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About this City Journal

Linoa06's own Commonwealth of Cathnoquey! This is mostly a Cities Skylines CJ :) Also, plenty of transit maps!

Experimental : Cathnoquey's nationstates profile!

1st CSL Journal to make it to the top of the BTT: CJ Section List! Thanks everyone! :D

Entries in this City Journal

Linoa06

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Hey there! It's been a while since I updated my CJ, because I've been busy making a new town. More to the point, I've decided to try and detail a little more. I've upgraded my PC to the point it can actually run a lot of props and CJ on decent quality settings, and while I still do not want to use CSL as a "city painter", I do want to go the extra mile in decorating and detailing.

It's also been two years since I update this CJ and so far it's been my longest running one, and that's partly because I really enjoy Cities Skylines. Most great CJs are SC4 CJs, I'll say that much, but in terms of gameplay CSL is, for me, the superior game and it's keeping me coming back for more. 

Sooo... Here's the 44th entry, but if you want a comparison of what I did (and the game supported) back two years ago, feel free to look back towards my very first entries. Back then it was...rough to say the least lol. Forum link here

Anyway, we're leaving Ashford behind for a bit, and we're going to Santa Linna, the capital of the Anabon Overseas Commonwealth. I planned to reserve it for a Tropico entry, but well. :>~

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Downtown St Linna! The island is located in between mainland Tamriel and the Thalmor dominated Summerset Isles; it is one of the main small tropical islands that dot the Abecean Sea. With 65'000 people, it is a fairly well-sized town, and easily one of the richest. About 15% of the population of the entire state live here.

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St Linna itself is known for its bricked or brownstone buildings. Built in the colonial age at the end of the Fourth Era and early Fifth Era, a lot of its downtown are still packed with intricate brickworks and small, narrow square buildings. 

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That's not to say everything is grim and gritty. Some of the city's buildings are...colourful to say the least. This is the Parish Hall, by the way - the mayor's office is on the top floor.

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So what's to do in Santa Linna? Amongst the narrow towers full of finance and reinsurance companies, you could go dine and gamble at At The Penny's Casino and Cabaret! It's usually a must-go attraction for tourists willing to part with their cash.

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Or, you can wait for the evening and enjoy yourself in the city's many nightclubs. It's always warm, you might even enjoy a night dive in the sea!

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Many tourists also come to watch the Abecean Sharks play blitzball, too. They're one of Cathnoquey's finest teams, though because of the remoteness of Anabon, their stadium is also the smallest.

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For many tourists, however, the best hotels and attractions are outside of town, on one of the island's many sandy shores. Take the nearby town of Belle-Pointe : just off the Route 22 freeway, the once Breton town is no longer a commute village and fishing community, but instead a hub packed with casinos, five-star hotels, fine beaches and luxury condos. 

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Santa Linna's public transport system, one of the best in the country, links Belle-Pointe and other towns together. Tourists and locals alike can spend the morning in their hotels, then take the bus into Santa Linna proper for an afternoon spent exploring the city or shopping, before coming back in the evening to enjoy the sea.

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As you've probably guessed, tourism is critical to the economy of Santa Linna. A lot of infrastructure has been built across the state to accommodate that.

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However, tourism isn't everything in Anabon. It's also a major offshore trading hub, thanks to generous taxes and loopholes, with reinsurance companies especially well settled in the CBD's high rises. 

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Critics can complain about the lack of financial transparency, but most agree the island wouldn't be so well-off without the financial institutions that call it their home.

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Moving on, to the corner with the passenger train station, and a typical high-rise housing district. 

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And yes, Santa Linna does have a railway. Mostly it carries freight around the island, but there are about 15 trains per day per direction that leave Santa Linna and bring commuters into the city. The trains are air conditioned, and there are also special tourist trains that run excursions along the island.

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The islands aren't just beaches and settlements; inland, one can find plantations and farms dotted across the land, too. 

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Finally for this overview, let's have a look at the roads. Most roads are small, 1x1 roads, such as Route 25 here pictured.

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However, due to the large amount of traffic to and from Santa Linna and its busy harbour, some roads have been or are being upgraded to freeway standards.

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The interchange between Routes 2 and 22 - the two heaviest roads in the entire state - is the oldest piece of freeway infrastructure on the island. 

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At such, Route 22 (here entering Santa Linna from the north) is undergoing heavy maintenance works to accomodate an ever growing population. 

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And rural exits, such as the Route 22/Route 230 junction to Altmer's Cove, are being upgraded to full freeway standards.

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In the coming years, Santa Linna is expected to grow by 10 to 15%. It is going to be a massive challenge for a city that already cannot feed itself.

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Most of the food is imported from Tamriel, and routed through the state's many harbours into Santa Linna. This is one of the reasons why the rail network is so important - there is no single main harbour due to the geography of the area, and ships are instead routed to five satellite harbours linked together by railway.

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Anyway, let's close this overview now. We'll be coming back to Santa Linna later, so here's a view of the downtown area at night...

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As well as one of Belle-Pointe High Street, next to the Cathnoquey National Post Office.

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But I wouldn't leave without a map of the state, including Santa Linna. So, hope you enjoy, and thanks for the support I got with my CJ for the last two years :D

And since it's been two years since Cities Skylines has been out, this is also the opportunity to give a massive thanks to the modders of Cities Skylines, as well as to the other CJ makers, and to everyone on and off site who shared pictures and videos of their creativity - it helped me, and I'm sure many others immensely, and I can only hope that I, too, give a bit of inspiration to others in building all these amazing cities. ^_^ 

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Linoa06

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Hey hey! Welcome to Ashford! Ah but who cares? Winter is finally here!

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'Tis the season to be jolly as the winter holidays have started and a thick blanket of snow covers most of northern Cathnoquey.

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Traffic is almost at a standstill as the slippery roads have frozen over. 

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It's the perfect season for desaturated postcards, and ski stations all across the Northern Territory have started operating for the winter. 

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University is on winter break, but the university district is still fairly busy at this time of year. Holiday shopping still needs doing for some, as 'tis also the season to share!

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With the roads blocked up, most people rely on public transit, or stay at home where it's cosy and warm. Yet, for the most part, the city isn't completely locked, and people are still going to work.

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It definitely is the season to visit Ashford's ski resorts and saunas. Tourists can pack up, come in, and have some coffee and cakes while watching the snow fall over the city while the ponder their holiday plans.

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City Hall Lake hasn't quite frozen yet, but the canals have. Soon, people can finally go ice-skating again. There is a sense of wonder across the city, as with every winter, as the snow transforms the landscape.

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There is a sense of wonder across the city, as with every winter, as the snow radically transforms the landscape.

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The city continues to function, but everything is also so -quiet-. Can't blame the people gone for the winter holidays, or who decided not to rush to work today.

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Besides, there are several traffic jams in certain areas, as not every car uses winter tires, and accidents become the norm. You'd expect different from a city used to snow in winter.

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The M-3 interstate is still operational, though, with road equipment finally coming into play!

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In the Northern Territories, despite the milder climate winters are harsh. Yet every year, snow comes ever later as the climate warms. Many people point out to snow falling as definite proof that hell is not freezing over, yet the first snowfalls used to happen a month earlier just two decades ago in this part of the world. At least 5E139 isn't the warmest year of the Fifth Era or on record at all - that dubious honor does belong to '136 however.

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It's time to turn on the geothermal plant. Electricity provides most heating in most households, but there's a specially dedicated network that provides warm water to most.

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But already, in the deceptively quiet city a small emergency is occurring. A small avalanche further down the railway has shut off rail traffic in and out of Ashford. Passengers and commuters from further down the metro area end up stranded in the frozen city.

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For several, it's the occasion to wander into midtown and enjoy the fine dining establishments.

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Further in the suburbs, the bustle of city life and the constant noise and music give way to a surreal landscape of silence and peace.

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The first snowfalls always come to the delight of kids, especially in the mountain communities of greater Ashford, such as Balmung, NCT, where they can sleigh down the steep roads.

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Ironically, the new trains that are due to replace Ashford Subway rolling stock can't handle the ice! Stranded regional trains come to the rescue.

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Flights rush in to land before an expected blizzard later today, and another accident is narrowly averted. A jet has become stranded on the airport's main runway, and ATC has mistakenly given clearance to the next plane to land. Thankfully, the flight crew noticed the runway intrusion on time and abandoned the landing.

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'tis the longest night tonight, and at barely 4PM night has already fallen.

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Traffic into midtown as the snow begins falling again...

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...and it is soon time for commuters to go home from work, either by road...

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...or by rail, at least on the still operational metro lines.

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Tonight's big game has had to be cancelled after the away team (from Vesper Bay) failed to reach Ashford on time tonight. Now that's disappointing. The Ashford Rangers are not top of the league (Glenvale played almost perfectly this season and leads them by 5 points) but they're on a 10 win streak, so there's a feeling that anything is possible for the Blitzball league's recently promoted underdogs.

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The mayor must be preparing their New Year's address, but the rotunda and most upper story rooms seem to be empty tonight.

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Empty streets in downtown Ashford. By now most people are already done with their holiday shopping. The biggest celebration, Saturalia, is in only a few days, and is a grand occasion to visit family, exchange gifts and feast around roast. The Wayfell celebration has spread to all over Tamriel and even further, such as Cathnoquey, and even Akavir.

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Rail services resume, allowing people to finally return home to their families. The longest night of the year is just starting.

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And thus, the fair people of Ashford are falling asleep, as several more inches of snow begin to fall over their roofs. The winter season is starting, and truly, 'tis the season to be merry.

That's it for today folks! Hope you enjoyed, this is a shorter than usual entry as I'm very busy, but a new city's in the works so stay updated! Happy holidays to all ^^

Linoa06

Entry 42 : Ashford Metro

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Welcome to Ashford! And today, we're talking a tour on two of the major links that connect Ashford : the Blue and Orange rapid transit lines.

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Ashford is a big city, which requires some form of heavy rail to avoid traffic problems. Let's take a tour of the Blue Line first.

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The Blue Line is a 15 km long line that links the northernmost parts of the town, the CBD, and the nearer east side. 30% of all journeys made on the entire transit network are made on the Blue Line. Trains run on a 10 minute headway at peak times, though half the trains northbound stop at Empire Park while only the other half terminates further at Coleridge Heights. Most of the Blue Line used to be part of a mainline which served several towns, now suburbs, in the Coleridge valley. We started at Coleridge Heights, so let's follow the rails!

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The line is still operated by old, twice-refurbished MP54 units, usually coupled in 4-car consists. Their replacement has been long overdue, but a referendum on a transit tax sales increase that would have gone to fund replacement of Blue and Orange rolling stock has been defeated twice in the past twenty years. Oh, and here's the entry to the Coleridge Railyard.

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For at least half a mile from Coleridge Heights station, the mainline from New Wellingborough parallels the metro line. Here's where they split, though they will merge again shortly before Central Station. You'll soon notice the lack of signals on the metro - that's because the two lines use moving block technology and run on automatic train operation, with a single train operator responsible for the safety of the carriage for the length of its journey. The most obvious advantage is optimized headways and wiggle room for expansion or heavier usage - but on several occasions the system has failed, forcing all trains to stop with no signals to run on and stranding passengers across the city. The system is also criticized for being expensive to maintain and unneeded since the shortest headway on the network are about 4-5 minutes on shared Blue/Orange Line tracks.

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Another view of the line split, as the mainline goes through a windfarm, because...why not? The city's power grid isn't gonna run itself and nobody cares what the reckless, billionaire President of Cathnoquey thinks of wind farms next to his golf courses.

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The mainline then crosses a bridge over the Coleridge Valley, which is easily one of the highest rail bridges in Cathnoquey.

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But before that, we arrive at King's Hill station, formerly King's Hill Road. Note how the road itself is sandwiched between the subway and mainline tracks. King's Hill does not see many customers, though there are only one train every 20 minutes calling here.

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The Blue Line then traces its way across hilly terrain to reach Empire Park. 

