(1 to 100 of 207 replies)
Special 10:38pm, 16 June 2005
I'm interested in seeing what people feel are the best 3 urban decay shots they have taken, and perhaps why they feel that way.

When you decide on your favorite 3, please post the thumbnails in this thread. Here's how (for those who don't know).


To post an entry photo, follow these steps:

1. Go to that photo's individual page
2. click 'All Sizes'
3. Click 'Thumbnail'
4. Scroll to bottom of page and find the second box which says: Copy and
paste this HTML into your webpage.
5. Select the code and hit 'ctrl-c' (or edit -> copy)

Then you just reply here and paste the code into it. Please only post the thumbnail or square version of the photos. No need for the larger versions.

I'm doing this in most of the groups I admin (based on the particular theme) so apologies if you're in many of them and I am giving you a headache.
1 3
(1 to 100 of 207 replies)
Great thread... I'll start.

1) Turret


This building is quite special to me. Located just blocks from my home, the 120-year-old Ransom-Gillis home is the epitome of Detroit's urban decay, and the symbol of Brush Park's olden glory.

2) Front Row

Front Row

This is in an area not too far from Detroit's downtown district, and is formerly an industrial park. Scary place, even in broad daylight. There was something about this chair, sitting and watching the building rot - waiting for an occupant.

3) Arson

2005/02/26: Arson

This might be less about Urban Decay than crime, but frankly, this old church has stayed this way since the February fire, and I can promise that nothing will be done with it for years. Located kitty corner from the spot where the old Olympia Arena stood, this church's embers were still aromatic when I shot it.

I have plenty more in my photostream if you're interested, and doing a simple search for 'Detroit' and 'urbandecay' (or similar) will produce some other wonderful Detroit-based photogs.
Thank you urban tiki. Great photos and nice stories about each. I edited the images to the thumbnail versions however, since there are many urban decay members and if many of them post here the thread would load so slow for people on dialup.
R. Michael MacLiotr 16 years ago
Ok, my first one is of an overgrown building in the middle of downtown New Orleans:
Mossy rooftop

Second is of the same building from above:
Mossy Rooftop, Revisited

And, third, is of some steps leading to an oddly abandoned building just outside of downtown New Orleans. There are flourishing businesses and fairly plush office buildings on all sides of this:
Steps to nowhere.

This is an interesting group. Cheers.
1. Abandoned Chair
old chair
This pic inspired me to start the new group Visual Poetry.

2. Broken Window with Bars
broken window
I made a pencil drawing of this same window about 4 years ago and it has changed little since then.

3.Sand Bags
These sand bags were just begging me to shoot them!
jamelah 16 years ago
here goes...

the door behind the movie theater:
fire exit
My office building is next door to the theater, so I pass this every day.

someplace that is now nonexistent:
do not enter
I'm not sure if I like this one because I like the picture so much, or if it's just because I liked that spot in town a lot (it had quite a bit of photo-worthy stuff) and I'm nostalgic because it's since been demolished.

house of shine:
house of shine
It's been like this for as long as i can remember, but I hear that once upon a time, it was pretty cool.
duncan 16 years ago
a disused nurses' accommodation block, now demolished.

people seem to like this one, and i do too. disused rail tunnel, see the photo page for the full story

3rd choice was hardest, but this one was quite recent so it'll do for now. St Peter's Seminary, a disused er, seminary (teaching college for priests). This is actually 2 photos, one normal that was too dark, one at a 1 second exposure that was too light, combined them together to get this.
It was difficult to decide on just three but I think that these images are really great. The first is a picture of one side of the somewhat famous steeple in Athens, Georgia. The church was torn down long ago but the steeple still remains standing.
The second image was taken in downtown Atlanta. I like that it looks like a building is there, but in reality only two walls actually remain standing. The third is from an abandoned turn-of-the-century powerplant in rural eastern Georgia. It was truly an amazing place to explore.

red facade two walls near parking deck. powerplant ruins
Special 16 years ago
I still haven't been able to decide on my favorite 3, but I have really enjoyed seeing everyone else's choices.
Special 16 years ago
Okay it was a hard decision but I finally settled on these three as my all time favs.

Urban Decay
I'll put these down as mine, for now.

All three taken in our area recently.

