Housing gone wrong

Timothy Egan’s excellent post about the McMansion suburbs (“slumburbia”) that were abandoned during this great recession brought back memories of this:

A year after moving to Bangalore my mother and I decided to look around and see what kind of real estate was up for sale in the city. We fixed on a budget and checked out the listings at various agents’ offices. At the time of course (around two years ago) getting a decent flat within that budget and near enough the city was next to impossible. We were taken by one agent into what felt like the western town set in a Hollywood studio lot – scrubland, empty buildings and dust, so much dust. Trying to think back to that day, I don’t think it was fear of any kind that dominated our emotions, but a kind of sadness. The sight of all those buildings still waiting for life to move in and animate them and the possibility of them remaining unoccupied, made one wonder what exactly has gone wrong with the 21st century vision of housing and urban development.

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