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Empire Park station used to be small, too. However, it was greatly expanded on in 5E118, as the transit authority sought to adopt a hub-and-spoke model with the Blue Line as its cornerstone. Several bus lines terminate at Empire Park Bus Terminal (in the background), and half of all Blue Line trains terminate here, too. In 5E128, a new rail link, the underground, elevated Airport Shuttle now calls here too. The underground concourse linking all platforms now serves as a platform itself for the small automated shuttle. Empire Park is the largest used station outside of the CBD.

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The tracks then weave across Concord, one of the old late 4th Era plantations now merged into the city's spawling fabric.

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North Concord Station and its Park and Ride parking lot.


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Two minutes later, and we roll into Concord Institute Station. Those trains sure are rusty.

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A #10 red bus typical of Ashford rolls by Concord Institute station. The Institute itself is just a block away, and is a highly-ranked engineering university campus.

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Trains then go down the hill in a series of sharp curves across Sheldonville...

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...then under the freeway bridge, where they rejoin with the mainline, at the entrance of the main industrial park.

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Central Station railyard. The metro tracks are on the left of the picture, you can see the Orange Line tracks merging into the Blue Line ones. Middle tracks are for mainline traffic.

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Here's a Blue Line train bound for Central Station.

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Finally, we arrive at Central Station, an important interchange point for most city buses as well as between the Blue and Orange lines.

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After a two-minute layover, we start again, and this time go underground. In the late 4th Era, not long after the end of the Civil War, Central Station did not exist, and there were three tunnel portals to what was then the main central station, State Street.

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And here it is! State Street station, nested in its trench. There were more tracks back then, now buried below where the tram tracks run. A brick building used to connect this sunken station, perpendicular to all six platforms, but it has since then been demolished and changed into that road you can see above the remainder of the station. The empty space that used to be the closed four platforms has been covered up below the plaza and converted into a parking lot.

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The Green Line tram still calls here, though, and State Street is still an important transport hub today.

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However, from street level, nobody would suspect one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture used to stand above the steam trains in the trenches below.

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We continue to University station, once known as University / State Capitol. This is the final station where Orange and Blue Lines share the same tracks, as the Orange splits northwards and the Blue continues eastwards.

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Here's where both lines split, as the tracks now run along the waterfront.

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At Morningside Station, a housing promoter got the idea of building his Railside Pyramid housing development on either side of the rail tracks. Skybridges were originally planned, but the city council deemed them overkill. This piece of track is new, and was built across the district as gentrification took hold and condos replaced run-down projects; there used to be an avenue instead of the trackage, which for years was known for the Morningside Market. There isn't much of a community to bring together here these days, but at the same time, someone had to do something about all the rat-infested buildings...

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The Blue Line tracks then continues into high-density development, all built on the site of Morningside Market Avenue...

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And finally the Blue Line turns northwards to serve some of the East Side.

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Loxborough / Grove Park, end of the line! There is an expansion project to the town of Balmung which would involve the Blue Line digging into these hills northbound, but once again, lack of funding has forced the Authority to shelf the whole project.

We've seen the Blue Line; let's now take a gander at the Orange Line.

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The Orange Line is the city's main link linking the southern suburbs, but it actually starts north of the CBD. About 20% of all journeys made on the network are made using the Orange Line, which is a 10 km long line which runs mostly elevated. This is because unlike the older Blue Line, the Orange Line was built as a metro from the onset. Likewise, the Orange Line runs on a 10 minute headway though all services start and terminate at the termini (except for a few late-night and early-morning trains, which begin at Empire Park after coming out or heading into Coleridge Railyard). Let's start at Lafayette Boulevard station, on the newer Uptown Expansion line.

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Lafayette Boulevard, at the heart of Uptown (even though Downtown separates Midtown from Uptown, a quirk of the city's growth and the names not quite following through). Uptown is nested in the Ashford hillsides, and is easily one of the most diverse communities in the city : the original Dunmer settlers still live here, along with several other Elvish races that, back in old Tamriel, would be at each others' throats. The result is Hamilton "International" Avenue, seen here at the corner of Lafayette. This expansion relieved the CBD as several bus lines could be pushed back to end at Lafayette instead.

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Waiting for the train at Lafayette Boulevard. The station is two-tracked, but in normal service only Platform 1 (signed with an orange "Downtown & Newbury") is in service. Platform 2 (signed with a blue "Downtown & Empire Park") is used either for storage, in case of a breakdown on the other platform, or as a Blue Line platform for those trains heading back to the depot using the Blue Line tracks (or in case of shutdown on the Blue Line's eastern half). It is more economical to have them be in revenue service as much as possible, after all, and so they continue as Blue Line trains from University to Empire Park.

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Using elevated tracks the line then continues to North CBD / Silverwind Casino station, sponsored by said casino. The station is moderately used, but when the Silverwind hosts galas journeys to and from this station are free of charge.

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The line then comes to street level, and then digs down underground under the CBD. There should have been an underground station somewhere inside the CBD, but it was never built because - you guessed it - lack of funds. Sadly, most people consider urban rail to be for-profit, whereas it should not be, as it is a piece of infrastructure necessary to the nation's economy much like airports or roads, but oh well.

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The line emerges above ground and quickly merges with the Blue Line for that University - State Street - Central Station stretch. Before this Expansion opened, Orange Line trains terminated in a dedicated terminal at Feltonville on the Blue Line, which is now closed.

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The Orange Line parts from the Blue Line here. Trains run on these rickety bridges over the industrial canal..

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..Then merge back together. Note how these trains are electrified using conventional overhead lines, by the way - that's a remnant of the Blue Line's past as an electrified mainline railway, which carried over when it was time to connect the Orange Line to it.

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The Orange Line then curves over Moore Avenue, which it will now follow, with Bybury / Stadium station a staggering 5 blocks away from the stadium itself.

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View from the curve looking southwards.

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Wynesfield station with Raynoldstown station in the background, once the hill is cleared.

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As Moore Avenue swerves further and further way from the CBD, the Orange Line becomes at-grade and curves alongside the roadway.

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Orange Lines track split to accomodate a roadway pillar at the end of Moore Avenue.

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Brownsville Avenue station, serving the Wood Height Projects. Yes, that's a fairly inefficient roadway, but it looks unique and there are many roadways like that across the world. It separates the flow of traffic, it does its job, much as people might complain about the area's lack of walkability. Not everything needs to be game-mechanic-optimal.

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An Orange Line train about to enter Brownsville Ave station, bound for Newbury Quay. Talking of which :

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Finally, we arrive at the terminal station : Newbury Quay, along with a small railyard. 

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The station is located just a block away from the bay itself. Handy for an afternoon out by the waterside.

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Newbury used to be a quaint resort town, but partly thanks to the subway, it has now developed into an entire residential suburb of Ashford, more than 7 km away.

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And what would this entry be without its own subway map? The Blue and Orange lines are the backbone of Ashford, along with the Green Line, which we haven't quite visited - but worry not, a new tram line is on its way, so we'll have plenty of time exploring it soon! 

Anyway, that's it for me, I hope you enjoy this very long entry but then again I love trains a lot - also I wanted to show that it is possible to make a compelling, yet functional metro link using conventional rail (which does make you think a lot more about spamming those subway trains, honestly). It's an extra challenge I recommend to anyone interested in some eye candy and also in a less easy alternative to subways.

Sooo see you around :D

Linoa06

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Welcome back to Ashford! 

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And now we can even land in by plane. Ashford Regional Airport isn't very big, but it should bring more tourists as well as boost the economy. Good thing for the new mayor, who is none other than the old mayor, as the citizen's initiative we discussed last entry eventually lost despite the polls calling the city for them.

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And so the first thing the old-new mayor did was call a conference on transportation, the Fredas after inauguration. Much to the environmentalists' dismay, the first thing on the menu is the construction of a new airport terminal, which had not been part of the initial plan. 

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On Pelletine Avenue, music halls are enjoying their last few nights before the required sales tax increase. However, it's unlikely the city nightlife scene will be overly hit. And as every weekend night, there's a lot to do in town - for instance, new shows, premiering in Ashford!

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And what shows! Tonight the popular book-turned-movie-turned-musical Le Frenchiest Fry - A Story of Life, Love and Garlic Bread is due to start at 9pm at the University Theatre. Media, critics, cinema snobs - everyone's queued for hours to get to their booked seats first, and kleenex sales have skyrocketed throughout the city. Or is that due to the other show premiering tonight just opposite the road - The Lusty Argonian Maid : The Opera?

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There's plenty of other things to do on a Loredas night, though. And those things usually don't involve sleeping. But where could everyone be?

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It's not just Loredas, it's also the hottest night of Sun's Height - it's more likely they're partying the night away in one of Midtown's finest or not so finest nightclubs.

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They could also be at the Canyon Casino, which tonight is hosting a charity gala. No matter the time - these are great opportunities for socializing and making friends in high places.

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Normally, they'd also be either at the Blitzball or Football stadiums. The Football stadium, pictured here, is on the edge of the CBD, just beyond the Moore Avenue bridge. But tonight, there is no match, as every major sports league in the country is on Midyear hiatus.

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In the southern parts of town, some lone composers are passing the time in their record studios. Their buildings will be demolished soon to make way for a new metro line. Not every major studio has accepted to move downtown, and critics complain that soon the neighborhood will have lost much of its nightly charm. But who wants to foot the bill for burying the metro underground?

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The Blue Line runs almost 24/7, only pausing for one short hour on weekends, serving the city's partygoers as an attempt to curb drunk driving inside the city. At least where the Blue Line runs, it seems to work so far, though every station is staffed by police officers to avoid trouble.

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This is most obvious at State Street Station, the transport hub of the city, which remains noisy animated throughout the night, ferrying people from pub to pub, from nightclub to nightclub.. It is 5AM already, and rain is beginning to fall as slowly, people go home.

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And so in very little time, as the sun rises, an eerie silence settles upon the sleepless city.

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Everyone's gone home to sleep, finally, and the rain washes away the mess left behind on the streets. Today's going to be less hot, that's for sure.

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It doesn't take long for the sun to come back, however, and by mid-day it is as if it had never rained. If Loredas is a day of drinking and revelling, Sundas is more family friendly, with many people taking their children out to the park, or even on the shores of the lake.

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And while nobody ever really dips into the water, some forlorn souls do wander amongst the ruins of the former beach resort.

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At least there's more than a token service on most bus routes! But the day is already almost over, and for most tomorrow is yet another Morndas of work. Another day, another septim...

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But there are worse places to live out the daily grind, that's for sure! Ashford has comparatively little commute times, for instance, and prices in the city aren't quite as high as, say, Glenvale or Vesper Bay prices.

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And this is it for Ashford today, so I hope you enjoyed, and next time we'll visit the road and rail systems that form the backbone of the city. Oh, and maps :

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This is a map of Ash County, with Ashford in the middle, in the style of Amesbury's old maps from when CSL first launched...

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And here's a map of the more central areas of Ashford!

So that's all for today, see you next time :>

 

Linoa06

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My picture hosting website PostIMG is most likely closing due to a breach of CloudFlare ToS. At such pictures across the CJ may well be missing. The good news is, I've saved up 100% of my pictures, and it's mostly going to be a matter of transferring to a new picture service provider. 

What this really could mean is that I can open up Reddit to post my screenshots every now and then, and Imgur as a duplicate of this CJ to try and reach out beyond Simtropolis, if the response turns out positive enough. If not, well I'll use Imgur without sharing to the community, or move to something else. :/

So...Just some extra work I could spend on making railroads D: Full Imgur link, which is mostly the same as this CJ entry : https://imgur.com/gallery/RIF1n

Anyway, road retextures go :D

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Yeah..that looks much sleeker than the default textures, don't you think? I changed the header back to normal though. xD Anyway...

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It's another bright day in Ashford. The trams run on time, there aren't too many jams... That's a welcome change, right?

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In City Hall, however, city planners are assembled on the High Councillor's orders. They are reviewing the final impact of the newest skyscraper in town. Least we can say is : good for real estate moguls and the treasury, bad for the residents.

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The suits over at the State Capitol even tried to block it, environmental studies showed it was a bad idea, but after just two years of building..

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1 Pelletine Plaza was finally completed, lighting the way to a brighter future for Ashford. The structure was built away from the CBD, citing lower property prices elsewhere, but close enough to a highway and transit links.

