1 of every 2 humans live in cities and this will soon be 2 of every 3. The city defines the quality of life of its inhabitants more than any other factor at a mass scale, and on the individual. The impact of a city is huge. From climate change to economic vitality to our very well-being and sense of connectedness. How a city is designed matters. Peter Calthorpe is already at work planning the cities of the future and advocating for community design that’s focused on human interaction. He shares seven universal principles for solving sprawl and building smarter, more sustainable cities.
Old abandoned mansions around the world! Once thriving castles, these old places are now abandoned! Located in Ukraine, Russia, Belgium and New York in case you are interested to visit them.
Muromtzevo Castle, Russia
The legend of this castle begins in the 1800s when a French and a Russian nobleman started arguing over whose country had the best architecture. After hearing the French nobleman go on and on, the Russian declared that he could easily Build a castle as magnificent as the ones in France. The French man said that if he built this castle he would go to Russia himself to see it and the bet was on. Colonel Vladimir Khrapovitsky went home and built Muromtzevo Castle.
5 years later he invited his French noble friends to his estate to visit his gothic castle. When they arrived they began complimenting him on his new home. “Oh no”, he said. “This is just the stable! The castle is a bit further!” The guests were amazed at the French style chateau complete with gardens and cascades. Khrapovitsky also built two schools and a church for the villagers.
When the Russian Revolution started, Khrapovitsky was forced to flee his castle and is said to have deceased in poverty. His beautiful creation was plundered and rebuilt in a way the owners would have hardly recognized. It was used as a college, and then a hospital, and then forgotten.
Pidhirtsi Castle, Ukraine
Built between 1635 and 1640, Pidhirtsi Castle has survived the trials of war and occupation. Part castle, part fortress, this castle has the reputation for being haunted. In the 18th century, one of the owners was said to have ambushed his wife because of his insane jealousy and had her body walled up in the basement. Known as the “Woman in White” she is said to wander the castle. A group of 20 Ukrainian psychics recently agreed that the place was filled with ghosts. Measurements of the electromagnetic field of the castle were off the charts, a pseudo-scientific sign for many that Pidhirtsi is most certainly haunted.
During WWII the castle was taken over and plundered by the Soviets until it was converted into a hospital for people suffering from sickness. A lightning bolt struck the building in 1956, Setting it on fire for three weeks straight, destroying everything left inside. It has now been converted into a museum, telling the story of the struggles of a region.
Miranda Castle, Belgium
Also called Chateau de Noisy, this castle in Belgium was Built for French aristocrats fleeing the French Revolution. In 1866, Count Liedekerke-De Beaufort commissioned English architect Edward Milner to design and build them a new home. Even though Milner passed away,
the castle was Completed in 1907 once the clock tower was erected. The Liedekerke-Beaufort family lived in the castle until World War II, when it was occupied by the Germans after the Battle of the Bulge which took place on part of the property.
In 1950, the National Railway Company of Belgium took over the castle and turned it into an orphanage and camp for sick children. This is when it was renamed Chateau de Noisy. It was too expensive to maintain and in 1991, the castle was abandoned. Parts of the structure were heavily damaged in a fire and most of the ceilings have collapsed.
In 2014, the family applied for and was granted permission to demolish Miranda Castle. In 2015, A group of investors intervened to stop the demolition and petitioned to have it included on the Walloon Heritage Conservation List. As of June 2016, the castle is in private hands and is listed as private property. Rumor has it that the family finally agreed to sell, but no one knows who has bought it.
Miranda Castle was used as a filming location for the American series Hannibal. In the show, this Belgian castle is portrayed as Castle Lecter in Lithuania as the ancestral home of everyone’s favorite cannibal.
Halcyon Hall, New York
The image of Halcyon Hall is Used by many paranormal investigators to represent haunted places but most people don’t know what or where it is. This rotting relic in Millbrook, New York was originally built as a luxury hotel in 1890 when summer colonies like Newport were popular. H. J. Davison Jr. spent a fortune on the Victorian Queen Anne style building with 5 stories and 200 rooms.
Unfortunately, the resort failed and Davison was forced to sell. It was then purchased in 1907 by May Bennett for her Bennett School for Girls which later became Bennett College. The school had been founded in 1890 in Irvington, NY but needed a larger home.
The Bennett School offered 6 years of education to girls from prominent families in NY.