Ads for Imaginary Buildings Highlight Lack of Real Development Ads for Imaginary Buildings Highlight Lack of Real Development
Design

Ads for Imaginary Buildings Highlight Lack of Real Development

by Alissa Walker

September 27, 2010

Every neighborhood has one. You know, the vacant, dilapidated building that has sat empty for a year or more, completely neglected—except for that fading developer sign with a sleek architectural rendering promising some new and exciting edifice set against a bright blue sky. A building that, of course, has still not materialized. Wouldn't it be amazing, thought writer Rob Walker (no relation to me), if signs like these could be produced to highlight the ignored real estate in a city? Hypothetical Development is a new project founded by Walker, Ellen Susan, and G.K. Darby that's looking to do exactly that for New Orleans.

Still, the idea that such a rendering could rally local residents around an ignored piece of real estate is not so far-fetched. Perhaps this street art project could turn into authentic grassroots activism. "I do think it would be great if the project drew attention to some of these under-used spaces, and something real happens as a result," says Walker. "But really, our goal is probably more modest—just to inject a bit of intrigue, engagement, and pleasure into a corner of the built environment that's otherwise overlooked."

The images will be featured in a New Orleans gallery at the end of their neighborhood run. Check out the website (a beautifully-rendered parody of a real estate developer site) for more information, and watch for the signs to debut this December.

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Ads for Imaginary Buildings Highlight Lack of Real Development