia at 10:57 PM on October 4, 2007


Elmwood's lik to the wiki page on Buffalo Central Terminal led me to this. Some great stuff, here.
posted by Devils Rancher at 3:41 AM on October 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


I see no wonders on the list from any of the Indiana Jones movies.

Blaspheme!
posted by greenskpr at 3:48 AM on October 5, 2007


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