UFO Houses, Ruins of the Future, now just a memory [30 Pics]

UFO Houses: orange

UFO Houses: Orange

Sanzhi Pod City – abandoned two years after it was begun, it lay abandoned for 28 years before finally being torn down.  Up until that time, it was known as the mysterious “ruins of the future”. Photo Credit: Cypherone

Introduction

The weird and wonderful Sanzhi Pod City, or UFO houses (on account of their flying saucer-like shape), was an abandoned resort complex in Taiwan. Pod City was marketed as a holiday resort for U.S. military personnel posted to East Asia.

The original idea for the UFOs came from Sanjhih Township plastics manufacturer Yu-chou Co. The first construction license was issued in 1978 and the idea for the design came from Matti Suuronen, an architect from Finland, but construction stopped in 1980 when Yu-chou went bankrupt.

Unfortunately his company went bankrupt in 1980 and the project work was stopped. Efforts to revive the project didn’t succeed. There were several accidents which many superstitious said were due to damage to some Chinese dragon during construction activities. Many also felt that the area was haunted. End result was that the entire township was abandoned, left uncompleted and soon became a ghost town.

Ultimately the buildings were scheduled to be torn down in late 2008, despite an petitions to retain one of the structures as a museum. It is understood that this was not agreed to and work on demolition began on 29 December 2008. The following images are a tribute to the UFO Houses in Sazhi, or the Ruins of the Future.
[35 Pictures]

Hint: Use the “j” and “k” keys to jump from one picture to the next.

UFO Houses: yellow

UFO Houses: yellow

Photo Credit: Jill’s colorful world

UFO Houses: common area pool

UFO Houses: Common area pool.

Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: view from inside

UFO Houses: view from inside

Due to its unusual architecture and reputation as a ghost town, its fame soon spread and it became a tourist spot but the decay continued. Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: common area pool

UFO Houses: Common area pool

UFO houses (aka pod houses) were a set of abandoned pod-shaped colourful buildings in Sanchih (or Sanzhi), Taipei, Taiwan. Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: reflection in broken window

UFO Houses: reflection in broken window

Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses decay

UFO Houses decay

Soon after, the project was abandoned in 1980 due to financial losses, lack of investment and a number of deaths during construction.   Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses inside decay

UFO Houses inside decay


Left to the mercy of time and vandalism, the deserted Santzi Pod City found itself on the tourist map because of its wacky architecture and other-worldly appearance. Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: HDR

UFO Houses: HDR

During its dereliction, Sanzhi Pod City has served as the subject of a film and been used as a filming location by MTV.  Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: view from roof

UFO Houses: view from roof

Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: interior decay

UFO Houses: interior decay

Photo Credit: Cypherone

Pancaked UFO House

Pancaked UFO House

Legend has it that the doomed resort and associated loss of life can be attributed to a Chinese dragon sculpture that was disturbed in order to widen an approach road during construction.  Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: Gray sky

UFO Houses: Gray sky

Others suggest the site was once a burial ground for Dutch soldiers, when the Netherlands established Taiwan as a colony after 1624. Photo Credit: hsuyo

UFO Houses: Landing pad for alien kids?

UFO Houses: Landing pad for alien kids?

Photo Credit: Jill’s colorful world

Reflecting upon UFO Houses

Reflecting upon UFO Houses

Long a curiosity for people driving along the north coast between Tamsui and Keelung, the “UFO” houses as they are known locally — a group of freakish looking, brightly colored, run-down buildings that were once supposed to become a holiday village — made the headlines recently following the Taipei County Government’s decision to demolish them. Photo Credit: Hsuyo

UFO Houses: A bit spooky looking

UFO Houses: A bit spooky looking

These odd, circular, frisbee-shaped houses remind many people of UFOs, hence the name. Prior to being torn down, the site was often used as a location for photographers because of its unusual atmosphere and beautiful coastal setting. Photo Credit: Jill’s colorful world

UFO Houses: red alien skylight?

UFO Houses: red alien skylight? 

Construction work on the compound was never finished and the site has been abandoned for nearly 30 years.  Photo Credit: Jill’s colorful world

UFO Houses: without windows look a bit like pink pacman

UFO Houses: without windows look a bit like pink PacMan

Photo Credit: Jill’s colorful world

UFO Houses: not much privacy

UFO Houses: not much privacy

There where oft-heard rumors that many people have seen ghosts near the complex or the high number of unexplained traffic accidents on the nearby road. Photo Credit: Jill’s colorful world

UFO Houses: pacific sunset

UFO Houses: pacific sunset

One of the designers behind the UFO houses said that there were lots of rumors about the site, but most of them were false: “First of all, the site is definitely not haunted”. Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: broken pipeline

UFO Houses: broken pipeline

There were also rumors that more than 20,000 skeletons were discovered at the site when construction work began and that it was the scene of several murders. Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: Balcony views

UFO Houses: Balcony views

“It is traditional in the construction business to pay your respects to any spirits at the site of a new project before you start work. It had nothing to do with the ghost stories.” Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: beautiful ocean views

UFO Houses: beautiful ocean views

Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: red sunset

UFO Houses: red sunset

Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: dusk

Earth from the ISS: Lake Powell and South Western Colorado

Photo Credit: Hsuyo

UFO Houses: ocean view

UFO Houses: ocean view

Photo Credit: Jill’s colorful world

UFO Houses: once majestic

UFO Houses: once majestic

Photo Credit: Cypherone

UFO Houses: collapsed ceiling

UFO Houses: collapsed ceiling

They found that each UFO consisted of a reinforced concrete construction covered by fiber reinforced plastic. Earthquakes could damage such a construction and cause leaks and there was no way to fix such problems. Photo Credit: Cypherone

Nothing remains of the UFO Houses

Nothing remains of the UFO Houses

Despite an online petition to restore one of the buildings as a museum, Sanzhi Pod City demolition work began on Dec. 29. 2008  Photo Credit: Cypherone

Google Street view of UFO Houses

Google Street view of UFO Houses

Photo Credit: Google

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