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The Ghost Parcels of El Paso (makeloveland.com)
31 points by rmason on Apr 17, 2015 | hide | past | web | favorite | 13 comments

There are a number of similar "developments" in the area. North of El Paso is Timberon, NM. It was a single ranch that was subdivided into 9000 parcels in the early '70s to try to create a resort community. Most of the roads were built (not paved), but there are around 200 homes among all the parcels, and if you watch Otero County's unpaid taxes auction every year it is almost all Timberon properties, even though an undeveloped property is usually about $15 a year in taxes (I own an acre up there.)

Also east of Deming, NM (about an hour from El Paso) is a fairly large "town" called Akela with Only a few houses and a fairly large grid of streets, most of which were never built.

Wow, that is a sad, sad Google Maps satellite view. Also, strangely, Google has about 1500 feet of street view data only on the central stretch of road in the town.

Same thing in Rio Rancho, NM (just north of Albuquerque, NM) by the western edge of the mesa. Interesting areas back there to explore.

This is the back story for the Mamet play "Glengarry Glen Ross." For those who haven't read it, it's set in a real estate boiler room where salespeople are pitching lots in developments like this one -- selling the dream of owning a piece of the West to suburb dwellers in New Jersey.

Not a terribly unusual phenomenon, even in the much more densely settled east. On maps of the Pine Barrens of New Jersey, for example, you can find the ghosts of old land developments that never existed, or were only partially built and then abandoned. The street names remain like ghosts in century-old data.

There are vast ghost neighborhoods in Southern Florida near me, all paved and marked but have only a handfull of houses scattered throughout.

They are ridiculous fun to bike through.


More at "The Compound"[1] 200 miles of roads in Florida with no houses, no street signs, and no power lines. The layout makes it easy to get lost and hard to get out. North Las Vegas has similar areas.

[1] https://www.google.com/maps/place/27%C2%B056%2708.0%22N+80%C...

These types of small plots of land are on eBay selling right now. http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=texas%20land

I grew up in EP, my grandfather was a builder and actually my ex inherited a parcel in horizon. It was a huge land scam back then. It is still trying to be developed.

Do you think it'll ever be developed?

There was a lot of this in Palm Springs in the 1960s too. My grandfather fell for it. (Classic doctor who didn't invest well, back in the day.)

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