deserted suburban housing development

The so-called economic downturn has hit here harder than most places, resulting in a remarkable half-constructed community. A grid of barren streets, a cul-de-sac to nowhere and in the middle of it all a nearly-abandoned strip of abnormally nice-looking houses centered on a circular roundabout.

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deserted economic downturn homes

Finding these cheery homes complete and picture-perfect (though unoccupied) is almost stranger than it would be to see this entire set of suburban streets and plots were utterly deserted, photographed here by Justin Sullivan.

deserted suburban desert homes

This housing development in Rio Vista, California, was set to feature 750 new dwellings – now each home punctuates the home of dozens of others. Street lights ridiculously line each street and pristine concrete curbs wrap sidewalks and medians, serving their normal functions of mediating between streets and residences – only the latter is lacking, and the landscape has been left to return to dust.

deserted homes aerial pictures

It seems hard to believe that there is no one with the motive and means to make something of this would-be set of suburban homesteads, yet everything is in place, the land plotted and ready for development, and yet … nothing is inhabited. Half-finished subterranean wiring and plumbing connects much of the multiple square miles of groomed space. Who knows, maybe someone will at least squat in the deceptively invited model homes at the heart of it all. Nothing short of an economic upturn (or u-turn, if you will) seems able to save this unique and chilling place.

All abandoned places have a sense of eeriness to them, whether they’re beautiful old European estates slowly crumbling into ruin or deteriorating homes slowly being retaken by nature. But there’s something extra disturbing about an entire ghost town in which the houses never even appeared, let alone were occupied. It almost makes it feel as if an alien spacecraft came along and beamed the whole neighborhood into another galaxy. For more photos with this creepy vibe, check out this abandoned village of Disney castles in Turkey.