China's Latest Ghost Town: A $50 Billion Fake Replica Of Manhattan

Tyler Durden's picture

"They are building stuff that nobody really wants or needs... and there will be a day of reckoning" sums up yet another mega ghost city project under development in China. As NBC News reports, China's $50-billion knock-off of the Big Apple - near the port city of Tianjin, some 120 miles from Beijing - complete with its own Rockefeller Center and Twin Towers has been billed as the world's largest financial center in the making. But this Manhattan still has a long way to go...

Ian Williams explains nothing has improved in China since we last highlighted the ghost city phenomenon...


As NBC News reports,

China's $50-billion knock-off of the Big Apple sits on a river bend — much like its namesake — near the port city of Tianjin, some 120 miles from Beijing. Complete with its own Rockefeller Center and Twin Towers, it's been billed as the world's largest financial center in the making. But this Manhattan still has a long way to go.


A recent visit shows that construction that began in 2008 on the back of a massive credit boom unleashed in China after the global financial crisis appears to have ground to a halt. While the stunted version of “Rockefeller Center” and its Twin Towers appeared to be complete — both were empty and fenced off.


"It’s the financial crisis. The impact is big," said one man on the site who preferred not to be identified but said he worked for a transportation company. "I think there are still working on a building over there," he added, pointing down a wide and empty highway, strewn with litter.




It was scheduled for completion in 2019, offering 164 million square feet of office space over an area larger than Manhattan's financial district in a bid to stimulate development of vast residential districts nearby.


"They are building stuff that nobody really wants or needs — and there will come a day of reckoning," explained Gillem Tulloch, a Hong Kong-based analyst and managing director of GMT Research who has studied the growth of China's "ghost cities" across the country.




"Our leading economists in the West were lauding the Soviet-style system from the 1950s up until the 1980s," he said. "They were all wrong. I think it’s the same with China."

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Liberty2012's picture

Words ? The ultimate bubble ? Building unwanted buildings - that is something I never thought I would see.

TeamDepends's picture

You don't build a city for nothing. The Bankster maggots have focused their psychotic eyes on China for obvious reasons. Agenda 21 will force country folk into the city where they can be observed and tazed easier.

TahoeBilly2012's picture

That's just fucking creepy. Add the "fake New York" to my list of "never plan to see" along with the real New York and Las Vegas. 

ACP's picture

On the upside, that place would make for the world's most epic paintball game.

OW My Balls's picture

It won't be considered 'REALISTIC' until they pack it with whiny ass jews

Publicus's picture

Preparations for World War 3.

Mr Poopra's picture

Precisely.  To think the Chinese are stupid enough to build these cities without a purpose is laughable.  They are planning for a quick transition after the inevitable war due to the collapse of the paper game.

General Decline's picture

Twin tower replicas? Fly a couple jets into them and see if they fall down.

zerozulu's picture

This might be sincere effort to get rid of confetti dollars before it goes worthless. I will definitely do that if I have cash in the bank and convert it into real assets. IMHO

kaiserhoff's picture

The trash looks authentic.

Mr Pink's picture

I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that they won't collapse.....and these are probably made of cheap plastic

TruthInSunshine's picture

Fake Plastic Trees and all that.

Krugmanomics in action to extend the Ponzi. Next stop - When Mars

Never One Roach's picture

They can build a high speed rail and a big fancy skyscraper city … yet you still cannot safely drink the tap water or eat much of their food wthout getting deathly ill.



Freeden might call it, “Paradoxical!”

Freddie's picture

Are you talking about California?  Yeah - I agree.  

Jerry Brown wants high speed rail and the place is bathed in Fuki water now.

benb's picture

Agenda 21 cities is a good call but let's not forget the possibility that major portions of Japan may/will? be evacuated when the Fukishima catastrophe accelerates. Call it a long shot but these Ghost Cities may have been built for that purpose all along.

StychoKiller's picture

I don't believe that the Chinese are that fond of the Japanese!

roddy6667's picture

I've been living here (China) two years and have never gotten sick from the food. Can't say that about American food.
BTW, before you get up on your high horse, just a reminder. The citizens of China's big cities, like Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, etc, live longer than Americans.

kareninca's picture

You believe Chinese government longevity stats?  Boy are you gullible.

Not Goldman Sachs's picture

Even this article is fake...brought to you by the Ministry of Truth.

MontgomeryScott's picture

Complete with Twin Towers replicas, and the melted steel running down the channel rails, and the empty gold vault under WTC6, and they hired Jane Standley from the BBC who performs every day at 5PM, announcing the collapse of the Solomon Brothers Building (which can be seen standing behind her).

God help them if they ever have a simple office fire!

zerozulu's picture

where they are planing to stop their Manhattan? 97th street, 125th or all the way to bronks?

TruthHunter's picture

Give them a little time, they'll fall down without any planes


If they are built to same  the standard as most chinese crap I don't expect them to last.

Civilizedworm's picture

I've always dreamed about becoming a miluti billionaire for this exact reason. I would build an exact replica of the twin towers and crash some boings into them and see what happens, put the matter to bed.

