This Place is not a Place of Honor


When everybody gets to be a princess:

Located approximately halfway between Istanbul and Ankara, the empty town consists of hundreds of almost identical castles in various states of completion. Developers meant for these uniform villas to be luxury vacation homes for wealthy tourists when they began construction in 2014. However, when the company went bankrupt in 2018, investors pulled out of the deal which put construction on hold. The development cost a cool $200 million to build thus far. But instead of a grandiose, multi-million dollar retreat, Burj al Babas has become something out of a dystopian novel. [...]

"We only need to sell 100 villas to pay off our debt," said Mezher Yerdelen, deputy chair of the Sarot Property Group. "I believe we can get over this crisis in four to five months and partially inaugurate the project in 2019."

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10 Responses:

  1. I am reminded of Chandlers Landing, a failed real estate scam and artifact of the S&L scams of the late 80's.

    A sea of half finished condos graced the shore of Lake Ray Hubbard in suburban Dallas County, until they magically burnt down, all on their own.

  2. the hatter says:

    A key skill of managing grandoise plans like this, you never want to let things accelerate away from you else you Lose Control

  3. Jeff L. says:

    Apparently, half completed construction due to failed financing is common in Turkey. But the scale of this awesome.

  4. jrl says:

    This is, somehow, simultaneously; the most hilarious, the most obnoxious, and the saddest, thing I've seen in a long time.

    While watching the video I kept wishing that it was really a render, and not drone footage. "Please let this not be real", my mind quietly whispered to itself.

    • Karellen says:

      There just seems something so... desperate about them.

      They want so much to have personality, and to be refined and have a sense of grandioseness - but there are just so many of them, all identical, packed so closely together into such small lots, that it doesn't work at all.

      • thielges says:

        The developer certainly got their money’s worth from the architect’s fees. Amortized it probably comes out to be about ten bucks a house. They didn’t even bother creating a left/right mirror flip version of the blueprint.

        Also odd is that it looks like they haven’t yet installed the street utilities. In most tract developments the first step is to dig trenches and install the sewer and water pipes. Yet you can see piles of thick pipe across the site. Maybe that is left as a zinger for the home buyers. “Oh, you want utilities too? We’ll need to add a surcharge into the utilities development fund.”

  5. Pity they aren't selling them by parts or as a prefab kit.

  6. apm74 says:

    There are probably 100 equivalent developments across China.

    • johnb says:

      Only 100? Though in China they would not be left part finished, the country is awash with funny money being pumped into real estate as the govt does whatever it can to postpone the collapse of the banking system. The number of such developments in China is probably unknowable.

      Lots of videos of this development as all sorts of explorers have found their way there. It's even more horrific close up.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3cgNmmb2Ik

      • dzm says:

        I'd love to go exploring like that. But those people? They are horrible. So horrible. Is there actually a market for these kinds of videos?

        God, I feel so old.

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