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Still, it's an impressive building allright. 60+ floors of office and retail space, served directly by the Green Line and surrounded with a beautiful plaza, full of greenery. There's only one tiny problem...

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It's in the middle of low-density residential areas, and all the traffic adjustments and road improvements won't change the fact that now, if you happen to live in the tower's shadow you can forget your 2pm garden tanning. Oh, and you're being priced out of your home. In what's already not a rich area of town. Hope you like yoga :/

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Critics yelled that this tower project is yet another attempt at gentrification - hipsters are now buying out all the condos, and new residential buildings are planned. But the question is - how did this happen? Zoning laws are clear : the area is residential, and meant for low-density housing with some commercial development on Pelletine Avenue itself. 

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But the problem is, zoning codes here are vague at best. It only took finding some loopholes, and amendment of the codes to classify the tower as, well, small commercial development. And probably some bribing of the city council as a whole - it was cheap land to build a tower on after all.

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And with such a crowded CBD, it was fairly unlikely to find land that cheap to build on any closer to town. 

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But 1 Pelletine isn't the only new tower in town. Other than the refurbishment of the Southern Metropolitan Hospital, Midtown businesses now welcome two new additions to its skyline.

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The MileEnder Center (left) and Portland Tower (right) were also erected in the same time window as 1 Pelletine, at a fraction of the cost - at the heart of the city's nightlife, and only a dozen blocks away from the CBD proper.

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This has been a much welcome boost to the local daytime economy as office workers come to visit the area's restaurants and diners. The MileEnder Center in particular has become the home of several TV and radio stations previously scattered across town, such as all three major networks (Cathnoquey Broadcast Service, Cathnoquey News Network, and Kingscote Broadcasting Company), and several minor affiliates and local station, including Dunmeri language channels. The Portland Tower, instead, welcomes musicians, labels, and even a music hall of its own.

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Critics of 1 Pelletine are quick to draw comparisons between the two projects, and the High Councilor now has to deal with the Citizen Initiative, a grassroot movement that seeks to take over City Hall in a few months. Every three years, each of the city's five Districts elects two Councillors in addition to the citywide election of the High Commissioner and Celli "Cellyfish" Ajhraari, leader of the CI, looks set to displace both major established parties, the Federal Party and the People's Party of Cathnoquey - both nationally crumbling in times of political turmoil.

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To make matters worse, city neighborhoods are banding together too, concerned that they might one day be threatened by real estate moguls. OccupyAshford, environmentalist lobbies, but also homeowners associations concerned with the municipal government's alleged abuse of eminent domain (the practice of buying someone's property compulsorily for public use) - they're all banding together and making a stand against City Hall.

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Will Celli be able to claim City Hall? Ever since Jane Haaleri, a Dunmer - a third of the country's population yet still considered a minority - managed to win Glenvale far to the south for the Greens smaller parties and fringe candidates have shown themselves more daring, and more successful. So who knows! After the Dunmer, maybe the Khajiit can take a turn in the spotlight.

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What's certain is the battle for City Hall will be tough, but then again if you're going to push more nails in the incumbent council's coffin you might as well make those nails skyscraper sized, right?

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And so we leave Ashford with a few of the central areas of town...until next time :D

Linoa06

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Hey there party people! Cathnoquey is back, and this time we are going to Ashford, the capital of the Northern Territories :D

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Ashford is a city of some 300,000 inhabitants, with about 1,000,000 people in the surrounding metropolitan area. It is the state capital of the Northern Territories, as well as the seat of Ash County. It is located on the Timber Ponds, in fact a lake that stretches inland, surrounded by hills, forests and salt marshes, twenty miles from the northern coast of Cathnoquey.


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Ashford is one of these new towns built in the early Fifth Era, and in fact is known for its grided layout, much more rigidly adhered to than elsewhere. The commission-based city government, one of the few of its kind in Cathnoquey, has spent the last decade breaking the grid in favour of traffic calming solutions. They also keep up the Ashford Metro, which includes the oldest train tunnels in Cathnoquey, beneath the downtown area.


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Ashford City Hall is the traditional heart of the city, not just politically but in its geographical layout. City Hall Park was designed by one of the city's founding architect, Skyrim-born Ragna Hoffensdottir; despite the skyscrapers creeping across the skyline the park remains the most visited green space in the county.


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While Ashford is a generally pleasant and progressive city, it hasn't always been so. In the 50s, 60s and 70s, the city had one of the highest violent crime rates and gang wars were commonplace. Crime has come down since the reign of radical high commissioner Marcus Bluebanner, who made it his primary goal to eradicate violence from Ashford. Many of his policies centred around gun control, stronger punishment, two state-of-the-art supermax jails, with mixed effects.

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It took several decades to clean up entire neighbourhoods, though, and the Bluebanner Act as it became known enabled the city authorities to repossess entire blocks - usually bulldozing them despite public outrage, using the construction of the M3 highway as an excuse. This neighbourhood, since then renamed Morningside, used to be a very impoverished slum - today though it looks sleek and modern, filled with concrete, impressive condos, music halls, and ad billboards.


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More cynical commenters would point out that the skooma drug trade and associated violence were at best simply replaced by the cleaner business of money laundering. The Northern Territories are technically not a state but a Special Federal Territory, which means every municipality there have much more freedom in its political organization, taxes and most other aspects of the economy. Ashford is known as a tax haven, and several companies have set up shop there. Likewise, many real estate projects in the city have been called dubious by transparency activists, though fiercely protected by the City Hall's lawyers.


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With that said let's take a view at the downtown area. The riverside, mostly reclaimed land, is no popular hangout spot since it is cut off by the metro and high capacity ramps. Nonetheless, here are the fifteen most important landmarks in the downtown area :

1- Central Station

2- Federal Investigation Service HQ & Federal Hospital

3- Louisoix Leveilleur University

4- 1054 State Street Building (Transit Authority building)

5- Bluerise Plaza Building

6- City Hall & Park

7- Columbia Center 

8- City Hall Auxiliary Tower

9- Banhammer Regional HQ

10- University Faculty of Medicine

11- Northern Territories Congressional House

12- Bank of Cathnoquey Tower

13- Silverfield Casino

14- John H. Whitemane Tower

15- CathCorp Tower


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Here is a view of the historical city hall, where most ceremonial and political functions are concentrated. Administrative services are located further downtown in their own auxiliary building, one of the tallest in the city.

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The construction of skyscrapers in the city has been spurred by the low tax rates and reputation of the county as a tax haven, but not just. Good public transit links have also encouraged real estate tycoons to base their offices here, though the city still has a high rate of car dependancy.


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One possible explanation is the fact that the M3, one of the nation's major road links, directly serves most of the city's denser neighborhoods. Initially it was supposed to loop around the Bay, with its top half slashing through Ashford; however as of today the M3 links Ashford from the east, before curving all the way around Timber Lake and southwest towards Wellsborough. Grassroot efforts have successfully prevented the final piece of the M3 loop from being completed : a bridge that would go over the mouth of the lake, above the salt marshes, in a more direct southwest direction. Environmentalists and NIMBY lobbyists claimed the destruction caused to the bay would be inacceptable, and most traffic would be rerouted across parts of the city much like this one, causing massive noise pollution.


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It's not that Ashford doesn't have good public transportation, though. The central station is actually rather quiet as far as mainline traffic is concerned, but it is also served by the Surburban Ashford Transit Authority's Blue Line and most of the city's bus lines.


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Meanwhile, other parts of the city, especially the southern, Khajiit parts of the city, are served by the SATA Green Line light rail service.


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However, both these services have a terrible reputation : old trains and trams, slow service, usual delays, high fares... only compounded by the systematic integration of bus services with rail stations, so that many people travelling from the outer surburbs end up forced to transfer to a slow bus or to the Blue or Green lines.


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Still, subway service is actually the primary mode among the city's university students and remains quite popular for inhabitants of the more far flung communities.


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Downtown itself, however, is easily walkable, with most major buildings within 1 mile of each other. There are also several cycling and sport initiatives in town, though the city council has never made good on promises to make Ashford more cyclable. State Street, one of the city's main north-south axis, traditionally hosts the beginning of the Ashford Marathon every Last Seed.

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Let's take some quick views of different parts of the city. In Southwest Ashford, we have Amity Hill, a primarily poor, Khajiit neighbourhood that rigidly follows the downtown grid (or "standard grid", oriented North). Green Line trams run along Pelletine Avenue.


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East Ashford and, beyond that, North East Ashford, are located in a hilly area and do not follow any grid conventions.


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North East Ashford stretches for miles and miles into the valley...


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Places such as Coleridge Heights are made up of affluent and cozy neighborhoods, nested among the rolling hills, populated by lawyers and accountants, but also middle class families, further pushing the historical, poorer residents further away from their decades old homes...


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There is one last thing that should be told about Ashford : its music scene, authoritative in Cathnoquey, Tamriel and the entire world. The live music business has defined Ashford for decades, through its nightlife venues in Midtown, its music festivals, or its many cabaret and music halls. Ashford even has its own homebrew label, AshTown Records, which since the 70s has signed a number of high profile performers of many genres, notably rap, hiphop, R&B, but also jazz. 
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The music business in Ashford is much like the finance and accountancy sectors that lead the city by day : respectable and impressive on the outside, but don't stare too deep into the abyss, lest the city's old demons of crime and drug trafficking stare back into you. A city of contrasts, clinging to its good reputation, but where it becomes clear the problems haven't been solved, but merely pushed to the backstreets...

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But we'll get to explore more of the city as we go! I shall leave you on this final overview of the central parts of the city. I have several entries lined up, so I hope you enjoy the reboot :D 

See you in Cathnoquey!

Linoa06

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Hey everyone! For our last entry here in Vesper Bay we'll take a tour of the town by night (and a couple more pictures)

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A plane taxis off the runway just after rain. Vesper Bay is one of the wettest towns in Cathnoquey.


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Sprinter train on its way across town.


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Night time! Here's a picture of the main train station - the architecture here is more utilitarian than aesthetic.


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Vesper Bay faces drunk driving problems. Tonight, once again, ambulances from two different hospitals rush to the scene of yet another accident in town. Or did it have something to do with catching virtual critter? Whatever - concentrate on the road, the officials say, but the message is not going through.


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Downtown Vesper Bay at night. The trams eventually stop running, but the hilly CBD remains a bustling hub of nighttime activity.


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A street in upper downtown...


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...Plenty of brick buildings merge with newer construction here.


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The CBD is quite built-up; here's a view from the University campus just across the river.


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Tram tracks in upper downtown lead to one of the storage depots. 


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Not everywhere in Vesper Bay is shiny and new.. Some residential areas are, on the opposite, decrepit, grey, covered in trash and concrete - the inner city slums haven't quite been cleared out in this city, and outer high-density development isn't very inspiring either. Yet there's a low crime rate, pushed in part through massive funding to local education programs and the building of way more jail cells than it really needs.


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Those community programs often deal with sporting events - and that's a good thing if you like sports, as there are plenty of venues and facilities for pretty much anything you want.


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The new Sprinter Line stays in operation most of the night, albeit with longer waiting times and police officers in every carriage from 10pm to 5am. Great for college students on their way home after a night of binge drinking! It's subsidized by the city council to keep them off the roads. Soon the trams will run 24/7 too.


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Along Westlake Avenue, though, night time is a much quieter experience. By day Westlake is a commercial road, but at night it sees little traffic, and everything is shut.


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A lone person wanders around the area along the very narrow roads that are typical of Vesper Bay neighbourhoods. 


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Federal Avenue by night. Predictably the city's main north-south thoroughfare is busy with freight at this time as it passes over the river. Notice the straight LRT bridge on the side with a tram heading to depot for the night. This is where the Blue yellow Federal Line splits from the infill to follow its own right-of-way.

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These houses seem quite close to the CBD, in hindsight... Vesper Bay may be a smaller town, but it does have a well-defined skyline.


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One can guess the city's expansion by contrasting the city lights with the dark hills. There are plenty of suburbs behind them, however.


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The M4 interstate on approach to the southern suburb of New

Balmora.
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Roadworks! The noodle interchange (dubbed "The Noodle" by locals, who even named a dish after it) clearly defines the western edge of downtown. The highway to the south is slated to eventually make way for a bikeway and green parkland area, but motorists' associations have lobbied for years to keep it open.


