Empty, falling-down houses have always kind of fascinated me. I spent my childhood summers in rural Southern Illinois where they were fairly common. My grandparents had a nice little house that sat next to an old abandoned one, and I could never resist peering through the windows. I remember the furniture still sat there in the exact same formation, year after year, as the roof caved in and the front porch collapsed around it.
The site 100 Abandoned Houses is bringing attention to the problem of vacant properties in Detroit. It features a gallery of heartbreaking photos like this one and explains that the city’s population has fallen from about 2 million to less than 800,000. “With such a dramatic decline, the abandoned house problem is not likely to go away any time soon.”
Laura Berman of the Detroit News says, “The abandoned house is Detroit’s mythical beast. It’s a dragon you can’t train — or slay.” Even though the city has been demolishing about 1,000 broken-down houses a year, they can’t keep up. Some estimates claim 33,500 empty houses remain. That’s just mind boggling to me.
Are abandoned and falling-down houses a problem where you live?
Here are a few links if you want to learn more:
- “Feral Houses”
- Abandoned Houses Fix Hasn’t Come
- A Haunting Video Tour of Neighborhoods Lined with Empty Houses
(Thanks to Cindy for the links!)