Table of contents:
- 1. Temple of the Sagrada Familia, Barcelona
- 2. Winchester House, California
- 3. Woodchester Mansion, England
- 4. Temples of Angkor in Cambodia
- 5. Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York
- 6. Shame of Edinburgh, Scotland
- 7. Palace of Soviets, Russia
- 8. Ryugyong Hotel in Pyongyang, North Korea
- 9. German stadium, Germany
- 10. Skyscraper Szkieletor, Krakow
- 11. Sathorn Tower in Bangkok, Thailand
- 12. Plaza Rakyat in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
From stately churches, temples and homes built to protect from spirits, to national monuments and breathtaking skyscrapers, these unfinished buildings all have their own unique stories behind why they were never completed. Some of them are still under construction and some have been completely abandoned. But virtually every one of them could become one of the most beautiful buildings in the world if they were ever completed.
1. Temple of the Sagrada Familia, Barcelona
The first stone of this massive church was laid in 1882 and construction continues to this day. The construction of the Sagrada Familia is scheduled to be completed in 2026, and all of its decorative elements should be finally installed by 2032, a full one hundred and fifty years after the foundation was laid, with all construction costs funded through donations and ticket sales. Basilica tours are a popular activity when visiting Barcelona, Spain, and visitors are encouraged to spend time scrutinizing the façade for cleverly hidden biblical images.
Architect Antoni Gaudí took over the planning of the Gothic church in 1883, in its second year of construction. From that moment on, it became his life's work, until he passed away in 1926. The original plans were used throughout the process, but some adjustments were made gradually, as most of the architect's documentation was lost when the militants destroyed his workshop during the conflict.
2. Winchester House, California
In the mid-1800s, Sarah Winchester, the wife of rifle maker William Wirth Winchester, turned to spirituality to cope with the deaths of her husband and young daughter. The medium told her that the spirits of those who were killed with Winchester rifles were responsible for their deaths, and in order to avoid a similar fate, she had to move to the West and start building a large house for herself, and until the house is fully completed, she will be safe.
The home, located in San Jose, California, began construction in 1884. Workers continued to add strange and mostly unnecessary details and additions until 1922, when Sarah passed away. Winchester's beautiful Victorian Mystery House is today a museum where visitors can take a guided tour of an extremely bizarre layout. There are secret passages, staircases to nowhere, and strangely shaped rooms built in an attempt to get rid of the spirits or at least hold them back.
3. Woodchester Mansion, England
The Woodchester mansion in England is not as simple as it seems at first glance. From the outside, it looks almost like an ordinary old mansion. But once you get inside, it becomes clear that the construction was never completed. Construction on the Victorian-Gothic home began in 1855 and continued until 1873.It was made from local limestone, with vaulted stone ceilings that were unique to that time period.
Since the house still lacks floors, it allows visitors to actually see how the houses were built at the time. Construction eventually ceased due to lack of funds. Despite the fact that the mansion was never finished, it still contains a lot of beautiful details, especially in the chapel and on the facade.
4. Temples of Angkor in Cambodia
The Angkor Temples in Cambodia are a World Heritage Site and a significant part of Cambodian history. Ta Keo Temple is one of the main temples that you can visit by purchasing a special "temple pass" so to speak, but the building was never finished. It is also the only temple entirely built of sandstone, and due to political instability at the time (around AD 1001), construction was halted before it even reached the finishing stage. Most of the other temples built at the time (including Ta Keo's impressive neighbor, Angkor Wat) were adorned with detailed and beautiful carvings, statues, and other adornments that centered around the Hindu faith.
Ta Keo is a structure with many spiers and levels, but no other attributes. Tourists are free to roam inside if they have the courage to climb the extremely steep temple stairs.
5. Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York
Despite the fact that the Cathedral of St. John the Divine is not yet completed, it is a fully functioning Episcopal Church. The cornerstone was laid in 1892 and construction continued at a steady pace until World War II.
Back in the 1920s, it was assumed that construction would be completed in about seven hundred years, but it seems that this will never happen. Most of the work carried out during the twentieth century was restoration. Even the temporary domed ceiling has survived, despite plans to replace it with a spire. However, the building is open and services are held here every Sunday.