Home alone Rubbish bag Open window
special, you do challenge me. choosing my best stuff is weirdly tough. but, thanks! and, wow, what fun to see all of these shots.

i like when barbie got evicted
"when barbie got evicted," because of the bitter humor of the trashed toy home and the peculiar clock in the store window at knee level;
window to lost industries "window to lost industries," a sort of cathedral of decay that is probably a historic san francisco industrial building but will undoubtedly be allowed to rot until it has to come down, and
mural: going, going... "mural: going, going..." for the beauty of the chicano mural characters and the sorrow of their disinegration.

i think i like the pix that piss me off.
York 'sells' itself as a city of heritage and culture but although a wonderful place to live, the city fathers often forget the local people...

Pull up a chair

rubbish is illegally dumped on backstreets


... old buildings, often associated with long-gone industry or transport, fall into disrepair,

He didn't make it!

and areas become almost no-go areas that are difficult to escape from...
Urban decay is a major feature of many (most?) cities of India. Even buildings in good repair may look a bit moldy after a good monsoon. Old buildings/ neighbourhoods rarely get a facelift but they may get a coat of paint or some floral decoration. I like the colour and life amidst decay in these three pictures. They were taken in Ahmedabad, Old Delhi and Jaisalmer.

Hung out to dry Old Delhi Desert solitude
kyle stauffer 16 years ago
elevator motorbrokenglassbricks on the roof
Wananga 16 years ago
perpetual berry [deleted]
I've only been to one such location so my pool is a bit limited. However from that shoot I was most pleased with these three:

disused warehouse three windows overgrown

These are from two disused warehouses in London, just a short walk from some ultra-expensive apartments.
(michelle) 16 years ago
a quarter brick decline eldridge street synagogue

the first two are details from buildings in red hook, brooklyn. red hook has many deteriorating factories and warehouses, as well as numerous regular ol’ still-in-use dilapidated buildings.

the third is from the eldridge street synagogue which, after decades of abandonment, is currently being restored.
chicalookate 16 years ago
Auntie P 16 years ago
Boarded Up

Beauty through decay - an abandoned building.

Riverside House

Human anguish because of living conditions.

Bracket and Shadow Feb 05

Jocie's Marketno building in that buildingFurnished Apartment

The first one I feel like it really captures the feel of DC's upper Georgia Ave. The second one the juxtaposition of the happy, bright mural and the empty facade. And the last I like the incongruity of the hopefulness in the sign and the deteriorated state.
ylkatiejo 16 years ago
Covalent Chick 16 years ago
rustylock yellowdoor Drainage
Yer Sister 16 years ago
Here are three from my favourites:
rusted eye Red Alert Save Taiwan

I have a couple of other faves, but they either are not in this pool, or I couldn't grab the thumbnail!
Special 14 years ago
Bumping this up for the newer members. Was buried on the third forum page.
Darwin Bell 14 years ago
here are my three faves
i love this one because it is so gorgeous in it's decay, the cracking, layer on layer of paint and rust...
paint the mutha green
this is intense, it looks like a flaky pie crust of rust
layers upon layers of rust
and this wooden door amazes me
each one different
rustyjaw Posted 14 years ago. Edited by rustyjaw (member) 14 years ago
Here are my 3 favorites:

seal of approval
seal of approval
This is from the door on the side of a box car in Oakland, Ca.

This is from what I believe used to be the control rooms of a set of drydocks in Richmond, Ca. I'm not sure how long they've been out of use, but all of the rooms are in an amazing state of decay.

This is from the side of either an air-conditioner of some kind of ventilation system at the abandoned navy base in Alameda, Ca.
kotobuki711 14 years ago
Light Switch Decay Red
justbelightful 14 years ago
I am new to urban decay photography, being mostly into nature/landscapey stuff. But I have recently come across some really interesting sites, and I see its appeal. Here are 3 of my first decay shots:

break in


Bill(iudshi8uf) 14 years ago
Vietnam Water Ghetto Mekong Style


Vietnam from nega 4
modern language [deleted] 14 years ago


DSC_0092 14 years ago
these are my favorites. all from the Heppenstall Steel factory in my old neighborhood in Pittsburgh, PA

two by fours 1 color ingersoll_rand_1 five_brothers
iwobbly 14 years ago

this is found just next to the ultramodern and controversial frank gehry-designed paul allen-owned e.m.p. in seattle. part of the pathetic run down amusement park of the seattle center, site of the 1962 world's fair now very much neglected. the juxtaposition is a bit unsettling...