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Landing at the airport by night. Good thing the airport is equipped with a glide-slope localizer and all the modern tools to keep planes landing despite the very frequent fog.


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Noise abatement measures only change the direction of landing (from the south), but some planes do still come in at night.


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Let's finish on an overview of Vesper Bay at night. The CBD area is actually fairly small (1 square mile?) but densely packed.

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And here comes the new bus/rail map for the city. Some argue it's retained it's flaws, but the city council is pushing towards proudly displaying it everywhere it can. The black goes well with the signage's own black background. Some of you noticed how the Federal line changed to yellow -  this is all part of the massive rebranding and revitalization of the rail network (thanks to those shiny federal funds that Glenvale won't enjoy) to make it look more attractive and reliable.

Anyway, this concludes our tour of Vesper Bay! I hope to start a new project after this (grided low-density cities anyone?) so I hope you've enjoyed reading :D Thanks a lot!

 


 

Linoa06

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Hello and welcome back to Cathnoquey! Today we're going back to Vesper Bay, in the Kingscote Highlands.

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Last we left, a new tram network had just opened. Well, a month later, a new piece of rail infrastructure has just begun operations : the Metro Sprinter, a commuter rail service mostly operating along the West Coast Main Line!


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The Highlands are a very forested area of Cathnoquey, and at such there are several loggeries in the area. That's a lot of rail traffic, and freight convoys depart every day towards New Wigmore or Glenvale Harbour. It's going to be tough to weave in a new rail network along this busy stretch of railway.

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The new rail line begins miles north of Vesper Bay, on the once disused Poacher Line. It's been reopened to freight two years ago, and now links several deep northern communities to the heart of the Highlands. The Poacher Line ends here, at Kettering station, just in sight of the city.


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The uneven ground at Kettering probably deters people from parking here, doesn't it? The station was built in a rush. Kettering is a mostly upper-class village, and there was a fair share of opposition.


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The West Coast Main Line is also a busy passenger line. It links the cities of Westchurch and New Wigmore together and forms the rail backbone of the entirety of the West coast. Here's the southbound Kingscote Local from Westchurch terminating at Vesper Bay meeting with an express train to Albany via Westchurch. The Kingscote Local is actually operated by a different company, the Morrowind-based Hlaalu Railway Co. 


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Once merged, the Sprinter trains continue along the line, which passes through Sign Hill Valley. A station was planned here, but eventually the project was abandonned.


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Just a little further, though, and we come to Jonestone station. Local trains used to stop here, but now only Metro Sprinter trains do. Jonestone is still a village, but we've finally entered the suburbs. 


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Here's a northbound Metro Sprinter in its brand new livery. There are several at-grade crossings between Jonestone and the CBD that have yet to be upgraded.


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It takes some time, but eventually we arrive at Vesper Bay Central Station. This is the station foregrounds, just by the Board of Trade tower. Central Station is the hub of the LRT and bus networks, right in the middle of downtown.


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The station is in fact made of two half stations, split by the LRT line that runs through the middle. Metro Sprinter uses platforms 1 and 2 along with most through services, while services terminating at Vesper Bay use platforms 3 and 4.


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The LRT line stays right in the middle for better interchange between the different modes. Buses also use the LRT tracks, hence the paving. The LRT loops underground, a little further away.


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Another view of Central Station in the morning, before the rush hour. 


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Now we leave Central Station eastbound. The terrain there is very hilly, and there are several such high bridges across town. 


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Following Akaviri theming, our next stop at Mowbray is a large station and a very popular commuter hub, with several bus lines out of the city. The station itself is also home to the Local Control Post, tasked with oversight over local traffic.


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Sprinter train leaves Mowbray onto another high bridge.


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The train goes on for two miles as the suburbs give way to untamed wilderness and forestry...


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North Oxbridge station is not quite built yet; it was supposed to open on Sprinter's first day of operations, but so much remains to be done. Local residents are looking at a few extra months of waiting, a political nightmare for local councilors.


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Sprinter then heads on into the woods! There are several sidings and many loggeries on this side of the bay.


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Finally, the end of the line : South Oxbridge station, 12 miles away from Central Station. 


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A train waits for passengers at South Oxbridge. 


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That's it for Phase 1 of the Sprinter project. The funding for Phase 2 has been approved, and it would see the line extended as far as Wellesley, 30 miles south, but completion is not expected until 5E145.


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Nevertheless, the line is already expected to help alleviate traffic by a fair margin. However, critics point out that most of the potential passengers come from Wigston and Wellesley, which aren't served yet, and that Phase 1 should have been more ambitious and reached Wigston.


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A freight train meets a Metro Sprinter on the Poacher Line. 

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Further ahead on the Poacher Line. The Sprinter brings a fresh wave of modernity despite the increased sales tax. Vesper Bay is a very crowded city, and any efforts to relieve congestions are more than welcome. Already groups are pushing towards a Phase 3 line that would link the South Shore to Vesper Bay proper.

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Strip map of the new line. Possibly this will eventually become the general design of the entire train map.

And that's it for today :D Hope you enjoy, and I'll see you around :D

Linoa06

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Hey everyone! Here's to introduce something a little different. I'll admit I've burnt out on Cities Skylines, but my universe doesn't stop there!

It's not obvious to everyone, but Cities Skylines is not the first game from Colossal Order, So I've decided to look back at my first Colossal Order cities,  back in 2011, with a city set in Cities in Motion 1. Obviously, the quality of the pictures won't be as good as with CSL, but it's quite fun to see where Skylines first started and how its design changed over the games. :)

This being CIM1, you were in charge of the transit system only, though many players liked to use the map editor to build their own cities. CIM1 wasn't a city builder, but you could still build sprawling metropolises, and with a lot of patience you could also put a LOT of detail (all of the mailboxes, streetlights etc. in this entry are handplaced). Roads followed a 45 degree angle grid back then, and the city did not automatically grow. At best, creators actually built their city by adding buildings in certain years for their players to build a transit network in what seemed like a changing city.

Off we go to a journey across Tamriel. First let's board a plane to Anvil City, in Cyrodiil!

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It's a long journey...but eventually we land at Anvil. We are the 24rd of Midyear, 5E137 and Tamriel is going through some serious political trouble... again, as the Gold Coast seeks to leave from what it sees as imperialistic Cyrodiil.

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Over the centuries, the town has gone through a lot of turmoil. It is quite different from other cities in Cyrodiil, in that it was destroyed in the Great War in the early Fifth Era and reconstructed with Cathnoquey architecture and planning in mind. It is a city of 700.000 souls, including 100.000 Bosmer, with the metropolitan area home to four million people.

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Well, at least we landed in interesting times. Anvil Airport is not a huge airport, and is constantly on the brim of breaking down due to overcrowding.

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The CBD proper spreads over a few square miles, but as a general rule, Anvil is a very low-density town. We take the District Line, the city's oldest metro line, which takes the shape of a horseshoe to serve the airport and the western suburbs on the other side.

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The District Line is fully elevated, which is great to take in the sights. Very quickly, our train travels through blocks and blocks of dark brick townhouses.

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Arlington is especially known as a poor district on the edge of the CBD with high crime and unemployment. Good thing we are on an Airport train, which does not stop at a few stations during rush hour.

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Finally, we get to the CBD proper. The Waterfront Line streetcars go back and forth on Broadway, the city's main east-west street, directly continuing from the Gold Road Parkway to the Imperial City. Not much remains here from the Fourth Era - everything is new, everything is modern, but at least everything is colourful. Other "new towns" and redeveloped central areas weren't so lucky.

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There are several parks in Anvil, but of note is Dibella Square, at the heart of the city, with its mix of late Fourth Era decorations and modern dazzling billboards. The city is quite unlike anything else in the Gold Coast, which may explain the rejection of the Republic.

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Most of the CBD is actually built on landfill above the former harbour. When the old Castle was destroyed 100 years ago, decision was made not to replace it, too. Instead a park was made on top of the rubble.

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Red Sabre Stadium is one of two major stadium in the city, and hosts the local baseball team, Anvil Grey Foxes, named after the mystical thief from legend. Just behind, the pyramid-shaped Millenium Tower rises above the skyline - just slightly over 250m, thanks to its mast. There's a special lift that goes right to the top, to the SkyRestaurant, one of the country's best places to eat thanks to its founder, the enigmatic Gourmet.

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Several freeways link the CBD to the rest of the metropolitan area. Here is the A2 Gold Road Parkway, which continues to the Imperial City.

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On the other edge of the business district, housing projects spring like mushrooms. The Northern Gardens are, to many, all but "gardeny" - more like blocks of hard concrete. The Housing Union of Anvil and Kvatch found that at least half of all habitations are unsafe for habitation, yet the marginalized beastfolk community all too often ends up stacked in those buildings.

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Those claims were all but dismissed by City Hall. Imperial Mayor Borys Leordamus is more interested with his own business than actually running the city, and it's better to sweep trouble under the rug, or so the public opinion goes...

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Let's go back to Anvil Central Station. It's quite literally the area's biggest transit hub, with the underground Broadway and Crosstown Lines connecting with the elevated District line on the surface, as well as the railway station proper. It is built in a peculiar way, with four tracks cutting just below the square for long-distance trains, and eight tracks forming a "lower deck" just below, used for regional and local commuter trains. 

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A Waterfront double-decker tram can be seen in the infill here on Broadway. Because of zoning rules most citizens of Anvil can travel on the tram for free, but tourists still need to pay to admire the Broadway skyline thanks to the tram's glass ceiling. Hightown, the western side of Broadway, is home to many of the city's hotels.

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The Broadway Line connects the CBD to the Narrows, an area just to the east of the main CBD that is currently becoming a leading business centre (though recent political developments are destroying these prospects fast as markets plunge and panic)

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The Narrows are also home to Willets Arena, where we are now queueing to watch a game of Blitzball.

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The Gold Coast University is a leader in the fields of genetics and technology in all of Tamriel. Gotta love strolling in the gardens.

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More townhouses...They are a touristic sight in and of themselves!

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But after getting bored of walking around, we go to relax at the Whitmond Golf Club. It's only one commuter rail station away, at Whitmond Station.

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Then we come back by taxi. Hammerfell Parkway A-23 squeezes between the Northern Gardens and more residential (and upmarket) developments. The freeway system does define the city's landscape and spacial organization quite a lot, especially for a Tamrielic city.

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The A-23 links up the northern and western suburbs to the CBD, but it is also a key interstate road that links directly to the port of Anvil.

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It also links up to the A-20, which bypasses the city core entirely. You've probably noticed just how congested all of these roads are. The government is trying to introduce trams in outlying areas...

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...such as the Rosedale Line which runs ten miles away from the CBD.

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It connects to the commuter network, too, which has spurred growth alongside this outlying thoroughfare in the middle of suburban sprawl land.

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Another project is the Fremont Line, a tram line that seeks to unlock the back alleys of the Narrows and Nearer Gweden.

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And these tram lines may eventually be converted into heavy rail, linking to the very small Bellamy Line which runs downtown for only seven stations. So far, though, there are 87 unique tram or train stations across town, which is a 20% increase over 5E120.

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Still, linking up a congested town isn't necessarily an easy task. Gated communities, such as the landfill Paradise Island in the southern Narrows, are rather common and increase car dependency in the entire metropolitan area.

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Anyway, enough touring! Let's stop at a hypermarket (on the edge of the harbour area, because of all the travelling on the public transport network).

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A last smoke on Dibella Park where life carries on despite the political turmoil..and then we shall take the train to further places in Cyrodiil and Morrowind! Adventure awaits!

Oh, and of course for any of these entries involving a transit network...a map! This network is fully functional in CiM1, with the Broadway Line having highest ridership (10k in game numbers)

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And that's it for now! Let me know what you think, and I will post more CiM1 / CiM2 stuff soon again :P

 

See you around!

Linoa06

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Heya! Let's go back to Vesper Bay! 

Now Vesper Bay is not the prettiest town. In fact it's my go-to town for testing new mods and assets, more than a really CJ worthy town. But this is where I built my first tram network, so let's take a look:D

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Today let's focus on the tram / LRT. There's also a BRT in the making though!

