"Antillean Isles, a new Homestead subdivision, promised homeowners a community of elegant estate homes with the 'alluring architecture of the tropics.''
But when Martha Samohano glances out the window of her four-bedroom house she doesn't see the tropics -- just dirt, gravel and weeds. After the housing bubble burst, developers packed up their bulldozers and fled, leaving a bleak, lifeless landscape, frozen the moment things went sour.
''Everything is empty around me,'' Samohano said. 'It's very depressing to live in an area where you only have weeds growing up.'
While the darkened downtown Miami condominium tower has become a symbol of the real estate bust, at least most builders stayed around to see their projects through to completion. Things are worse in the South Florida's most far-flung subdivisions."