this is found inside one of the many preposterously large buildings the navy left behind at sand point in seattle on lake washington. its surroundings of desolation and isolation give the text added weight - as though you might be lucky to read it and still live.


this is found in portlands chi-chi district. formerly an area of printeries and warehouses it is now home mostly to financially overleveraged condo dwellers with small dogs and expensive taste and the fussy shops that service them. Again, the juxtaposition is striking.
tanakawho 14 years ago
I love rust.

Rust on a blue drum 1

Gas meter on a red wall

Punctured metal
ash966 14 years ago
strange fruit

I'm endlessly fascinated by bags in trees.


I like the contrast between the fall foliage and the rusty, graffiti-covered bridge.


Another scene of nature mixing with decay.
Dani3D 14 years ago
Shots of a huge abandoned prison at Madrid:

Leaving the jail.

Entre dos galerías.

invincible books [deleted] 14 years ago

Sattler Theatre, Buffalo NY
crostatavegan 14 years ago
this is a kind of hotel in my neighborhood. they rent rooms for students. or, at least, they try to do it! i always wanted to take a picture of this place, but i have never gone there with my camera untill that day.

one day i was feeling really bad and i took my camera for a ride in the city center. there, i found this beautiful beauding. there is a shop on the first floor (wich sells pans), but the second one is abandoned. this isn't the picture i took that day. a couple of months later, i went there another time and took this one.

this one is one of the first pictures i took with my camera. it shows two buildings that are tagged really bad in brazilian style of tagging. i love it. there's also a red bus, which is very common in my town (belo horizonte - brasil).
photographicgun 14 years ago
Elevated train in chicago shot with my TtV contraption.

Nesquik Fix
I shot this photo inside an abandoned housing project called Cabrini-Green in Chicago.

Forsale: One partially used pair of Levi's
I shot this photo outside an abandoned housing project in Chicago called Cabrini-Green. There was another housing project next to this building but it was occupied so we had to always look over our shoulder while shooting. The place was completely abandoned and we mainly hung around the outside and the first floor -- very surreal. The area reminded me of that movie 28 Days Later. Clothes, furniture, other items were scattered everywhere outside. Inside it was as though people just got up and left everything in 5 minutes.
envious carriage [deleted] 14 years ago
My favs change a lot but here are today:


I like the texture and the repetition of the posters

free violators

I like what it says, but more so I love the colors and the texture of the paint


This is my top fav. i love the colors. Love the typography. And I really love that black swash of paint interrupting the image.
dreary bells [deleted] 14 years ago
E M B A S S Y C O U R T - Wells Coates Art Deco Masterpiece once stood proud proud on Brighton's seafront in the UK. A modernist triumph that's just epic in proportion and gives some truely panoramic views of the seafront from it's once luxurious apartment windows.

Embassy Court Internal Court

Embassy Court Interior

Embassy Court Interior
metroblossom 14 years ago
The following three are my current favorites. A big part of that assessment is their scale and iconic nature, although they also match my current mood:

1. Auditorium Memorial Theater Lobby. Gary, Indiana.
Stairs and Lobby, Memorial Auditorium Building

2. Robert Taylor Homes, Public Housing Project. Chicago, Illinois.

3. R. Lavia & Sons, Inc. Building. Chicago, Illinois
R. Lavia & Sons, Inc.
gdiazdeleon 14 years ago
1. Stairs. Puebla, México.
Escalera VI

2. Door and clay wall. Xilitla, México.
Muro I

3. Church stone sculpture and wall. San Miguel de Allende, México.
Sin título VII (Untitled VII)
geo3pea Posted 14 years ago. Edited by geo3pea (member) 14 years ago
No 1 underpass smelling faintly of piss, didn't investigate the puddle too closely
Subway Shadows

No 2 I like the feeling that you have pass through the unknown to get out
Rooms inside

No 3 This one I just like, I am fascinated by the abandoned railway line not too far from where I live
Bike Cone Railway Lines
Nivad Posted 14 years ago. Edited by Nivad (member) 14 years ago

This is certainly my most popular, but for a reason. The lighting, composition, framing, all just came together nicely. The mangled machine in the foreground is perfectly balanced by the rusty walls in the background. I have another shot taken just before this one from a slightly different angle, and it doesn't work at all. New York, NY.