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The journey begins at the train station (which is being rebuilt)...

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For some time, the line runs directly on the street, and passes in front of the city hall.

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After that, the line goes in the middle of Federal Avenue. Most of its run is in the middle of two-lane roads. Express buses can also use the tram lanes.

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Two trams cross at the foot of Canal Street.

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A few stops later, the trams stop in the middle of Ilessan Circle, which doubles as a very nice square to stroll into and a bus hub.

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After that, the line splits into two branches.

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The Green Line branch splits west to serve the towering residential complexes and housing projects uptown.

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Quickly the line stops at the new Ministry of Magic building. Most stops are like this : a platform in the middle of the road and pedestrian crossings at either end.

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Finally the line turns back south on Ashmont Avenue, which is known for its middle-density building developments along it.

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The P61 roadways goes under Ashmont Avenue and the tram tracks here.

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The line carries on until the depot at the edge of the city. This ensures the Green Line serves higher density areas and links them straight to downtown in less than 20 minutes.

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Meanwhile, the Blue Line carries on south. The Blue Line has twice the ridership of the Green Line as it links the second biggest city in the area, New Balmora.

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The tram line actually goes on its own tracks from there on. Pedestrians and bicycles also run on this new bridge, which frees up the old bridge to vehicular traffic only. It runs parallel to Federal Avenue. You can see how the tram lines runs almost straight, while the roadways goes up and down to follow the terrain.

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View of the tram tracks running parallel; between the tracks and the roadway the city has encouraged commercial development.

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There is a special cycle lane next to the tracks which goes all the way to New Balmora.

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The line then reaches New Balmora. Initially this was the end of the line and it went around the loop, but since then the line was extended into downtown New Balmora.

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The line crosses the A4 road...

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Finally it ends in the middle of New Balmora, by the bus terminal!

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However the system doesn't really go to other places. Almost no buses in industrial districts...

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...or in the countryside.

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And if you want to head to the quarries and mines around the city, you're so out of luck.

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Same if you live in the far flung southern suburbs!

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But hey, maybe a BRT could solve these problems! After all, BRTs are more flexible and cheaper than LRTs, and can match the speed of LRTs, albeit less confortably. Despite more labour and maintenance costs they're decided on an east west busway anyway! :D

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Finally, a map of the network. Vesper Bay authorities decided to go for the spartan, cheap look - more cynical passengers find it fitting, as they claim the network is always plagued with delays and breakdowns. Hmh. :/

Anyway thanks for reading! I'll try to post more regular entries about my winter city soon enough :3

 

Linoa06

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Cathnoquey isn't just a land of green hills and rolling meadows. There is a city, in the far north of the country, a city of snow and almost constant cold weather. Welcome to Northpoint...

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The town was built in a valley, nested between the Neville Brook Hills and the Sterling Range. 

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For up-and-coming and hopelessly irreverant urban planner Robert Preston, this could be the place that would kickstart his career.

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As the plane began its final approach to Northpoint Airport (NPR), Preston finally got a look at the city he was to call home.

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The people of Northpoint were rugged. Would he be able to blend in?

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His plane finally landed on the near frozen runway. Luckily, there was no snowstorm that day. 

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After what seemed like an eternity, the plane finally came to a stop by the domestic terminal.

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Once he retrieved his luggage, Preston headed to the near empty parking lot. He briefly considered hopping on a streetcar into town, but he decided to hail a cab instead.

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"4500 Nahakara Avenue", he chirped as he sat in the warm car.

The Khakiit taxi driver took a cautious look at the Imperial. "Khajiit drives slowly, yes? The snow has not been plowed this morning. Khajiit hates traffic divertions, but this one has no choice."

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The way out of the airport was clear, sure enough. Preston looked at his folders. One of his priorities, as set out by the City Board of Trustees, was to improve north-south traffic from the airport to the city centre.

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He quickly realised the job would be harder than he thought.

"Why don't you use a motorway?" he asked the driver, who scoffed. "Motorway? We are not in Glenvale, this is our main road into town."

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Soon enough, the road became a fast but narrow road on the east bank of the river. There was a faster way, but it was closed down because of the weather conditions. Preston look a look at his files again. This road definitely needed upgrading, he noted.

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At least the road avoided a tedious drive through the Windsong residential district...

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Ten miles ahead, he smiled as they finally reached the heart of the city.

"See this shop, southerner? Khajiit always goes at the end of his shift. They have the best hamburgers in all of the North Territories."

Somehow, this relieved Preston a little. The Glenvale man had no clue what the people of Northpoint were like, and seemed to be under the impression they ate the most disgusting things.

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They drove through the business district. No high-rises here. There was little need for high rises. The population was only 100.000 souls, barely more than Westport and a mere fourth-to-fifth of the population of Glenvale. Land was relatively cheap, and earthquakes were relatively common in this part of the country.

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The heart of the city, the Mall, was little more than a battered and muddy field. Preston thought of changing that, too, but would the locals accept his mingling?

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Some of the taller towers were residential complexes and hotels. Whittler Avenue, the main east-west through-way, was better built, he thought.

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image.jpgHe smirked at the public curling facilities. The Khajiit driver noticed that.

"Amusing, is it not? This one may be a cat-person, but this one won several prizes on these rinks. This one came third last year, during the '36 Briers."

Preston only slightly nodded. This was the first time he ever heard of curling.

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The car finally stopped on the side of the road, in front of Preston's hotel room, on the corner of Whittler and Nakahara. Preston got off, took a look at the ruined fort, before making his way in. His hotel was decidedly warmer and his accommodation more like an apartment than a hotel room - all paid for by the Board of Trustees who hired him.

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It was barely 3.30 in the afternoon when the sun began setting down. Preston decided to have a walk through the city and a bite to eat.

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He hopped on a D line streetcar, and stopped at the Arboretum.

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He learned, streetcars were the main way to get around in the town. While there were bus lines, mostly concentrated along Whittler Avenue, streetcars served the main population centres and were far more reliable.

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He reached the Newquay district on foot, and ended up dining at the Red Mountain, a restaurant serving Morrowind and Vvardenfell specialities.

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On his way home, he noticed firemen rushing to a building on fire. He watched from afar for about ten minutes, but the cold was too biting, so he decided to head home.

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Preston fell asleep. The next day, he would meet the Board of Trustee, and his work would truly begin. But what would he do? The locals seemed grumpy and introverted. He truly was as far as he could possibly get from Glenvale. 

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But tomorrow is another day, full of opportunity. 

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And that concludes this entry! I hope you liked, and feel free to leave some feedback. :3

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Oh, and that's a map of the streetcar network!

See you next time!

 

Linoa06

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Heya everyone! It's been one year since I began this CJ and I'm thrilled that it's still going on! Today we're taking a commute in this town :

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In the morning mist you can even see the smog coming from the glorious chimneys of the great industrial areas that cover the town and its inhabitants in soot and riches.

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The journey begins south, in a residential district called South Lexington. This is the A4 road from Glenvale, which here is not a freeway, but instead a 1x1 road with local lanes. It gets really jammed at rush hour.

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Once reaching the Morningstar Bridge, finally traffic can use two lanes. When you finally drive up onto the bridge, you sigh with relief. Maybe you won't be late to the office after all!

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From there, you drive on towards the CBD. You have two choices : you can try the waterbank expressway, which is hardly ever used because of its steep tolls...

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Or you can be cheap and carry on driving on the A4. As you drive into town the road even becomes a 3-lane way with sound barriers. 

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And all of this to drive from this neighbourhood...

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...into downtown, some 10 miles away.

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Somehow you beat the traffic! Or is it that you just went extra early? Either way, the streets are still quiet and the shops are still closed.

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Here are your shoppers and office workers! They're stuck on a bridge above the motorway, predictably enough. 

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You wish there was a real mass transit system, beyond the inadequate buses and streetcars...but the federal grants have instead gone in the refurbishment of the small Vesper Bay Campus instead.

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Not that it's a bad thing, really - it's the leading university in the country as far as biology is concerned, and many talented barristers and laywers also come from these halls.

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With the federal grants, the university could improve quality of life for its students, and build sports facilities.

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The parkings didn't really get the same treatment though. That's the least they could do, right?

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The big addition this year isn't even the university, though. And no, it's not a proper transit system either. The Ministry of Magic has finally opened!

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The Ministry complex (which cost billions to the country) takes the form of a giant tower which dominates the south reaches of downtown. Landfills were turned into beautiful, weaving parks.

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The Ministry hosts all services for the small yet vibrant wizarding community of Cathnoquey. Cathnoquey seeks to become a leader in magical expertise - something Cyrodiil has excelled at for the past few centuries, ever since the fall of the Aldmeri Dominion.

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Personally, if I have to commute anywhere, I'd love my workplace to offer me a massive blooming park to relax during lunch break.

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But for all the talks of modernity and forward thinking, the town still lacks a definite public transport network. The buses are crammed, the trams are unreliable, and everything just costs so much! But hey, maybe we install a modern LRT system next entry ;)

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And that's it for today! Next time we're beginning to improve our transit system so it connects more of the city together! :D Thanks for reading!

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And here's a map of the general area. Thanks :D See you next time

Linoa06

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Heya! Welcome back to Vesper Bay. Today we're going to have a little tour of the downtown area! But first - a new map!

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Can you spot Vesper Bay? It's a bit out of the way, isn't it?

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Uptown, the southern area of the CBD, follows a regular grid. It's convenient for navigating the town, for sure, but some say it lacks character.

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Meanwhile, Downtown is the northern part, bounded by the rail tracks - so far only Downtown is really built up. It's the nexus of everything : buses, trams, and roadways.

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The CBD is served by the airport, 3.5 miles away.

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Vesper Bay faces the Padomaic Ocean towards Tamriel, and at such gets a lot of rain. The city is especially prone to floods.

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In the middle, three of the city's most important buildings. The tallest tower (on the right?) is Everdawn Tower. In the foreground, we have the Board of Trade building. The white tower is the Flatiron Tower. We can also see the bus terminal, as well as the Rockery Tower behind the Aedric Cathedral of Arkay.

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Close-up of the Cathedral of Arkay. Arkay is a very important deity in the Aedric religion, which is very strong in Vesper Bay : he is said to rule over the Wheel of Life and Death itself. Many high-profile funerals occur at the Cathedral.

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Close-up of the core downtown area. The station and tram stop can be seen on the left-hand side.

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Obviously there's more to the city than the core downtown area. This is 3250 Ilessan Av, on the border between downtown and uptown.

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In the downtown area many of the streets are narrow 2x2 lane roads, simply because they were upgraded after the construction of many of these high-rises.

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Downtown is also crossed by canals. Canal Street is the place to be at night, with hotels on one side and all sorts of bars and nightclubs on the other side.

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Blitzball and baseball : the two major sports in Vesper Bay. The two stadiums are actually side-by-side!

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One of the major links into the CBD is Noodle Junction, where roads branch off the A4 roadway into the industrial area and Uptown.

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Look how narrow the Flatiron Tower is! In the foreground, we can also see the City Hall.

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Of course, there is a lot of sprawling in Vesper Bay. The terrain around the city is hilly and grids usually merge into one another once out of the downtown core.

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Railways also stretch from the city outwards, though many of them only carry cargo traffic.

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The main passenger link from New Wigmore, looking towards downtown. We're quite a few miles out by now, and that's great for anyone who wants to live near more natural areas, yet not completely lose out on the convenience of suburban or urban life. Too bad there's no commuter rail...

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Anyway, that's all for today! Next time we'll talk about the new building in town : the Ministry of Magic! Unless I post something for the 1st anniversary of this CJ. :)

Please please leave some feedback, comments, y'know! Hope you enjoy and see you next time!

Linoa06

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Hello everyone! Today we're going high definition...can you guess where?

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That's right! We're going to Vesper Bay, a city located on the west coast of Cathnoquey. Here :

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Anyway! Let's take a tour at the city we're going to spend the next few entries on.

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Vesper Bay is a middle-sized city, with approximately 170.000 residents in the city proper. 

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Vesper Bay features a tram line which for the most part has its own track or at least its own lane.

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It is mostly known for its University, one of the few institutions really working well in town.

