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The Sanzhi UFO houses (Chinese: 三芝飛碟屋; pinyin: Sānzhī Fēidiéwū), also known as the Sanzhi pod houses or Sanzhi Pod City, were a set of abandoned and never completed pod-shaped buildings in Sanzhi District, New Taipei City, Taiwan. The buildings resembled Futuro houses, some examples of which can be found elsewhere in Taiwan. The site where the buildings were located was owned by Hung Kuo Group.
Construction and abandonment
The UFO houses were constructed beginning in 1978. They were intended as a vacation resort in a part of the northern coast adjacent to Tamsui, and were marketed towards U.S. military officers coming from their East Asian postings. However, the project was never completed in 1980 due to investment losses and several car accident deaths and suicides during construction, which is said to have been caused by the inauspicious act of bisecting the Chinese dragon sculpture located near the resort gates for widening the road to the buildings. Other stories indicated that the site was the former burial ground for Dutch soldiers.
The pod-like buildings became a minor tourist attraction due in part to their unusual architecture. The structures have since been subject of a film, used as a location by MTV for cinematography, photographed by people, and become a subject in online discussions, described as a ghost town or "ruins of the future". The houses are referred to in the title of a track on the experimental German pianist Hauschka's 2014 LP Abandoned City.
The buildings were scheduled to be torn down in late 2008, despite an online petition to retain one of the structures as a museum. Demolition work on the site began on 29 December 2008, with plans to redevelop the site into a tourist attraction with hotels and beach facilities.
By 2010, all of the UFO houses had been demolished and the site was in the process of being converted to a commercial seaside resort and water-park.
Blogger's Blah Blah. This topic was so bizarre that it cried out for an equally bizarre treatment, so I began to make animations, some of which freaked me out so badly I found I couldn't use them. (Maybe I'll post outtakes later on. Or not. A director's cut?)
There is a slight cheat here. The yellow structures in some of the gifs are likely Futuro houses, which I don't even want to get into. They look UFO-ish in the most classic My Favorite Martian sense, with evil portals all around them that stare like malevolent eyes. My God. There are some of them left in Taiwan, most of them rotting away, but the original Pod City has been demolished and is (supposedly!) no more. If this were the X Files, Scully and Mulder would be on it by now.