I like this one for the colors, the water drops just about to fall, and because nobody can figure out what the hell it is (detail from a NY subway station). New York, NY.

DC alley

It's the little bit of life that makes this shot for me. Decay and renewal. Washington DC.
kelley girl Posted 14 years ago. Edited by kelley girl (member) 14 years ago
Ally behind "hotel"
I loved the colors from the rust, to the brick to the fresh green paint to the burnt brick. Alley in Pontiac, MI
some caddy
Car abandoned at the Sears and Roebuck Warehouse in Pontiac, MI
What Once was...Now is...
The house is on the East Side of Detroit, most of the neighborhood has burnt down, crumbled or is in various states of neglect. The beauty and size of this home kept drawing me to it.
theeyeinside 14 years ago
These were taken in beautiful old Ybor City near Tampa, Florida. The city was originally a cigar manufacturing center, but now is home to trendy shops, boutiques and night clubs. However, many of the old buildings still remain, and there is still much urban decay to be found just off the main avenue. These are all closeups that I liked the details in, but I have some street scenes that I can upload later.



*vixpix* 14 years ago
A rare part of Manchester that hasn't been redeveloped.. yet

rusty bridge
Castlefield, Manchester, looking under a bridge, i love the rusty colours

In Mumbai, India. Everywhere looked so neglected but it had a kind of beauty
MJ² 14 years ago


Julia Elizabeth Groves 14 years ago



So the top 2 are in Encino, NM and the bottom in Pueblo, CO. I just drove 2200 miles from Phoenix to Chicago over the weekend and found a wealth of small town decay which I love just as much as the super urban stuff (which living in Chicago should supply much of). Hope you enjoy...
sabatoa 14 years ago
1. Broderick Tower Lofts

This is one of my favorite because the skyscraper, though beautiful is competely vacant and has been for decades. I hear they are restoring it though.

2. Broderick Tower

Same building, different shot. When I was admiring the building I realized that someone made the effort to get to the top floor and graffiti'd the crown. I was impressed.

3. GM Demolition

This is what happens when a car factory shuts down in the rust belt.
Jenny Leigh 14 years ago
Open To The Public Photomanip. General Merchandise Photomanip. Whitewash Photomanip.
Glenn Fox Posted 14 years ago. Edited by Glenn Fox (member) 14 years ago
This is a series of pictures I took of the old West Pier in Hove, the pier had fallen into disrepair, and during a drive to restore it, caught fire. More of it fell into the sea in subseqent storms. It's present condition has mystery and sadness to it, which I hope my pictures capture.

Hope you like

zerega 14 years ago
Angkor - Ta Prohm V

Angkor - Ta Prohm II

Angkor - Ta Prohm I

The Temples of Angkor.

This Khmer city had 1 million inhabitants around 1000 A.D. All wooden buildings are long gone. The rainforest conquered the remaining stone buildings thus slowing their decay. The 'discovery' by western archeologists and subsequent clearing of the temples of their plant cover put them to the elements and accelerated their disintegration. One temple was left as it was found, with all the trees growing through the site, supporting many walls and buildings.

See these images of Ta Prohm in the large version, there is much going on in the images that is lost in the thumbnail, small and medium versions!
. : lucia : . 14 years ago

Holga 06

Holga 05
Wondering what THE three favourites are would be torturous for someone as anal as me, but here's three OF my favourites :-D:

Everything just came together..

Because it's cute and existential at the same time ;-)

Because it's this decaying building at its most sensational -- though the scan quality is bad, apologies for which.
@ndr% 14 years ago
church two

Prayer al fresco!
@ndr% 14 years ago
cotton belt

Old train depot
radiotube 14 years ago
Nothern wall of Mould Loft in Versatile Shipyards. I love this one because of the instructions on the alarm. Pull way down and let go. Such wisdom and beauty in degeneration.

pull way down and let go

This was the oldest building on the same shipyard in 1994. The wood was absolutely gorgeous to behold. Long gone again. I took this shot from the stairs at floor level. The building was built late 1800's. I love old wood.
Shipyard Stores

Again, in the Versatile Shipyards, which have now made room for condos and a hotel. I really discovered the beauty to be found in ruins and decay.
never ends 14 years ago
my 3 favorite :

My friend reckons this photo is smashing! ;)

Urban Decay

An old boarded up house by some train lines.

