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UER Forum > Rookie Forum > How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners? (Viewed 3593 times)
Gybbo 


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How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< on 2/27/2017 7:14 PM >
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Hi everyone, first time posting.

Aside from exploring a well known abandoned mine in Cali and a small abandoned theater that I gained permission for, I really have no experience with Urban Exploration. However I love exploring and discovering abandoned places. So I'm wondering how does everyone find places to explore safely? I live near fort wayne Indiana. Anyplace I find is either demolished or being renovated/closely guarded. Any suggestions for areas within a few hours of Fort Wayne?
Also, I've checked the newcomer posts, but any other tips or recommendations?
I'm excited to delve into urban exploring, but I'm hoping to discover cool places while making as few stupid mistakes as possible.
Thanks so much!




NeuroticMatt 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 1 on 2/27/2017 7:46 PM >
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Lots and lots and lots of information already posted on how to find locations.


As for a specific spot, it is a little bit of a drive for you, but there is a place here in Texas...

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OH_ZOG_NO 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 2 on 2/27/2017 7:54 PM >
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Posted by NeuroticMatt

As for a specific spot, it is a little bit of a drive for you, but there is a place here in Texas...



Oh god here we go again




Peptic Ulcer 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 3 on 2/27/2017 8:03 PM >
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Its really not hard to find locations at all. The difficult part is finding time to visit them before they are destroyed! In fact I know of at least 50 locations within two hours of you and I live in Texas! Type "abandoned <city name>" and lots of stuff will come up. Look at the photos, a lot of times people will give you the building name and even the address! Read the forums of the results you get. A lot of times the location address is given in the description. I don't do facebook or Instagram but I know a lot of people get locations from there. Google Earth is your best friend. Look for a nearby spot and start looking for a caved in roof or industrial areas. Places near railroad tracks and rivers almost always yield something. Finally, (in a bit of self-promotion...) check this thread every once in a while: http://www.uer.ca/...=1&threadid=120477

I try to update it every week and something close to you may be there.

I understand the difficulty initially of trying to find theses places but as you drive around and play on the net you'll soon discover a ton of stuff to explore. Good luck and cant wait to see the results!




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2Xplorations 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 4 on 2/27/2017 8:07 PM >
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Ive had good luck walking around downtown Dallas just checking doors, you'd be surprised how often somebody forgets to lock them.




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Cryptomatic 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 5 on 2/27/2017 8:49 PM >
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I'm still pretty beginner-y myself, but one thing that I've figured out is that you have to learn to love walking around the city. Once you learn to enjoy that and do it more and more, places will show themselves to you. Keep a running notes doc with possible locations! At least that's what I've found...



[last edit 2/27/2017 8:50 PM by Cryptomatic - edited 1 times]

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Mickael 

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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 6 on 2/28/2017 12:11 AM >
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Follow the railroad tracks! Lot of industrial abandonment near most RR tracks.




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Aran 


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Even when unnecessary, it just looks cool.

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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 7 on 2/28/2017 12:50 AM >
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I personally find bicycles to be extremely helpful. Take a bike ride on the less economically successful side of town (every city has one, even if it's not obvious.) Bikes allow you to cover more ground faster than walking, yet allow you to stray off roads (unlike a car) while not moving too fast to see anything.




I was born too late to explore the world, but too early to explore the stars. So instead I'll explore the city, and see what I can see.

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Jonsered 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 8 on 2/28/2017 2:41 AM >
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Posted by Peptic Ulcer
Google Earth is your best friend. Look for a nearby spot and start looking for a caved in roof or industrial areas. Places near railroad tracks and rivers almost always yield something. .......


This. Can't say it enough. Read it. Know it. Live it.





I have changed my personal exploring ethics code. From now on it will be: "Take only aimed shots, leave only hobo corpses." Copper scrappers, meth heads and homeless beware. The Jonsered cometh among you, bringing fear and dread.

Steed 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 9 on 2/28/2017 3:19 AM >
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Posted by Aran
I personally find bicycles to be extremely helpful. Take a bike ride on the less economically successful side of town (every city has one, even if it's not obvious.) Bikes allow you to cover more ground faster than walking, yet allow you to stray off roads (unlike a car) while not moving too fast to see anything.


I agree, but scooters are faster and don't tire you out going uphill.




Trespassing wayfarer 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 10 on 2/28/2017 3:46 PM >
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As said before, biking around is super useful, not to mention, healthy. You can cover a lot of ground, along with having all the versatility of a pedestrian. Also, bikes are a lot less noticeable, you can hide them super well. It even comes with a pretty good excuse for why you are loitering around, just say you were tired and needed a rest.