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There are quite a few office buildings in Vesper Bay. The biggest is bound to be the Everdawn Tower, behind these two buildings.

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The city is actually quite hilly, and a lot of housing is of the traditional north Cathnoquey style - shifting away from the terraced houses common in Westport.

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Many of the buildings in Vesper Bay date from quite some time ago now. Many of the districts are in need of refurbishment. The town is not usually very rich, and unemployment is very high.

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Vesper Bay has its own airport, which handles the majority of the local air traffic.

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Vesper Bay Airport has a whooping four runways! However, only one of them really is used by the biggest jets, while the one that crosses all the other ones is reserved to general aviation traffic.

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Vesper Bay is built in a grid-like fashion, though there are many grid plans across the city.

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Outside town, farmlands and meadows roll over the hills...

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Vesper Bay features a good highway network, mostly made up of the A4 to the north and southwest, and the P1 and P6 roadways to the west and southeast.

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Not all of these roadways are motorways, however - even the P4 is cut in half at some point, though there are plans to finally link up both parts of the route.

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Other roads out of the city are much quieter, of course.

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The city is at the heart of the Wheat Belt, and is also a big producer of dairy products and timber.

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And that's it for today! Cool new buildings, trams, trains, and a lot of other stuff await! Hope you enjoyed this quick tour and well, see you next time :))

 

Linoa06

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Heya there!

This is probably one of the last entries on Westport. I'm turning my sight to two new cities with Snowfall out (as well as a Fallout 4 side project), so let's wrap Westport up!

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The sun sets on Westport, but for the residents of HSP Perwyn North, it's another day of toil and hard labour.

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In the free world, though, it seems it will be another clear night tonight.

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Many people are headed home. The nights are cold in Westport, and the winds are bone-chilling.

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The skies are clear, but it's a new day that begins for the seedy casinos and run-down pubs of the city.

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The bus pulls away from the fast lane bus stop...

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Another comes, filled not with commuters but hazy-eyed revelers.

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The town hall is definitely quiet tonight. Sometimes, though, debates last until dawn.

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Today, the fountain in front of it is the place to be. It's a popular meeting spot, usually between two pubs or before heading home.

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Nightclubs and even the Cheese Wheel operate at night, and the police have long given up checking their licences. Some kinds of crime are an issue in Westport, and many businesses are rumoured to be fronts for less savoury organisations. 

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For instance, there's a wave of arsons befalling the city.  For firefighters and the police, nights aren't necessarily restful. No one knows who's behind the attacks, only that they happen at night, and always target certain shops.

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Meanwhile, far from any patrol, drag racers and members of the Dunmeri mafia enjoy the empty roads and speed past understaffed police stations.

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Most citizens would rather sweep criminal activity under the rug. Westport needs to keep its reputation as a beach resort pristine, after all.

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A new day comes, and banishes the shadows of Westport away. There are tourists to accomodate, and businesses to be run, a small respite for an ambivalent Dunmeri city.

Anyway, that's it for now. Feel free to leave some feedback as always and thanks for reading :)

 


 

 

 

 

 

Linoa06

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Hiya there! Today we're staying in Westport a big longer as I wanted to get this entry in. Infrastructure time!

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Westport is one the island's transport hub, especially for cargo. There are several small hubs, though most trains head on towards the harbour. Here it crosses the A9 road, on the three miles where it is otherwise a separated motorway.

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Many trains cross the road each day, and people are beginning to consider building an overpass.

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There are also plans to eventually upgrade the entire A9 to a motorway. After all, it's the spine of Perwyn Island, and parts in Dragon's Landing are already converted. Nevertheless, many feel this would cost far more than they can afford.

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This is the Trumpet, which is the main point of entry into Westport itself.

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Further south on the A9, Hlaalu Circle is another crucial intersection and entry point to both the Harbour and the main town.

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The A9 is joined by the railway line at this point, and both run almost straight away from the city.

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Westport Airport is one of two passenger airfields on the island. There are quite a few flights each day, mostly commuter flights from the mainland. Most bigger planes land at Dragon's Landing instead.

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To get to the airport, cars must cross the railway. There's a railway station that serves the airport, too, but it's only served by local trains. Taxis are very important in Westport.

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The harbour is the island's biggest. It is directly located on the West coast of the peninsula, facing Morrowind hundreds and hundreds of miles away.

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Because of that, an important industrial zone developed around it.

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Slightly hidden here is the Vault-Tec plant, which produces parts for nuclear shelters around the country.

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There are also oil fields on the peninsula and offshore. Many are surprised to know Westport actually produces oil - and makes a lot of money from it.

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There's a lot of smog coming from the industrial district, though. Sometimes the smell wafts into downtown, and the municipality isn't quite sure how to fix it.

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Here's the main cargo station for Westport.

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And here's the main passenger station. This is the Chirpy Express, the train that runs almost non-stop between Westport and Dragon's Landing.

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Most trains are local or at least semi-express though, and take a lot longer to link the two cities. There are no longer any passenger branch lines; though many of them are still open to freight traffic.

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This train is running on a former branch line. This one heads to the Westport Chocolate Factory, which is owned by an Akaviri firm from the faraway city of Mitakihara.

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That's it for today! I hope you enjoyed :D Feedback is always appreciated :) See you next time!

 

 

 

Linoa06

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Hiya and welcome to Westport! I have two new cities in the making and a new title design, but today I want to showcase Westport's simpler side, away from the resorts and the city centre. Also, I've finally got my PC fixed, so from now on everything should be in high res!

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Westport is a highly rated seaside resort, but the capital of Perwyn Island truly remains a simple place. In Westport, nature is everywhere, from the rocky embankments to the variety of trees everywhere.

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Even in the outskirts of town, such as the Maargan neighbourhood, there are huge parks for people to stroll in and enjoy.

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Some people live in flats, which means more land is left to nature as Westport residents build up rather than away.

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Not that there isn't any sprawl in Westport. Terraced houses are a commonplace sight in the city and the villages around it.

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Many of the streets have bike lanes and are relatively wide to begin with, too. This was probably done on purpose to avoid a feeling of crowding all too common in many towns.

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There are several villages around town. The peninsula is criss-crossed by windy roads.

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The A9 road is easily the biggest road in town as it heads towards Dragon's Landing, but in Westport it's not even separated.

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That is an attempt to mitigate the environmental impact of the airport, one of two big airfields on Perwyn Island.


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Westport is known for more than being the state capital or for its seaside resort. There are many stables in Westport. Horse-riding is one of the city's prides, and locally it's the biggest spectator sport according to TV habits. This may have to do with the local Blitzball and football teams being substandard, or maybe it's due to Westport hosting the start of the yearly Equestrian Tour, an endurance race that circles the country in fifteen days.

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Terrain around Westport is actually quite hilly. This village, known as Wyrkin Mora, is located in a valley in the heart of the peninsula. This does shelter it a little from the sea winds.

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Wyrkin Mora Community College is Perwyn Island's highest performing high school, and is looking at a four-year reconstruction program to greatly expand on the campus.

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If education isn't a problem, there is a constant complaint amongst these residents that the fire and health services take too long to reach them. Indeed, most hospitals and fire stations are concentrated in Westport itself.

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Other residents live right by the cliff. In 5E69, a storm washed away many houses on the coastline, but this hasn't deterred promoters from building new housing districts again. These beaches make for lovely walks.

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Most of the peninsula is either farmland or forest. This provides more hiking potential to many locals and tourists alike.

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This is also where Dunmer Bleu is made - it's a local blue cheese loved nationally, despite legislators from Glenvale repeatedly trying to outlaw it in the federal Congress.

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In the end, Westport really is a typical quiet countryside town, despite the busy seaside resort activities...or is it this rural charm that drives tourism up?

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Anyway, that's it for now! Next entries we'll explore Dragon's Landing, Westport's big sister on Perwyn Island. Hope you liked it, and see you next time :D

Linoa06

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Hello and welcome back to Cathnoquey as we return in (hopefully) better definition! So today we're going to take a tour of Westport's bigger attractions and more defining buildings.

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Small reminder of where Westport is in Cathnoquey. Visited cities in yellow!

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Westport features a lot of wall-to-wall buildings, as well as sprawling suburbs made of mostly terraced houses. It is the capital of the state of Perwyn, as well as the biggest city on the island of Perwyn itself, with 95.251 inhabitants. It does have its fair share of taller buildings though, so let's take a look at some of them!

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Most of the high rises in town can be seen on this picture. Most were built before 5E125, when new strict laws banned any further high rise development in the downtown area.

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The Cheese Wheel is one of Perwyn's more iconic attractions, despite the fact that it's really just a normal Ferris wheel. Tourist trap or genuine genius? You decide. Westport is a seaside resort town, after all.

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The second-biggest tower - though by far the most well known - is Belmont Tower. It is an all-office building, and home to quite a few big companies. However, half of it is empty as its rent has only gone up after the tower's first owners, Morrow Cloud Holdings Ltd, defaulted on payment and went backrupt.

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Belmont Square, at the foot of the tower, is an important transit hub in Westport. It's also the starting point of most cycle paths in the city. Westport aims to boost its cycling traffic by 200% in the ten coming years.

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The Sirta Corporation, focused on medical research, also built its own labs and HQtower in the middle of Westport.

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The tallest building, so far, is Primrose Tower. It was built before the other two, in 5E06, and sits right next to the Capitol. It houses offices as well as several state departments that had to move out of the ever so crowded Capitol Hall. At such it was funded by the State of Perwyn itself, and half its floors loaned out to various companies.

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Wigmore Bell Tower, in the middle of Wigmore Square, rings every hour from 7am to 7pm. It is also a popular meeting place for political rallies, and is one of the bigger tourist attractions in Westport.

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City Hall Square, with the City Hall in the background and the Cathedral of Stendarr to the west.

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There are several churches, temples and houses of worship in Westport, though most of the population follows the Cult of the Nerevarine. The Nerevarine is the Protector of Morrowind and all Dunmer. Legend holds that the Nerevarine left Tamriel for Akavir, stopping at various places on the way - including Westport, if the archeological evidence is to believe.

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This makes the Temple of the Nerevarine especially important : beyond serving as the Great Temple for all of Cathnoquey, it is one of the Seven Temples that every follower must visit as part of their mandatory Pilgrimage as they retrace the Nerevarine's steps towards Akavir. 

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The polytheistic Aedric faith is still strongly represented though, especially in the non-Dunmer population. Communities such as the Fellowship of Mara are strong in the city. The Cathedral of Mara is known for its extensive Valentine's Day celebrations, which starts the Westport Winter Fair. After all, what would an Aedric chapter focused on teachings of love and harmony be without its own Valentines celebrations?

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Let's move on to Castle Island...without the centuries old castle. A fire broke out, which forced the castle's demolition. The terrain remains empty as the council simply cannot decide if the land should be redeveloped, or if a new mock castle should be built in its stead.

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Now that is one tower complex that generated a lot of controversy. The Lucky 42 Twin Towers are the island's highest residential towers, and were built in 5E125 right on the riverfront. Many residents were very angry at the construction, and these are the towers which pushed a height ban on all future downtown buildings.

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View of the towers. 

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It's by far not the ugliest building - many consider the Freeside Project towers to be some of the least appealing buildings in all of Cathnoquey, but their construction was needed during the 5E90s housing shortages.

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However, in the 5E130s (a few years ago), massive state deregulation in the sectors of gambling and entertainment, coupled with increased domestic tourism, especially to the more natural beaches of Westport, have led people to build more hotels and casinos. The problem is that there was very little land available in the city centre, and they came too late to build tall buildings.

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So what happened is that the formerly residential areas of Briarwood were redeveloped as massive hotel complexes, and in five years no less than eleven hotel towers have sprung up in the middle of the district. Nightclubs and entertainment venues were also built. Critics of the redevelopment have dubbed Westport "WestVegas" or "Glenvale without the sun", though it also strongly boosted the municipal coffers.. 

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Westport is still more of a traditional seaside resort, but there are fears that hotel projects like the Jubilee Resort are changing it into a more costly, less natural destination.

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The municipality has declared that some of the taxes from the hotels and casinos would go towards cleaning up and maintaining the beaches around town in order to ease up some of those fears.

