Saturday, March 6, 2010

Abandoned Las Vegas



Did you know Las Vegas actually beat out Detroit as most abandoned city?

1. Las Vegas.
2. Detroit
3. Atlanta.


It makes sense. The car industry took a nosedive which hurt a pocket of workers in one major city, but all the Americans are retreating from gambling their money away and the excesses associated with what I considered to be the single nastiest town in the country. I can say this because I’ve been there several times and each time I was more and more disgusted. The design of the city is basically on the main strip which one cannot travel by car—it’s a parking lot. The side streets are even shadier than the main strip and the sidewalks are crowded and smell of stale beer and urine. The air is completely brown and gritty to breathe. You just feel sick the entire time you’re there. The casinos are in dark scary cave-like rooms. Yeah, I love the dark, but the lack of knowing what time of day it is might work to the casino’s advantage (you often seen people on their 12th beer at 8 am at the slot machines, not knowing it’s morning yet). The vice is palpable everywhere in the city and you literally cannot ever get away from the sweating drunken crowds and bright lights (oh, my eyes ache thinking about the nonstop assault on the senses).

So, now that you know how I feel about Vegas, let’s check out why it’s been abandoned (other than people sobered up and realized what a shithole it is). It’s a chain reaction, really. Places like the Boardwalk in NJ could handle the recession much better if you think of it logistically. Las Vegas is smack dab in the middle of nowhere USA (hell, it’s an hour and a half drive to the nearest neighbor, the remote Area 51). You have to book a flight and a lot of other expenses incurred to stay there including the shows which are astronomical to attend. NJ has it easier, everyone has a one to two-hour drive and they’re there. With the huge real estate boom there, lots of mortgages fell through. People couldn’t afford the town any longer and many were losing jobs due to less tourism. It all snowballed until the town was emptying out faster than a kegger party when the beer ran out.

In fact, things are so bad there, many have taken to living in the flood control tunnels that run for 200-plus miles! With an El Nino season like we’re having, that’s pretty horrifying. There are easily hundreds of people pocketed in little parts of the tunnels where they’ve squirreled away furnishings and all sorts of decorations to make a home. Living in the desert, I honestly would rather bury my house underground. I’m thinking temperatures are probably pretty moderate, but cleanliness and rain flooding—big issues. They’re on their own down there with their own cobbled weapons. The cops won’t come unless they’re called, so there’s no patrolling. Many of the occupants have chronic issues with substance abuse and mental illness which can make it even harder for families forced to live there and a lot of families have had to seek shelter there when losing homes. Imagine sleeping in your car when it’s 110 outside?

In nasty dirty world of Vegas, those folks used to the caverns of casinos must find the underworld in the storm drains to be a close second. Some day, it will be amazing to tell the next generation about how times were so bad people lived underground in one of the most profitable cities in the country. Apparently, that cash doesn’t trickle down to the storm drains.

14 comments:

  1. Oh, wow. I didn't know there was a subterranean homeless city in the tunnels under Vegas. I mean I've definitely seen people living in tunnels before but not to this extent. And it's weird you mentioned this. I just finished watching "The Soloist" (a definite cool movie for writers) which is about the homeless but it's based in L.A.. Honestly, Vegas never really appealed to me (except to maybe pull an Oceans 11 sized stunt!). But honestly, Criss Angel aside, it just seems like it would reek of sleaze with no intellectual or even artistic draw whatsoever. The only thing it has going for it is its gangster history but even the buildings where the old time mob once ruled are mostly gone. I've had this urge to go road tripping out west sometime. Vegas is not on the list.

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  2. You know, I'll give Vegas this--if you have ADD and big dreams, it's a perfect world. Highly distracting and kind of like the mac-daddy of sensory "vibrators"--it just sort of dulls everything after a while. It does have a few points I can pick out that are intriguing. Some of the spots try really hard to keep the Rat Pack feel to them from the 50s and you feel like you stepped back in time. Totally weird. Then, you turn the corner and see New York and a giant amusement park and gondolas and a pyramid within a few blocks of each other. Then, the neon comes on and...Their ad campaign is all wrong--what happens in Vegas does no stay there--I can't imagine anyone leaves without a few exotic STDs and some weird unexplainable rashes... Ick! I'm not anti-people, but honestly my idea of a getaway is a real getaway--a cabin somewhere, a lonely cold beach. That's no vacation. You leave there feeling like you need a month off in a quiet cell.

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  3. i've never felt too drawn to vegas, either. my bro's son us out in scottsdale at the 'family condo' this week & i guess he and his friends awre driving over to vegas for a few days...but then...these guys are mid-to late 20's...that age is adventurous anyway!

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  4. Hey Libby;
    I used to live in Scottsdale--went to Chaparral High. One-thousand times better than Vegas--even though it's desert too. I always say, the only place I'd hate to live more than Phoenix is Vegas.

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  5. awwwww.....autumnforest, i hope you get a chance to get back over here to the "green trees & grass" side of the us!