That being said, the internet is a great tool as well, especially if you can think outside the box. Before heading to a new city to explore I like to go through flickr to see what other explorers in that city have found. (Youtube videos would also work too) They don't often have the locations, but it's a good way to know what's out there. Sometimes there's even little environmental clues that when paired with Google Earth, as people have mention, makes finding places pretty easy. It's a pretty reliable, though sometimes slow way.

Personally, I spend a lot of time looking at the various complaints people send into my city about abandoned buildings. These "concerned citizens" will often mention the exact location of the abandoned building they are complaining about. Finding places this way is a lot faster, though it doesn't always works. Ottawa, the city I live in, is the capital and political center of Canada, so it's in the public eye. This makes people a lot more aware and concerned of "problematic" properties. Other ways could include checking out some of the webpages of local graffiti artists, asking art students, or sometimes there's even a Facebook group dedicated to finding abandoned buildings. Every city is a little different, and you just have to adapt to the resources of that particular geographical community.

However, the absolute best way of finding places is through word of mouth of other explorers. If you don't know any explorers often times they will be willing to trade locations with you once you get some cool locations under your belt.

Good Luck!




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Peptic Ulcer 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 11 on 2/28/2017 6:32 PM >
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A bit "out of the box" but ask a cop. Seriously. Some of my best leads have come from cops. I've even had a few police escorts to locations and in one case a cop went exploring WITH ME! Once you build rapport with them it's a fantastic resource. The police in Midland, TX all knew me, knew why I was trespassing and said they had no problem with it and appreciated me letting them know. Be respectful, forthright and honest, maybe a little funny and it helps. Depending on your age tell them your working on a school project or writing a book. Cops in small towns tend to be a lot easier to deal with too so don't try this in a major city.




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rosindia 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 12 on 2/28/2017 6:50 PM >
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I do genealogy research for those who aren't able to travel to a location nearby. Often they want photos of the old industrial building their grandfathers or great grandfathers worked at.
Historical societies are great treasure troves. Something else that works for me, is to eat in a diner or go to an antique store in the tiny town.. Spending money in a town does wonders for how friendly people become.




gahdamnchi 


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watch your step...

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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 13 on 2/28/2017 6:56 PM >
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lowkey just gotta surf the web and cruise around your city. they're around, you just have to know the area well.




why not be close to death? as long as you don't poke the bear.
Dee Ashley 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 14 on 3/1/2017 12:55 AM >
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I added some detailed suggestions on customizing your google searches and Google Maps/MyMaps/Earth on Google here:

http://www.uer.ca/...rrpage=3&pp#post54

Scroll down to the bottom and you'll find two enties on the subject. These have helped me immensely.
There are a lot of other great ideas thought that entire thread as well.
Good luck and happy hunting!




I wandered till the stars went dim.
Dee Ashley 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 15 on 3/1/2017 1:05 AM >
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Posted by Peptic Ulcer
A bit "out of the box" but ask a cop. Seriously. Some of my best leads have come from cops. I've even had a few police escorts to locations and in one case a cop went exploring WITH ME! Once you build rapport with them it's a fantastic resource. The police in Midland, TX all knew me, knew why I was trespassing and said they had no problem with it and appreciated me letting them know. Be respectful, forthright and honest, maybe a little funny and it helps. Depending on your age tell them your working on a school project or writing a book. Cops in small towns tend to be a lot easier to deal with too so don't try this in a major city.


This actually does work sometimes. A friend and I were badly wanting to light paint a great location that happened to be directly across the street from the Sheriff's Dept. Light painting a location has its own challenges with regard to not getting caught (notice the word "light" in light painting). My friend wanted to ask one of the officers in the parking lot and I figured, what the hell, why not - but I really didn't think the officer would give us his blessing. Well, he did! We had free reign of that entire property half of the night without any police interference of any kind. I don't know how often this method will work (and we were actually in a large city too), but it goes back to the saying, "it never hurts to just ask!"

The only way I could see this having the opposite effect is if they say, "no," and now they would know who you were and know you went against their orders if you did the explore anyways.

In the end, it boils down to making a judgement call that considers all of these factors, and even more, depending on the location and situation.




I wandered till the stars went dim.
Dee Ashley 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 16 on 3/1/2017 1:09 AM >
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Posted by 2Xplorations
Ive had good luck walking around downtown Dallas just checking doors, you'd be surprised how often somebody forgets to lock them.


This works in Little Rock too, as I've personally discovered during my last trip there.




