I'm fascinated with urban exploration, but one of my focuses recently has been anywhere urban that's falling apart. The greatest city to crumble in America in recent years has been Detroit (for the obvious reasons).
I find the photos coming out of there so facinating that I'd love to enlarge the pic's and cover a wall with them. There's something particularly ominous about unattended buildings in an urban setting as compared to the occasional decaying farmhouse. Their purpose was so dynamic in their heydays that its a sort of prophetic indicator of times to come when they're at a permanent standstill. In the countryside, the plant life and animals might take it over and engulf it. In the city, it remains a teetering reminder of the dead that haven't yet been buried.
This site is a rich resource of photos people have taken of places that were once inhabited by masses and now look like a scene out of that "Life After People" show.
There are empty theaters, schools, housing complexes, you name it. I love this picture above, an empty school. I did some photography of a little red school house abandoned in Pipestem, WV. I was first and foremost astounded that the school was disinhabited and they left behind the early computers, sewing machines, tons of books and supplies. No wonder our schools are poor. It seems to me that could have been redistributed, not locked up for decades in an unattended building.
Sometimes, the fancy theaters and ostentacious churches just remind us of our fixation on spending our cash on building grand places as if they somehow define how grand we ourselves are. Later, when they're vacated, they're like the empty shell of a once beauty queen in her latter years after a hard life, a little too much liquor and cigarettes. You can see the structure of what might have been symmetry and balance, but are now left with a sagging hint at its earlier glory.
So, enjoy the site and the amazing pictures. It will really make you shake your head at man's lack of planning and waste, but it will also fill you with images of the ghosts of what it once was and what might today be haunting them...