Defiated's picture

Gee, would those replicas look like the real ones 1 yr after a 'suitcase nuke' gets detonated in downtown Manhattan?

ebear's picture

Right.  In an all out war, no one would think to target empty cities, since all they could be used for is as a place to retreat and regroup.


NoDebt's picture

I was thinking more along the lines of Deathrace 2000.

hobopants's picture

Why the hell not? They rip off everything else.

MalteseFalcon's picture

Silly Chinese with their empty cities, yellow skin, slanty eyes and Three Gorges dam.

However, just curious, what is the US building?  What is our ever-so-practical $50 billion project?

The Chinese have surplus to waste.  The US are debtors working on a $17 trillion project.

hobopants's picture

Going billions in to debt in order to build something useless has nothing to do with surplus, malinvestment should never be something to look up to. It's wasted capital. This is sad for the Chinese people because their government basically fucked them over with bad policy, just like ours has.

TheReplacement's picture

They have no surplus.  They printed debt at an even higher rate than us ($23T).  They have a half finished city to show for it.  We have repainted bridges.  Woohoo!

owensdrillin's picture

So they basically printed money on the same program as the US per capita. I can't believe canada doesn't get on the same page. I can imagine if my province got six billion per year out of thin air.

logicalman's picture

Maybe it's just the set for a remake of Escape from New York!


bobthecat's picture

Why would one never want to see New York?

bobthecat's picture

Why would one never want to see New York?

sullymandias's picture

do they have an empty replica WTC7 as well?

McCormick No. 9's picture

May they all mysteriously free fall into their own footprint.

ZerOhead's picture

After Larry buys them and acquires insurance from the Russians and Iranians...

Freddie's picture

I bet their NY Fed has that sulphur smell plus no gold in the basement like the NY Fed. 

The connecting tunnel to the former JP Morgan vault also has no gold.

Cacete de Ouro's picture

It collapsed in on itself about 20 minutes after BBC China reported that it had collapsed, but the feed went dead just before the collapse

Dubaibanker's picture

Over 100m people (that is a combined population of California, Texas, NY and Florida) need to be moved over the coming 6 years from rural areas to these empty buildings. This is the main reason why these 'ghost' cities have been built. A couple of years of emptiness is better than several years of traffic congestion, uncontrolled urban expansion etc (but only if you can afford it and actually care for your citizens, which is an alien concept in Western countries where capitalism for the rich turns into socialism for the rich at every loss making point).

China initiates migration of 100m farmers into cities
effendi's picture

Do they really NEED to move those 100 million? Even if they do it won't fill even half the 70 million empty apartments. Average Chines house size is just under 3 people, so that fills less than half the existing excess stock. 

They are also building another million or so new apartments each month that are excess to demand. If they stop the construction they take away 100 million or so jobs (construction workers, steel mills, cement factories, transport workers etc etc) and 16% of GDP.

So if they continue with the malinvestment they will be fucked and if they stop malinvestment they will be fucked.

Dubaibanker's picture

I don't believe someone with USD 4 trillion can make too much of losses with real estate because they have a lot more maneouverability.

However, do you have any source for 70m empty apartments? That seems like a lot in an over populated country.

Also, many of 'cities' have malls and other commercial real estate too.

We all have been awaiting an 'imminent' collapse of China (all coming from biased western media) but 10 years is a very long time awaiting a collapse.

I await some source of the 70m or anything close to that number...

Even delivering 1m apartments per month seems excessive....but that is more likely because the demand in larger cities like Shanghai and Beijing etc is simply crazy. 

Shanghai and Beijing both are estimated to reach 50m each by 2050.

Shanghai alone has gone from 16m in 2000 to 23m today and imagining 50m by 2050 .....I really don't know what to say for this scale of growth because it has never happened on this planet ever before?

And remember they are creating millionaires faster than anyone else ever.

Just last month they created 10,000 millionaires in one go when Alibaba went Hangzhou. Just in Hangzhou the population has quadrupled since 2000 from 2.5m to about 10m today and they just created these fellows who are buying everything in sight! Greater Hangzhou area has close to 21m population in the area.

Here is a brilliant article that suggests that just a mid size city like Hangzhou is equal in population to London or Paris yet continues to grow amid green spaces and is an IT hub and generating millionaires and billionaires and is simply unknown outside of China.

Just Hangzhou is expected to have more millionaires than LA in the near future.

And yes, they really need to move another 7% of their population to urban settings because they too are industrializing and have no need for so much rural/agri labour.

You should really see this from nytimes which is a fascinating article:

laomei's picture

lol, they are not moving these people, these people come of their own accord and once demand starts up in an area it explodes... if you don't plan it out in advance it gets fucked.

Freddie's picture

They need to move them to steal the land and bring on factory farms with GMO and MonSatan.

roddy6667's picture

It is better to build in advance so that people are not living in tents or under highway oveerpasses. China has a plan. What does America have?