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Report - Detroit Packard Plant (July 2011)

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by semisara, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. semisara

    semisara 28DL Member
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    There was only one other Packard Plant report, from 2007, and the place has been cleaned up but also fallen into more glorious disrepair since then. These were taken a few weeks ago when I made my yearly trip home to visit family.

    Some history: The Packard Plant is a 325,000 sq metre old automobile factory that lies on 40 acres of land smack in the middle of Detroit. Constructed around 1903, the factory produced vehicles until it closed in 1958. Unbelievably it still stands, stripped of all its copper piping and other precious metals by scavengers, and coated in layers of crumbling graffiti.

    The Packard Plant is enormous, and is arguably the troubled city's second most famous ruin, after the Michigan Central Station (which was used in the film Transformers 2, btw!). It was once estimated that the structure contained over 4,000 tires, though during our visit we didn't see nearly so many. At the top is the remnants of the "Garden of the Gods" installation by local artist Scott Hocking. Rumour has it the city has found the possible owner of the Packard Plant (although he's apparently under investigation for drug trafficking and money laundering), and are working on plans for the complex's demolish.

    Now for some photos:

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    Heading in, no need to worry about "access points" here...

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    Not so many tires, but sure more boats than you'd expect an auto plant to have

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    Walking across the infamous bridge that joins the two halves of the plant

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    Rather than count the old tires in the building, I think someone should come and count the penises. Seems to be a graff favourite. None of the toilets had any pieces of porcelain left; virtually the entire building has been stripped.

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    Very creepy, and no I didn't touch it.

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    All the way up on the second floor.

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    Creepiest room by far. Detroit has a history of problems with dog fighting rings. Glad this spot seems to have been disused for a while.

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    Some of the newer graff was actually pretty good. This one addresses Detroit's recent influx of young, white middle classers.

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    Heading to the Garden of the Gods

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    Penis.

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    Looking out into the garden

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    On paper Hocking's installation sounds poncy, but once you're up there you really feel the vibe that originally inspired him. It's pretty massive.

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    Dusk begins to settle on downtown Detroit.. time to head out because you don't wanna be inside after dark!

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    As a derelict building, the Packard Plant is such a shell that the rush of trespassing and fun of wandering around and seeing the remnants of life has literally been stripped away. Conversely, the level of decay here is so advanced that at times it feels like you're walking thru another kind of ruin, and it has a certain level of ghostly excitement about it.

    Seems like the other threads about Detroit and the Packard Plant are all kinda old. I recommend a visit for every urban explorer, but know that the locals aren't hugely in to outsiders coming in to make "ruin porn". I lived in the city for the first 18 years of my life and people still sniffed at me this time around when I made suggestions of urban exploration. Remember that Detroit is not all blight, guns, arson and drugs. It's no more dangerous than any other large American city, but the locals are much friendlier!!:cool:
     

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