"End" | July Photo of the Month
 
This image was taken in 2009, a year or two after the effects of the economic recession became broadly felt. I was a senior in high school, looking out upon suddenly extremely bleak future prospects. College tuition was steadily climbing far out of my reach, acceptance rates had fallen into single digits at many institutions, and my parents were struggling financially. We lived in a well-to-do neighborhood in a suburb north of Sacramento. The city was an old railroad-town-turned-corporate-village. HP and Oracle had big offices there, and we were among the families moved to the city by corporate consolidation.

Big housing developments were getting underway around the corner from our house shortly after we moved in, in the early 2000's. They were your typical pseudo-rich mini-mansions popular during the time: 3 or 4 generic repeating designs, crammed together on small lots, stucco painted various shades of tan with just enough architectural detail and flare to convince the wayward buyer these were something special, and worth the astronomical sticker price. Over the years we watched as they put up their big logo'd signs along the road, as bulldozers flattened the ground, as one-by-one concrete foundations for models were laid, as the sales office opened. They built a good number of houses, sold many of them too. And then the recession hit.


Suddenly, construction stopped. The bulldozers and work trucks disappeared, as did the workers. Half-built houses sat upon their foundations, innards exposed to the elements. Vacant homes remained vacant, windows dark at night a contrast to their brightly lit neighbors. A road, the one pictured above, set to wrap around to the other portion of the development, dead-ended alongside the last row of houses to be built. It all stopped. It all ended. The fever-dream was over.

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July photo of the month. Photo taken in 2009, previously unpublished.

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