Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Ruins of the Metroplex - Part 1




A Detroit Mansion from the Gilded Age slowly decays


   I've always been fascinated by a website called The Ruins of Detroit. The city, which was once so beautiful, it was dubbed the "Paris of the West" began to lose both industry and population in the 1960's. Over the course of the next 50 years, over one million people moved either to the suburbs or out of the region entirely.  Entire neighborhoods have been abandoned, some even reverted to prairie. Skyscrapers, hotels, churches sit empty and deteriorate all over the city

   I've wondered about similar fate here in the metroplex. The decay of old Dallas is well documented. But what about other areas. We build newer and newer suburbs in far reaching cities like Allen and McKinney. What happened to the first wave of suburbia? 

   Though not nearly as extensive or devastating as Detroit, there are pockets of abandonment, so called modern day ruins. Buildings that haven't necessarily outlived their usefulness, they just happen to be built in a part of town that is no longer in fashion. 
A Downtown Detroit Movie Palace falls apart.

The Once Proud Michigan Central Terminal sits abandoned. Imagine if a new form of transportation was invented and DFW Airport was abandoned





The Ruins of the Metroplex - Garland Shopping Center


UPDATE:  Since this post was written, the shopping center has been torn down and a Wal Mart is being built in it' place. Below is the original post. 

   I first noticed this beautiful mid-century sign at the intersection of Garland Road and Miller on my way to old Downtown Garland. It's vast parking lot offer clues that it once served a bustling suburb that was romanced by the automobile.


    The only sign of life left is this lonely mailbox which sits in the middle of the development. A few weeks ago during the premier episode of the new show LONE STAR, I noticed the sign in the background. This empty mid century shopping plaza was being used as the set for a couple of grifters. A odd second life, for a once modern complex. (Ironically, the TV series was cancelled after 2 episodes)

    Side note: Though the shopping center is left to decay, the neighborhood of mid century ranch homes are in surprisingly excellent condition. 

Remnants of tile flooring from a row a buildings
I found the remains of a gas station. Here is where the pumps once sat. 

The Ruins of Detroit
Map to Garland Shopping Center



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6 comments:

Sharon said...

I'm so glad to see that someone else finds this kind of stuff interesting. My friends always ask me why I take such weird pictures. My favorites though are cemeteries.

Ben said...

I enjoy looking up pictures of old, abandoned places too. Check out pics of the area around the NY World's Fair, like these...
http://www.michaelrenjietom.com/nypavillion.html
-Ben Bradshaw

Dion said...

I also find urban decay interesting and I would love to go to Detroit for a visit. I live in Auckland, New Zealand and I am totally intrigued by whats happening in the States.

lart said...

I stumbled upon (ha!) your blog thru my google readers' Suggested Sites. I really enjoy the topics! Especially the one about the tandy ctr subway. That really wasn't so long ago, and I loved that as a quick way to get downtown.
Anyway, keep it up!

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Information Biter&Associates said...

Glad to know I'm not the only one. In that Garland Shopping Center, there used to be a JC Penney's, but that's the only store I can remember.