Old House by the train line

The natural taking over the man made!

secret yoke [deleted] 14 years ago
Bridge Duotone

An old abandoned bridge near downtown Atlanta. Probably one of the coolest things in the city.


Not much to say on this one, I just like it.


Cool old bank building.
Ms D. Meanor Posted 14 years ago. Edited by Ms D. Meanor (member) 14 years ago
Takin a Nap
Homeless addict in Vancouver's downtown East side. I think that this portrays the juxtaposition between the 'well' and the 'not so well to do' in the city of Vancouver, which is fast losing it's middle class...

Gross Alley Sepia
Alley in the Downtown East side of 'Vancouver the beautiful'. I love the way that this shot turned out! It looks exactly the way I wanted it to when I took the shot. Simply put, 'Vancouver ghetto'.

Tenement in the Downtown East side (Vancouver BC)
I like this one because the fence is such a thin and flimsy barrier between me and this life...again, Vancouver's middle class is quickly dissolving. It's FAR too expensive for most people to live here comfortably any more.
vintagedramas 14 years ago
hi, i'm new to the group. these are my 3 favorite:

new orleans
from the window of the sheraton, new orleans

new orleans
on st. charles ~ always remember the mardi gras beads...

new orleans
there were big plans for this building before katrina. now it's just getting sold.
fair throne [deleted] 14 years ago
Lonely old tv set in an abandoned and partially demolished motel in Hollywood:

Close up of a beautiful old glass door knob on a well-weathered wood-frame door in Burbank:

Evidence of time on a dumpster loading dock in a back alley of Hollywood:

Sanctu 14 years ago
I found this in a back alley in Sorrento (near Naples, Italy) but had no idea how it got there. It didn't seem reconstructed, so it must have been boarded up from the other side??
Door in Sorrento, Italy
scottgeraci 14 years ago
new guy, here are my 3 faves:

Window and Wall

Unfortunately, I had to shoot this from about 150-200 feet away because the area is all fenced in. I would have loved to get closer but it's smack dab in the middle of a small downtown area and next to the courthouse. I love the simple geometric shapes in this image.


Same downtown area as the first image. Again, the simple shapes please me.

Four Windows

Again, I am drawn to the simple shapes. I also love the color of the building. i debated between this photo and a close up shot of the bottom right corner window but decided this photo better illustrated the urban decay. By the way, this building is for sale and I wish I could buy it! Three floors and over 10,000 square feet! and windows galore!
uela_team 14 years ago

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Abandoned N*** Housing

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Quiet Storm! 14 years ago
New Shop Before 100_1196 New Shop Before
M-u-z Posted 14 years ago. Edited by M-u-z (member) 13 years ago
French Quarter shops, Hanoi, Vietnam.
French Quarter

Urban decay of Hanoi's French Quarter, Vietnam.
French Quarter Shops

Window found in the French Quarter of Hanoi, Vietnam.
This Is The Sea 14 years ago
Not sure what to do but heaps of the Ubran Decay pictures have their thumbnail links disabled. Any suggestions?
four curtain [deleted] 13 years ago
A lost neko lay down on the tatami to die in the cold alone.

A danchi of lost life clings to its last television set.

A strange metal and glass machine invites people to question its forgotten and perhaps slightly creepy use.
TooLoose-LeTrek 13 years ago
Truth in AdvertisingHydrant HouseSitting Shotgun
Vince (VisualSense) 13 years ago
IMG_5398 Unusual Structure
jfmvaz 13 years ago
The yellow
Ghost house

The wall
Bergen Bryggen

and the floor
Stone floor
♥ Emma in Wonderland ♥ Posted 13 years ago. Edited by ♥ Emma in Wonderland ♥ (member) 13 years ago
My favourite three...