I wandered till the stars went dim.
Emperor Wang 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 17 on 3/10/2017 8:20 AM >
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Satellite images are great, but so are maps.

https://www.topoqu...mode=zoomin&size=m

Browse around, spot something curious-looking and plan a road trip. It helps to go slow and pay close attention to your surroundings at all times. You never know when and where you'll stumble across something interesting.

Industrial areas are often more interesting than commercial and residential. Less people around means you're less likely to be accosted (especially outside business hours) and lower property values means you're more likely to find things that have gone fallow.

Walking train tracks is great for scoping out industrial neighbourhoods. The most interesting things in those neighbourhoods are almost always at the backs of the properties.

If historical things interest you, try comparing old maps with current ones. I like to identify things that disappeared off the maps and go out in search of them.

http://historicalmaps.arcgis.com/usgs/

A lot of people find ruins, foundations, remains and such boring as hell. Not me though. Every single thing I find gives me a better understanding of the world around me.




Fucktard McFuckface must die.
Aran 


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Even when unnecessary, it just looks cool.

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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 18 on 3/11/2017 7:08 AM >
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One thing I've learned is that a key part of finding locations is having an ear to the ground in regards to the happenings of your city. This can take some time, but knowing the ins and outs of city politics and economics can be a valuable tool.

In urban areas, abandoned buildings are most common in low income areas. Low income areas tend to have a positive correlation with the crime rates. Crime report maps are usually publicly available online, and are usually pretty up to date.

I've been experimenting with taking crime maps, and looking for clusters of dense crime areas. Small areas where there are multiple and frequent occurrences of several crime types (vandalism, assault, robbery, burglary) can be good indicators of something to look into.

High crime doesn't always lead to abandonments, of course. In Madison, WI for example, this map shows a number of incidents running along the isthmus, which is the wealthiest and most well policed part of the city, partially due to the presence of the State Capitol building there. Zooming in on State Street, which runs from the University of Wisconsin Madison administration building on one end to the State Capitol on the other, we can see many recent reports of Disturbing the Peace, most likely due to recent student protests there. However, towards the outskirts of town, we can see groupings of crime reports, which may indicate low income areas.


Combine this with keeping up to date on the news and mapping previously discovered abandonments, and you can find some patterns to help narrow your search areas.




I was born too late to explore the world, but too early to explore the stars. So instead I'll explore the city, and see what I can see.

Flickr: https://www.flickr...9290450@N05/albums
Dee Ashley 


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Re: How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners?
< Reply # 19 on 3/12/2017 10:51 PM >
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Posted by Aran
One thing I've learned is that a key part of finding locations is having an ear to the ground in regards to the happenings of your city. This can take some time, but knowing the ins and outs of city politics and economics can be a valuable tool.

In urban areas, abandoned buildings are most common in low income areas. Low income areas tend to have a positive correlation with the crime rates. Crime report maps are usually publicly available online, and are usually pretty up to date.

I've been experimenting with taking crime maps, and looking for clusters of dense crime areas. Small areas where there are multiple and frequent occurrences of several crime types (vandalism, assault, robbery, burglary) can be good indicators of something to look into.

High crime doesn't always lead to abandonments, of course. In Madison, WI for example, this map shows a number of incidents running along the isthmus, which is the wealthiest and most well policed part of the city, partially due to the presence of the State Capitol building there. Zooming in on State Street, which runs from the University of Wisconsin Madison administration building on one end to the State Capitol on the other, we can see many recent reports of Disturbing the Peace, most likely due to recent student protests there. However, towards the outskirts of town, we can see groupings of crime reports, which may indicate low income areas.


Combine this with keeping up to date on the news and mapping previously discovered abandonments, and you can find some patterns to help narrow your search areas.


Along the same lines: hooking up with forums of builder's, architects, construction workers, etc., is something I'm just now starting to play with, and I'm really excited with the results. I would assume this is only useful in densely populated areas, but there are tons of secondary data that you can pull out of these sites. For instance, I found a map that auto updates itself through google (MyMaps, I think), and shows all current, past, failed, and proposed major developement projects. This is especially interesting to me because what do you think is about to happen to those three farmhouses and textile mill currently sitting inside that shaded area that are for sale or perhaps already bought out? Most places within that zone are going to be flattened and are often already vacant or slowly becoming vacant as the new owners phase them out for demolition and to build their spiffy new stadium or mixed use 500 acre luxury villa or whatever.

There is a wealth of info in forums dedicated to preservation, construction, architecture, and developement. Hell, even the ghost hunting forums have yielded some surprising successes for me in the past!

Edit: typo




[last edit 3/12/2017 10:53 PM by Dee Ashley - edited 1 times]

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UER Forum > Rookie Forum > How do you research and find locations? Tips for beginners? (Viewed 3593 times)
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