Let’s say you’re a city planner responsible for the development of a city whose principal gripes are income disparity, gentrification and small business support, and someone points you toward an empty patch of land in your city. What would you do with the space?
If your answer was “build a luxury condo,” you can honestly just show yourself out. These interactive sliders popped up on Property Shark this morning, and playing with them shows you just how depressing a condominium looks against the skyline. But it did set us thinking about what might be a better thing to put in its place.
Notorious eyesores like The Edge Towers and 338 Bridge are featured in Property Shark’s article, which credits luxury high-rises as giving “renters and buyers the opportunity to be part of one of the world’s hottest markets.” First of all, opportunity assumes affordability; the prices on condo units definitely don’t fall into that category. And as far as “opportunities” go, being a part of a luxury market isn’t exactly something we all aspire to do.
Instead of condos, those empty spaces could have been replaced by small business storefronts, new green spaces, or permanent flea markets. You know, actual infrastructure! Affordable units aside, condos are still part of a shameless movement that depends on delusion: inflating cost, then brand, then cost, then brand, then one, then the other, and on and on until we’re every single one of us priced out of single-family seven-story mansions, and all that’s left to do is die and maybe be buried in a luxury high-rise mausoleum with affordable units and a separate entrance for the poorer corpses.
Anyhow, that’s our piece. What would you do with an empty city lot, brokesters? Let us know in the comments section! Meanwhile, we’re going to go play with some far more entertaining sliders while we wait for the real estate bubble to burst.
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