real estate

All Aboard! The Plastic Bottle Ghost Train Arrives in San Leandro

No one recycles quite like Antonio Cardenas, especially during the holiday season.

For over a decade, the San Leandro resident has repurposed hundreds of plastic water bottles to create large-scale displays in his front yard. The displays over the years have featured submarines, pirate ships, and the Batmobile.

Cardenas each year aims to top his last design. This season, the real estate agent created a ghost train fully decked with skeletons, skulls and undead creatures. The display measures at 35 feet long and has approximately 1,000 plastic bottles. 

Jennifer Gonzalez / NBC Bay Area

Cardenas said the idea was initially sparked during the 2008 recession. He had a lot of time on his hands and decided to build a pirate ship made out of wooden pallets and burlap. His design quickly drew attention from neighbors and other people in the area who would come to catch a glimpse at the creation.

“I would come home and I couldn’t get in my driveway because there were too many people taking photographs of what I had built,” Cardenas said. "I got this idea that I could build something unique, something different."

Jennifer Gonzalez / NBC Bay Area

While the ghost train may be spooky now, it won't be for long – Cardenas plans to switch gears as the holidays get closer and turn it into a Santa train filled with teddy bears. 

You can catch a glimpse of the train in San Leandro until early January.

Jennifer Gonzalez / NBC Bay Area
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