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On Detroit’s east side, just off Jefferson Avenue, we found a curious old plant. The ground floor was crisscrossed with dead end hallways, and the roof was so covered with sheds and outcroppings as to give the entire structure the appearance of a castle. This is an HDR shot of one of the few hallways that had a way out at the end.
I had a really hard time placing how long ago Chandler was shut down. It was very obviously an elementary school and oddly enough I suspect it was closed because it was too small for the neighborhood’s needs. Just up the next block a shiny new elementary school had a teeming play lot full of shouting, shrieking little humans enjoy recess. It made for an odd experience; hearing the sounds of children playing while wandering a trashed and abandoned school.
The room in the building we explored was the gym, with climbing ropes still intact. It actually took a little doing to find it, as it was tucked away behind the main building and connected by a neglected hall. We actually made it down to the basement first where we found more evidence that overcrowding was an issue here as several basement rooms had been converted to classroom use. But the gym was still more interesting, as while I’ve seen some massive floor failures before this one was the most interesting.
Like most of our Detroit finds we found this school simply by driving past it. Where the last school building I posted about was pretty wrecked and had been emptied of most everything this one still had a lot of books and supplies that had been left behind. More importantly, there was very little graffiti here and there murals were almost untouched.
One thing I loved about this building was that they never installed drop ceilings here. Too often these older buildings get infested with drop ceilings because it is slightly more expensive to heat a room this tall, but Chandler School never did.
One of the weirdest features of this elementary school were the leather bound doors to the class rooms. It is one of those things that you don’t expect to see, much to see so many of them in fairly decent condition. They had to be original to the building which just makes it all the more impressive to me.
Same location as Idiot Photographer’s previous post. Judging by the aluminum and cinder block design, I’d guess it was built sometime around the 1960′s. Not an exceptional find, but it did have the feel of a sci-fi movie set in places.
I can only imagine the lurid fascination with which the schoolkids must have regarded the derelict hospital adjacent to their classrooms. Reality seldom compares to teenage fantasy, but should any kids have sneaked into the hospital, they would not have been disappointed in what they saw.
Sometimes we come across a location that seems like it is full of promise and we walk away with next to nothing, this building was one of those. It was very obviously a school of fairly modern construction and it had been beaten to hell in the time that it has been closed, walls were torn down, doors were totally gone, spiders had spun massive webs across the hallways and there was very little of actual interest to be found. On one level this is somewhat hilarious, because a couple of years ago we would have been thrilled to find a location like this. Now that we’re a little more experienced we were disappointed. However I did find one thing that justified our time in this building.
In the auditorium the glass wall and windows were destroyed long ago, nature’s hand has reached in to pull the tiles loose from the floor and in some places turn individual tiles into little islands of moss. Some of the more ambitious islands are sprouting a few weeds too.
I find moss endlessly fascinating, and I cannot fathom why it has so wholeheartedly taken over only a select few tiles while leaving almost all of the rest pristine. Nature