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  6. Hey Libby;
    You live in one of the prime states for haunting. The states around you are all super haunted. You lucky gal! Yeah, I really need to get myself moving on getting a business going and getting published. I would love to just hit the road and hang out in my old haunts again. My ultimate dream is to get a perfect ghost hunting team together to go back to Aspen Grove and try to contact the soldiers and my dead family members who swore they were going to haunt it. Now, that's the ultimate! So many places to hunt!

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  7. I did a blog about those underground tunnels. I was surprised on how many people have made them their homes. Those tunnels are so dangerous and can flood at anytime. Personally, I couldn't live in those or any tunnels because of being claustrophobic. It looks like we have to take a road trip to Las Vegas too. Since it is a long drive, we just may have to stay the night, lol.

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  8. Julie;
    Wanna stay in a tunnel? Hee hee. Actually, I've been wanting to make girls' road trip up to Virginia City, Nevada. I have a cousin up there that keeps telling me "you gotta come here!" Of course, Ghost Adventures really brought notoriety to the place with the original documentary that started their tormenting series. I'm definitely intrigued by the crusty old western towns. They have a residual that's like nothing I've ever felt anywhere else. I think the godawaful dry hot weather preserves energy longer...

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  9. When we lived in Phx we used to meet up with the in-laws in Vegas 2x a year. I loved it. (Because I was young and it was exciting, we had a free place to stay and it was as the bigger casinos were being built so it was fun to see each outdoing the last.) And when my sister lived there we'd head up to see her quite often. But she lived in the Burbs, which is where a LOT of abandoned homes are now from what I understand. That town got hit hard when the financial crunch hit. If you stay on the Strip it can be fun, but it's not as glamorous as they make it seem on TV, that's for sure. I feel bad people are living in the tunnels, especially since as you pointed out one big rain can wreak havoc fast out west. So many people die in the canyons and arroyos each year due to not realizing how fast and hard waters can run once rain hits. Neat article.

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  10. Atlanta???????

    I need to go read about this... I did see something on TV about t6he people living in the storm drains under Vegas.... but Atlanta (Hatlanta)....wonder what is going on there? I've been to Underground Atlanta but it was back in the early 70's.....

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  11. @Eloh;
    I have the Atlanta post ready for tomorrow.

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  12. Vegas today is really the worst city ever in terms of its people, the ugliest urban sprawl, it's polluted, it's dirty, tons of drugs,and a horrendous educational system,ohh also our culture? LOL NONE, absolutely NONE, IT DOESN'T EXIST HERE. I can go on and on about this shithole. There is not one positive thing to say about this place. It's disgusting from head to toe. The greed that put Las Shithole into this depression is totally deserving. This town (and it's 2011 now) has not improved at all. It's gets uglier, dumber, and dirtier year after year. The depression this town is in WILL stay this way for another good 10 years plus. The jobs are gone, the owners are all cocksuckers, and Las Vegas had been crowned last year as the dumbest city in America in terms of its population. Do yourself a favor and either A) move out of the state(which I am doing next month) B) if you were considering about moving here, I highly recommend that you don't . Besides the stupidy all you will ever see in terms of the women here are 18 year old little girls dating 65 year old men for money and money only . The women here can be described as the most disgusting group of shallow fucked up cunts that I have ever met. I mean jesus the owner of the palms hotel is what almost 50 and he is fucking a 21 year old. What is sick perverted Daddy Daddy Daddy..... I would compare him to that other old pedophile Hugh Hefner. That rich pedophile can't even seem to find a girl at least in her 30's. what a sick fuck. Thats how the majority of all women here: Cunts plain and simple. So there you have it, one opinion of Las Shithole: the dirtiest, dumbest, ugliest, most perverted, drug induced , pedophile laden shithole that rules in terms of attracting every piece of scumbag loser that crawled here from whatever previous shithole they lived at and infested this desert town make this place even a bigger shithole.

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  13. anonomous you hit it man. I could have not said it better. Glad there are blunt truthful people here still. I have been here for 2 years and thats enough for me. The girls bro ohhh yaaa money hungry cuntholes. I never met such god aweful , flakes in my life. you are right LOL anonomous about the hot girls here I see that alot actually here really really young 17 18 year olds going out with Old and I mean OLDER guys.. Makes me sick . You call thia place "Las Shithole" haha I will add to that 'Las Pedophiles". whatver rumor that was about that owner from the Palms what a fucking loser. He can get anyone in this town and he chooses the daddy(pedo) daughter relationship. I have seen a photo of him .. He looks like a short bigfoot, not that goodlooking at all ...good thing he has money, casue thats the ONLY reason he dates the youngies who are gonna grow up and be Cunts like you say... Or you can call them Cunts in Training lol

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  14. Las Vegas will soon be a great city for urban exploration (urbex) with the tallest building in town an abandoned 68 story ghostscraper, the Fountainebleue, squelettes (abandoned construction projects) like the Echelon Place and Summerlin Center, catacombs under the streets, retail carcasses (closed big box stores) and hundreds of derelict homes, stores and condominiums. Check back for web blogs pertaining to urbex in Las Vegas.

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