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Not that there is a lot to clean up. Westport has always been a forerunner in green energy, and strives to stop all polluting industry by the 5E140s - though there is still a strong manufacturing economy, and Westport Harbor is a major node in the oil trade.

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Westport Lighthouse, right by some of the most used beaches...

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The Cheese Wheel by night! 

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A fire rages tonight, as Westport slumbers...

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Belmont Tower by night. Several of the offices are illuminated even though they're empty to give the illusion of activity, or at least to mitigate the embarrassment of city officials.

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Here's one last landmark : the clock tower, in front of Primrose Tower, the main Fire Station and very close to the Capitol (poking in the background along with Belmont Tower).

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All of these landmarks make Westport a better seaside resort (at least better than Wodenbury), and locals are generally happy here. That's quite a change from mainland Cathnoquey, isn't it?

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And so we conclude our tour of Westport for today! Many more pictures and stories coming soon though, so stay tuned :D

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Map of Westport, including the major roads and all the bus lines! 

Hope you enjoyed, see you soon!

Linoa06

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Hiya everyone, and happy new year :D

I'm soon getting my PC upgraded, and I've decided to sort of wait until then before posting more of Cathnoquey. That, and the fact that I want to do a Snowfall city at some point.

Today's going to be a bit of a different entry. We're going to take a look at some of the maps of the setting! 

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Hmm..It will be fun to map this! But let's begin with the setting itself.

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If you follow my CJ you've probably noticed it takes place in a modern version of the Elder Scrolls settings. Well, this is the political map of Tamriel in the (alternate) Fifth Era. Cathnoquey is pretty big isn't it? I'm quite happy with this map. Inkscape can be tricky I find.

But let's look at some Tamriel maps first.

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Here's a road map of Cyrodiil in 5E112. The scale was "retconned" a bit later, but at the time it didn't matter, because this map only meant to give context to my Cities in Motion towns. Notice how the borders of Valenwood, Pelletine and Aquenina change in the map above. There was a war in 5E125 that I want to talk about later in the CJ, perhaps as a plot hook for military bases or more unconventional builds within Cities Skylines.

Now this map was one of my first Inkscape maps, and you can tell as some things are just...out of place. Let's look at later and (IMO) better designed transit maps for some of the regions of Cyrodiil (usually those where you could download towns) :

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Two regions, two different styles. The Lower Nibenay one is a map of a very dense regions so showing all the modes was trickier. Colovia, beyond the urban cores, is a bit more empty, though there still are enough lines to make for a lovely and noisy map. :) The first one is meant to look like the old map for transport in NRW (I don't like the new maps at all), while the second one is more original. In both cases they were also challenges in how to present information and so on, for instance the thick stations being the more important onces in the second map.


However, the most amazing map of Tamriel proper is the Imperial City subway. Now I've never done anything with the Imperial City in any game, but designing maps for it was a fun challenge. Here's the old 2012 version (my first foray into Inkscape) :

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Which is...messy. It is meant to mimick the NYC map, hopefully well enough, but it really was just a trial in wiggling lines around. However that's when I realised it actually wasn't difficult. In Inkscape you just drag your lines, and use a grid and some easy tools to help yourself with curves and bends.

In 2015 I decided to redraw the map in the iconic Weekender style. Here are the results (here is the PDF for higher resolution) :

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I'm really happy with the way I make the Moscow style circle line (which is supposed to be a near actual circle) fit with the 45 degree angles in the rest of the map. Inkscape grids really helped here, along with layers.

This map doesn't come alone; there's a commuter rail map too, in the style of 2000s Paris commuter maps If you look at the adjacent maps from Lower Nibenay or Colovia above you'll see the maps actually work with one another too. (PDF : https://www.docdroid.net/MomktAd/imperial-city-metrorail.pdf.html)

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Strip maps which, if you've been to Paris, should remind you a little of the metro and RER strip maps ;) because they were made in 2014 none of them show the N line yet :P

Let's now go to Cathnoquey! The first map is a bit low tech, but it is good for showing what Cathnoquey is and how it looks like.

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The island is actually from Cities XL, and I'm actually not sure at all whether the maps are randomly generated or not..but well :P

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Amesbury map just before the save file got corrupted :(

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Amesbury city map! I feel like I've never really stopped working on it, but it's been half a year already since I lost the save file. :/ 

I used CIMtographer to put the streets together outside of the game, but then I used Inkscape to really draw over them, so the map is not "from" CIMtographer. More artistic freedom that way, and I don't really get the Street Map thingy ^^

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Amery County, showing the surroundings of Amesbury. It's to scale with both Amesbury itself and the CXL map from above. :D 

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Moving on to Glenvale with a simple commuter map...

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Glenvale metro map! The subway still isn't completed, and with trams coming I'll have to work on that! (Yes I need to change the city council logo, but I still haven't gotten around to design one of my own.)

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Glenvale bus map! Here again the grid helped and I took great care with the width of each line - if it's thicker, more buses stop there. I'm not very happy with the way I draw the subway here however...

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Night map ;)

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Schematic major roadways around Glenvale. It's a quick map and to be fair I only use it to keep my CJ consistant though.

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Finally, here's a map from Japanese-themed Akavir! This is a more or less original design, I wanted to make a bilingual map and also see how Japanese works to create slightly different labelling. I find it works quite well ;)

Anyway, let's move on a few other maps that have nothing to do with the TES universe but that I'm still proud of ^^

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I thought I lost this map, but I actually found it back :D 1950 style bus map, though this one comes from another CJ. I've lost the pictures that went with it, sadly :(

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Here's a map I worked on for a d20 Pathfinder setting. I cannot find the Japanese version, which has more stylized labels.

Anyway, that's all for now! For everyone who asks, I use Inkscape which you can find free of charge here and it's always been excellent. It's easy to use too and you can find tutorials pretty much everywhere. If you're serious about making maps or graphic design, Adobe Illustrator is another very good tool - but it's also very pricy. :/

Oh and if you want to see more transit maps, why don't you check the amazing (sort of) official map repositary here on Simtropolis or Cameron Booth's excellent transit map related blog?

I hope this was interesting, and see you soon back in Cathnoquey! :D

 

 

PS - Do not distribute my maps or use them for commercial purposes without my explicit permission.

Linoa06

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Hiya everyone :D

I've been gone a little while (coughfalloutcough) and I've decided to pitch my CJ in a new direction. The country is divided in three : Amesbury represents the older, industrial North, while Glenvale is the picture of a far younger city in what was Cathnoquey's last frontier, the Wild Wild South. But there's a part of the country we've not talked much about : the Dunmeri Wilds and Perwyn Island, the area north-west of the country.

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These areas were settled the first, actually, by Dunmers from House Hlaalu fleeing persecution from Morrowind. However, despite their close ties to the Imperials, an intense competition developed during the Colonization period of the late Fourth Era, as of course the Dunmers had the best harbors and the nicest land. When Cathnoquey held its war of independance from Cyrodiil, skirmishes occured between the two nations.

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They managed to eventually form an uneasy federation, but it broke down into civil war shortly after. It was a bloody war which led to absolutely no change, as the Dunmers rejoined Cathnoquey again - but there is still a strong cultural and geographical divide between Perwyn Island and mainland Cathnoquay. Let's drive to the biggest Dunmeri town today - let's go to Westport!

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As you can see, getting to Westport from Glenvale is harder than it sounds. You can drive - it takes a good 7 hours to reach the city of Wodenbury (featured here), plus three hours of ferry to Maargan. You can also take the train - there are express trains running in just under three hours from Glenvale to Wellsborough, though it also takes three hours to get from Wellsborough to Wodenbury, and once again, there's a ferry to take.
 

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Perwyn Island's main road is in fact not a motorway, but a 2x2 lane road. The traffic simply doesn't justify a more expensive freeway, especially one that doesn't connect to the mainland interstate system...

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The landscape on Perwyn Island is very different from the vast and sunny fields of southern Cathnoquey. Here, hilly terrain is the norm. Perwyn is known for its countless little creeks and rivers that criss-cross the island.

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As we near Westport, the road widens to include a median lane. Westport is home to about 100'000 inhabitants, and the road is the only major roadway feeding into the area.

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Lorde Circle, at the gates of Westport, also known as Perwyn's Largest Roundabout. Historically, it has been the start of the Perwyn Cycling Tour, which is held every summer across the island.

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Westport feels very different from Glenvale. It's sure colder, though not particularly wetter - well, it does rain a lot more here. In recent years though its beaches have become prized by people fleeing the heat waves, forest fires, and beach hysteria common in the south.

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As one of the country's oldest towns, Westport boasts a very large heritage. Castle Hlaalu, also known as the Citadel, is one of the iconic landmarks of the city. It sits on an artificial island, and though it does not guard entry into harbour anymore, it is still a very impressive structure.

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The southern parts of Westport are home to countless canals in what used to be the industrial area of town (the original "Westport"). Since the 50s, it has become a very posh suburb and another destination for tourists.

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Westport is defined not just by its coastline, but also by its flora. The Floral Park in downtown Westport was created in 5E21 as a cricket field but quickly converted into a city park. Various local personalities have donated towards its upkeep, and Westport won the Tamriel Floral City Award twice in recent history : in 5E123 and 5E127.

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There are many other parks in Westport, such as Primrose Park, which replaced the old Guildhall after an electrical fire destroyed the historic building entirely.

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When the traffic jams subside, it can actually be quite nice to drive through the city. Many of the avenues are tree laned.

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There aren't many high-rises in Westport. Belmont Tower and the Shivering Wheel dominate the cityscape. There are many post-Victorian buildings though (or at least the Tamrielic equivalent of a Victorian period).

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The city centre is surrounded by tight-knit terraced suburbs built from the 40s to the 60s to accomodate a massive housing crisis and demographic boom.

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The Town Hall and its plaza are popular meeting spots in the city. In summer it's not uncommon to see people bathing in the fountain itself.

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The Church of the Nerevarine is the oldest building still standing in Westport (older than the Citadel). It was specifically built in a lavish yet outlandish style, even by Vvardenfell standards, by an eccentric Hlaalu councilor. HIs name was lost to the sands of time, but his legacy remains intact and well preserved.

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Victory Column marks the middle of the colonial town, with the Cathedral of Zenithar to the right of the picture.

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The city might be remote, but there is an efficient bus network linking the city together. It all converges at the train station in the middle of town.

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Trains go back and forth across the island. Only one line remains open to passenger traffic but there are several freight only branches.

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Westport is one of the only major cities more readily available by plane. Flights to Wellsborough only take an hour, and flights to Glenvale take under two hours.

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The airport is still criticized for a lack of security groundside, and it is not uncommon to find your car missing its wheels! Hardly reassuring...

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Guess the ferry's safer after all...

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View of Westport sprawling across the land.

That's it for now! I hope you enjoy this new locale, I am going to focus on this area though I will feature Glenvale again fairly soon.

See you soon :D

Linoa06

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Hiya everyone! Somehow the mayor managed to survive elections and remain major, and that may have to do with...a new metro line!

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Today we're going to the Eastern areas of Glenvale - the towns of Baxford, Brook Hill, and Canal City. You've probably never heard of them because I've never featured them yet - but there's a LOT of people there, and some of the loveliest areas in town.

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For instance, take Canal City. Its name is derived from the canals that crisscross what used to be an industrial area that was dismantled starting in the 70s. The canals were essentially a massive port which became obsolete when the Port of Glenvale opened with its giant industrial wards. 

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The area gentrified, and warehouses were replaced by condos and lovely little shops and even office space...but also low-wealth housing projects. All surrounded by pre-existing suburbia.

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Today Canal City boasts one of Glenvale's highest land values. In fact, there are motions in City Hall to expand on the canal system to connect with more parts of town. That is, with a lot of locks, as Glenvale is definitely not all flat land.

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Today, however, canals are contained to the neighborhood - but far more efficient and modern mass transit now links Canal City to the CBD.

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Gone is the slow 6 to Brook Hill - the future of commuting for Eastern Glenvale is on rails! ..okay maybe not high speed rails, as this train is actually coming from the nearby depot and will soon run a service on the East Coast Main Line.

