Ruins of the Second Gilded Age in the New York Times


Edgar Martins via New York Times

We have been discussing Whither the McMansion, wondering about their future; their present is equally troubling. The New York Times sent photographer Edgar Martins across America to document "the physical evidence of the real estate bust." It is an appalling scene of excess and waste.The Times writes of this particular home:

The developer of this abandoned model home, Michael Roberts, chief executive of Charlevoix Homes, intended to turn a 35-acre former alfalfa farm into a community of 92 luxury houses, with prices starting around $500,000. During the boom, Charlevoix Homes grew to 32 employees; it was recognized in 2006 by the state's small-business association as one of the "50 Arizona Companies to Watch."

He is now bankrupt. More at the New York Times, via Andy Revkin, who asks:

Are these portraits, perhaps, of the end of the age of unfettered consumption, simply a short pause before human communities resume their 150-years-and-counting fossil-fueled sprint, or a foretaste of Alan Weisman's 2007 thought experiment, " The World Without Us"?

More on McMansions:

Whither the McMansion? Opinions from the Wall Street Journal and the Atlantic
9 "Green" Monsters: Can a 15,000 SF Mcmansion be Green?

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