Biggest Ghost City on Earth Overcharges Any Buyers
|March 18, 2014||Posted by Staff under Economic Principles|
This 2014 excerpt of Grist, Mar 13, is by Holly Richmond.
Ordos is an epic ghost town. Ghost city, to be precise — the largest in the world. Sitting in the middle of a desert in northern China, Ordos was intended to be the Vegas of Inner Mongolia.
The Kangbashi district, planned to accommodate a population in excess of one million, is home to 20,000 people — leaving 98% of this 355-square kilometre site either under construction or abandoned altogether … a glamorous and nearly empty airport, the rickety corpse of a sports stadium, an unused mosque, and a ghostly downtown. The hotel minibar has peanuts, booze, and gas masks.
Deadlines weren’t met, loans went unpaid, and investors pulled out before projects could be completed — leaving entire streets of unfinished buildings. The ridiculous cost of accommodation put off many would-be inhabitants, so that even fully completed apartments became difficult to sell.
Ed. Notes: Build it and they will come? Well, not exactly. This is a good example of what value is. Things don’t have value, even big things like cities. Rather, people value things. Value is a verb, not a noun, essentially.
Therefore, because value comes from people, and land comes from none of us, then who should get its value? If those who get it are those who create it, and if they get it from those who own the land, then owners would be compensating those whom they exclude from a part of earth, earth being our common birth right. (Of course, each owner as a resident would likewise be compensated by “hers” neighbors.)
How much would owners pay as land dues to their community? Depends on how much demand there is for their site, how much those excluded value the site. In a ghost town, not much if anything at all. Another nice feature of this geonomic arrangement of dues-in-dividends-out is that it could replace taxes and subsidies. Becoming a tax-free jurisdiction might change any place from being a ghost town to a booming city!