6. Shame of Edinburgh, Scotland
The Scottish attempt at greatness has failed miserably. The National Monument, known locally as the "Shame of Edinburgh", was to commemorate the fallen Scots in the Napoleonic Wars of 1803-1815. Building on the Parthenon, the monument would make Edinburgh the Athens of the North.
Unfortunately, only about 1/3 of the necessary funds for the project were raised, and all this had to be abandoned in the 1820s. Today, locals and tourists alike can walk through the ruins, which consist only of a foundation and twelve majestic columns.
7. Palace of Soviets, Russia
Russian architectural ambition was a sight to behold in the 1930s. At that time, Moscow was a kind of center of modern architecture, so the project of the epic Palace of the Soviets was destined to become a modernist miracle.
A competition for the design of the Palace was held in 1931, and work began in 1938. The plans were extremely extravagant - nothing like this had ever been seen. It had to be so high that it reached the clouds, with a 328-foot statue of Vladimir Lenin on top, “brushing” the sky. According to the Daily Beast, the Palace was also supposed to have about one hundred and fifty elevators and sixty-two escalators … there should also be a library with a huge amount of books (about half a million).
Like many construction projects around the world during this period, World War II thwarted Russia's grand plan. In the end, in 1957, when only the foundation was laid, the plan was completely scrapped.
8. Ryugyong Hotel in Pyongyang, North Korea
The Ryugyong Hotel in Pyongyang, North Korea, has a mysterious atmosphere since its early days.The massive hotel (one hundred and five floors) was supposed to be the largest in the world, but never opened its doors to guests. Despite this, it is rumored that people saw the light at the top of the pyramid.
Construction on the hotel began in 1987 and continued until 1992 when famine, drought and economic crisis wreaked havoc on the country. Work resumed in 2008, but the completion date can only be guessed at. In 2011, builders received $ 30 million in monetary support from Egyptian investors to complete an exterior very suitable for the pyramid structure.
9. German stadium, Germany
The German stadium, construction of which began in 1937, was one of the largest projects of Adolf Hitler. It was supposed to be located in Nuremberg, Germany, and was supposed to accommodate about four hundred thousand spectators.
When Hitler was told that the size of the object did not meet Olympic standards, he replied:.
The project was abruptly stopped in 1938 due to the outbreak of World War II, and the only part that was completed was the pit. However, in a small town near Nuremberg, Akhtele, a test stadium was built to test the acoustics. The surviving old columns and walls received the status of historical monuments, although they have long been overgrown, and some Germans would like to forget about them.Today, tourists can easily visit the same foundation pit where the stadium was supposed to be, the stadium, which is now known locally as a lake Silbersee.
10. Skyscraper Szkieletor, Krakow
Construction began in 1975 and was halted in 1979. Since then, the building has been empty, the rooms that were supposed to become offices and television studios have remained completely empty. Over the years, the building changed owners several times, and they all did nothing with it, but only used a twenty-two-story frame to hang massive advertisements. There are also rumors that the building was bought by a new owner and is likely to be renovated or demolished soon.
11. Sathorn Tower in Bangkok, Thailand
A victim of the 1997 Asian financial crisis, the unique Sathorn Tower in Bangkok, Thailand is a powerful reminder of what could have been. Somehow the building is still beautiful in its own way, with rows of jagged balconies for wealthy travelers to rest and admire.
Although the building looks almost normal from the outside (it was about seventy-five percent completed), if you look closely, you can see that many of the internal structures are missing, and the floors are left open.
Today it is a popular destination for urban explorers. Local ghost stories also tend to scare off some people, but most of them seem to be unafraid of the scary stories and continue to explore the unfinished building.
12. Plaza Rakyat in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Plaza Rakyat is a mixed use building in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It was one of many abandoned buildings in the aftermath of the Asian financial crisis of the 1990s. Work slowed down and then completely ceased in 2007, but construction was actually due to resume in June 2017 after construction companies approached interested investors.
Continuing the topic of architecture, read also about what secrets are kept Roman Colosseums existing around the world.
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