Monday 2 September 2013

"White elephant"

It seems some of my readers who are not native English speakers are not familiar with the expression I used in the post about the Cidade da Cultura in Santiago de Compostela.

A "white elephant" is a prestigious, but unsuccessful, building project whose cost – of construction and maintenance – is out of proportion to its usefulness and which ends up being a burden on public finances.


  1. Ha!!! Ok. Thanks Paraic. Then Spain is full of white elephants! If you search for Aeropuerto de Castellon you'll find some interesting stuff: a whole airport was built without checking if it was needed, and now no airplanes land there. Now it's abandoned and no one works there. After being inaugurated some people wanted to organize a rave party within the airport, since it wasn't being used, but they didn't receive the ok for the party, of course. Anyway, thanks for the explanation. Ferran

    1. I know the story. That airport is a textbook example of a white elephant.