The Ditch:

The Ditch

The Skip:


The Boot:

The Boot
nondescript existence [deleted] 13 years ago
it's hard to choose because I love many of my decay shots ~sigh~ but here are three representatives taken in different cities in Israel:
from Tel-Aviv:
Door detail
from Acre:
Windows of Akko
from Safed:
Rusty green hinge
btw, I really enjoyed looking through this thread!
skooterdawg 13 years ago


Battery Mendel
crowley630 13 years ago
As a volunteer working to restore an historic graveyard, I deal with fallen tombstones all the time. But going down into a burial vaul to investigate a grave robbing, now that's something completely different.

Wirt Vault Examination at the Congressional Cemetary

Wirt Vault Examination at the Congressional Cemetary

Vault Shelves
anubus70 13 years ago
2304 LTV Blast Furnace
Heul_doch! 13 years ago


decay  #02

sora - rughe 03

venice 2006
marekfoto 13 years ago
Ruin (Baltimore)

A ruin behind the fence (Baltimore)

Two kids at the abandoned house (Baltimore)
amg2000 13 years ago
All three of mine were taken in New York City during the mid 1980s. M y reasons for liking these have nothing to do with urban decay...but the fact that this was an incredibly magical time of my life, many changes were happening in my life...and a still dirty, slightly dangerous city was the visual backdrop of that time of my life.

Buildings to be demolished-21st near 6th Avenue 1980s
Not sure this is really decay...these buildings weren't in bad shape. However, they are gone now. This takes me back to a time when this part of NYC (what is now called the Flatiron district) was dark and desolate. So much has changed, I miss that New York.

I lived on the opposite (good) side of Tompkins Square Park in NYC's East Village during the mid 80s (in a storefront). I paid next to nothing in rent...but I had bedbugs and rats. I lived across the street from a bar called Aztec...the kids would hang out in my doorway, I used to love to sit in the workspace in the front of my store and listen to their conversations. I also watched how everything to the east of the park was destroyed between 1977 aind 1989. This was not one of the best blocks to be whipping out a camera...but I'm glad I did, wish I had taken so many more. Hindsight is 20/20.

Lower West Side ca 1987
Lower West Side of Manhattan...not too far from Chambers St. At the time this was taken, there were maybe 3 buildings on this block...and in one of them you could see a sole light on...the entire block is now gone. I remember the year prior to this, my best friend Lisa and I would go to take care of her brother-in-laws dog while he was away on tour. I haven't see her since she moved to LA around 20 years ago...makes me wonder how she's doing.
Cyril.F 13 years ago
not in order,
but in first for the "decay"
La vérole

the second for the memory of the place, witch doesn't exist anymore
La paille de l'oeil du voisin

And i don't know if the third is one of my favorites, but it's my most recent picture
My Grand-parents' bathroom#1

All photos come from Marseille or just near...
gingher 13 years ago
This is in Baltimore, just East of the Harbor.

KevinEdge 13 years ago
OK, I haven't done quite as many decay images... but I guess I could call these favorites. Taken in Chicago, IL and Gary, IN :


Lala Lulu 13 years ago
Bart? als in Bartje?
als in van urbexforum?
Hotel Cadillac 13 years ago
Totally new to the scene.

loic_ 13 years ago
DDR souvenir

Stade des Charmilles

Lost moto...
Jalca Posted 13 years ago. Edited by Jalca (member) 13 years ago
The old house by the sea


The Alley</
aware pail [deleted] 13 years ago
Post-nuclear landscape and industrial dinosaur

Industrial shoot

masonic temple
Ardon LXXXIII 13 years ago
Old Office"67" alt="New day" />
Ardon LXXXIII 13 years ago
Clean up on Mahoning Ave.
Ardon LXXXIII 13 years ago
New day
flawless frame [deleted] 13 years ago
No return

aveteva1 Posted 13 years ago. Edited by aveteva1 (member) 13 years ago

modern fish [deleted] 13 years ago
Pacific Northwest represent.

Belt Alley


best winter [deleted] 13 years ago
Still a Home for some 2

What Happened??

Come on in!!!!
eholubow 13 years ago
Colorful Chair


Summer In the City
joodw Posted 13 years ago. Edited by joodw (member) 13 years ago
CMS stairs

CMS view

CMS sid lives
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