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The new metro line - dubbed Line B - begins in Brook Hill, about 5 km from the CBD. A shuttle bus goes to the nearby Glenvale Regional Airport - but we'll talk about airports in a different entry. Trains here are bound for Convention Center at least until the next expansion - so let's follow the line!

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The route is operated by ten Lint 41 double units, all painted in Chirper's color scheme. Why so? Well, Chirper Inc. actually funded about thirty percent of the line's construction. Unlike the first metro line, these trains are not fully driverless at all. The major stated that the benefits of automation were not worth the loss of potential job creation. Not everyone agrees.

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The tracks weave around housing projects and runs parallel to the A45 road (which, as with all A roads, is a federal highway). This highway was refurbished a few years ago, and this interchange links with the main avenue leading to the Regional Airport.

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The next station is Canal City - Nakamura St. That station was built in Akaviri style, but it's actually a relatively small station serving the upper parts of Canal City - mostly poorer housing districts.

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Just one minute later, metro trains pull into Canal City - Woodley Street. This is the bigger station serving Canal City and is also built in Akaviri style. The upper level of the station houses the operation center for Line B, as the tracks leading to the depot branch out just east of the station.

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Mind the gap! A train pulls into Woodley Street station during morning rush hour. The station acts as a bus hub, and passengers are funnelled from local buses into the metro system from here. Bus and metro tickets are separate but regular commuters can use their MetroCard across the entirety of the bus and metro network, and even city taxis!

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The train leaves the station, then turns southwards to cross the A45 roadway.

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The roadway is one of the most modern roadways in Glenvale, though so far it only stretches as far as Meadowfair. Later it is slated to meet up with the freeways - but local groups oppose any destruction caused by building the roadway further into town.

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Parallel to the A45 city officials laid out a cycle path, so that cyclists can safely go straight from their homes into the suburbs into the outer downtown area.

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The next station is North Baxford, about 7 minutes away from Brook Hill. It is designed in the same style as the terminus at Brook Hill, though with more shops around. Baxford is still a very suburban area though.

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The train line weaves westwards again, towards downtown, and passes the Baxford University Hospital.

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Finally the route reaches the outer parts of the downtown core. Thirteen minutes in, and you're already at Westbrook Square station, on the outer edge of Meadowfair.

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This station is, in fact, the first elevated station we call at - and also the shortest. It just about accommodates the typical 2-unit (4-car) set!

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From now on, the line enters the city itself - on elevated rails! 

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The line races along Downey Avenue, but not quite. The line was built in the middle of the block column to minimize disruptions to the businesses and buildings along the busy avenue. In fact there was very little demolition as the viaduct is built on an earlier landscaped slope that was mostly not built up anyway. The trains are barely visible from Downey Avenue or the adjacent parallel street.

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Sixteen minutes in the trip and we arrive at Meadowfair station, though it technically is actually located on the border with the Orchard Park district. 

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The tracks then squeeze between two buildings on either side of the station, before turning at a 45 degree angle over Downey Avenue (in the background).

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The tracks need to keep parallel to the avenue but on the other side of it to cross the M1 freeway artery.

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Finally the line crosses over the freeway. The road is already sunken quite deep (about 15 meters) but the train tracks need to be even higher to reach the next elevated station.

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Finally, twenty minutes into the trip, the train stops in the first CBD station, Bloomdew Circle. The station name itself is an artefact of road construction that was eventually shelved, as the intersection was initially slated to become a roundabout. That did not happen. Most elevated stations in the CBD are built to the same design, with a station and small parking lot and elevator AND stairs access to the platforms.

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Just like in Meadowfair, the train line runs behind the buildings along the avenue, once again hidden from view - it also helps mitigate noise pollution, or so the city council claims. 

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Finally, we reach Union Station and the city bus terminal at Union Square / Concord Plaza. This is also where we meet up with Metro Line A, and a new exit to the underground station was built in the lobby of the elevated stop. It also helps transfers to the bus terminal or mainline station as people can transfer through underground passageways and the underground station lobby instead of crossing the busy road.

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The area of Concord Square itself was reduced by a third to make way for the station building.

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Initially, that station was supposed to be the terminus for Line B - but a last-minute change prompted more construction westwards, especially as the land ahead is all parking spaces or plazas.

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Instead the tracks carry on downwards, slowly at first over the road, then slightly steeper...

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Finally, past the road the line dives down entirely underground - though just below street level. In the tunnel, a small but steep spur line connects Metro Line B to Metro Line A, which runs parallel to it but at a greater depth (about 4 m lower) on the other side of the avenue.

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Metro Line B eventually emerges at its current terminus : Convention Center station. It is a sunken station, though not entirely underground, and is also a transfer point for Metro Line A. 

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The station is only sunken and not completely underground because the Line A tracks, after exiting their own underground station, cross the Line B tracks just a few meters below them. It would have been far too costly and difficult to rebuild the entire area, as opposed to building this sunken station.

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In time, there are plans to stretch the B line underground towards Burbank and the South Beach area, though for now the tracks and tunnel end here.

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And so trains reverse here and go all the way back to Brook Hill.

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With this new subway line, Glenvale and its urban area are better connected, though at the minor cost of a 1 percent rise in commercial and industrial taxes. At least taxpayers aren't moaning as much this time.

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Here's an updated bus and subway map for downtown Glenvale. Line B is shown from Westbrook Square to Convention Center - the suburban areas of Brook Hill, Canal CIty and Baxford are still not shown on the main bus map.

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However, here's the full subway network map, showing every station on the network along with two planned expansions, such as Line B extending to Burbank and the Line A city loop - though the city loop is not even funded yet, so very unlikely to meet the deadline at all. Interestingly there is no Chirpy logo on the map, though there is a free wifi service on the entire network to everyone with a Chirper handle! #CoolOrWhat?

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And finally, a stylised map of the Glenvale metro area - it's actually not very developed, maybe 2.000.000 inhabitants max, but there you go!

That's it for today! I'm going to take a break from Glenvale so next entry we're going in the Euro/Dunmer part of Cathnoquey, to visit a completely new town! Thanks for reading and I'm looking forward to your feedback! :D

 

 

Linoa06

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Hiya everyone! Today I got to set up different commercial specialisations around Glenvale, so let's dive in our shiny (almost) brand new districts!

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The Marigold Tower is finally lit up! In the background, a new tower was erected : the Grand Hotel tower. Tourists can stay here if they have the coin...

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Let's go on the other side of the Burbank Bridge today. The South Beach waterfront area is full of hotels, with a lovely view on the beach and the sea.

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The entire area is known for its vibrant nightlife, complete with midnight basketball games! However it's mostly full of tourists, who enjoy the smooth sandy beach.

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One of the best known nightclubs in the city is the Celsius - in fact they're a chain of nightclubs spread across the entire nation. Every VIP in the state has been there at least ten times, and the fashionable TMZEEE tabloid has set up its HQ just next door! 

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The waterfront was recently redeveloped, too. A new ferry terminal was built in South Beach to replace the old terminal, which was far too remote.

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The beach was recently cleaned up and also redeveloped. For instance, a cycle path was built on the beach itself, as well as a little embankment to prevent flooding during storms and high tides. From the gleaming city to the beach in just two minutes - who could say no to that?

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The waterfront isn't the only place where you can have fun at night. The CBD has its fair share of entertainment going on, too!

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Restaurants, nightclubs, pubs, neko cafes and more await you in the streets of downtown Glenvale. 

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Admittedly, not everyone buys into the city nightlife experience. For some people, a good evening out is spent with friends, fishing and watching the city from afar.

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For others, though, the Marigold Tower is like a beacon of fun and wealth in an increasingly cluttered landscape.

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Taller towers are springing up across the city. However it is unfair to say the Greens are all about consumerism : the building code has been tightened to be more environmentally friendly, and many of these hotels have solar panels to fight their carbon footprint. Isn't Glenvale busy? Most hotel rooms are soundproofed, though, and what a view they offer!

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It only really gets quieter far into the night, as partygoers wait for a night bus to take them home. It's a great thing buses run 24/7 in Glenvale - but many remember a time where they stopped running at 7pm.

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The nightclub fever is mostly limited to the southern part of the city center. In other parts of the CBD, nights are a lot quieter, much to the relief of local residents.

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As Glenvale becomes more of a touristic destination, the city council has decided to completely overhaul Concord Square, with basins on two sides. Also note the new bus lanes.

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This overhaul did come with extra billboards and advertising, though..

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The City Hall plaza was also rebuilt and now features a forest of metal cubes, meant to represent the transition between modern men and nature.. or maybe a wishful Minecraft update.

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More billboards, more hotels..Somebody who lived here ten years ago would probably have trouble recognising the area today!

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The sun comes up over residental areas of Glenvale. This is Edenvale, with Willow Glen in the background.

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Partygoers are going to sleep, while other residents of Edenvale wake up, prep the kids for school, get ready for work...

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It almost feels like two opposite worlds clashing yet cohabiting together.

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The CBD is not the only area of town with higher density buildings though. 

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Willow Glen in particular is home to many housing projects and business parks.

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While these two worlds seem diametrically opposed, they share the same transport network - Edenvale is really maybe 15 minutes away from the city centre. Except during rush hour.

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Or you could take the metro! Most higher-density areas are linked by subway, and there is a new line in the works!

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The metro station at Willow Glen is linked with the Willow Glen Bus Hub, where many long-distance and city buses call at.

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By metro, it takes 20 minutes to go from Willow Glen into town; by bus, it takes half an hour. Many buses act as feeders, though, rather than linking the CBD to the suburbs directly.

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No matter how you do it, it means you can enjoy an evening out in the city centre after work before coming home. The public transport network is very efficient.

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Finally, let's look at a new development in the outlying islands! A new airport was opened! Glenvale/Kingscote Airport (GKA) is meant to replace the older airport. With eight gates and two runways, the airport is eventually slated to replace the nearby South Kingscote Airport, which will need to close as the costs of refurbishing it are, in fact, bigger than those of just building a new airport with modern amenities.

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However it's probably not a perfect solution : it is not yet opened for business, and so far there is no public transport link to it, short of taxis. The runways are also shorter (1300 meters), which prevents bigger planes from landing in normal conditions. In time, though, it is expected to handle smaller regional passenger planes. There's also the issue of pollution, which the Greens in power have yet to address...

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The older airport will probably focus more on cargo with the regional airplanes gone, but it will also handle the international traffic, and at such is undergoing renovations too. 

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With the new GKA airport acting as a hub to all of the regional airlines and the older GCA airport handling cargo and international traffic, Glenvale might well become an air transport hub in short order, especially if the current hub at Albany closes.

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How far we've gone! A moribund manufacture-heavy city slowly turns into a thriving financial city and touristic hub and gains 100.000 inhabitants over 15 years. For the Green major, though, things don't look so easy. Some voters think she's acted contrary to the values her party stands for in the name of progress and glory, what with promoting air transport, tourism and unchecked consumerism. She's becoming popular again but the Greens are disowning her. What if she truly was the... life of the party?

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That's all for today! Next time we're building an entire new subway line - or more accurately an overground metro line!

Thanks for reading and see you next time! Do feel free to leave some feedback!

Linoa06

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Hiya, and welcome back to Glenvale!

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Dawn is breaking upon Glenvale, but for the city council, this year will be very busy. 

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The City Council has led major efforts to clean up parks across town after it was revealed every single one was constantly littered. Flytipping is now a jailable offence.

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The Haaler River flows across Glenvale. It goes south, then back north on the other side of the Glenvale Bay, and is a major river in Kingscote.

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As for Burbank Bridge, it's over fifty years old by now - well beyond its lifespan. It needs to be rebuilt, and so is being disassembled, bit by bit. 

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The project is controversial. In the short term, it involves the destruction of an entire housing estate, not to mention the severing of a major road link. In the long term, there are concerns about a rise in the local council and city taxes. Finally, environmentalists claim the project will have a negative impact on the environment - ironically the Green party is in power, and pushing for construction of the new bridge.

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The reconstruction of the Burbank Bridge also involves the construction of a dam. It should generate enough electricity to shut down one nuclear reactor. The dam will also help redefining the banks of the river, including massive land claims downstream and the creation and landscaping of a small lake in the middle of town.

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Here's the dam being built...

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The dam means water levels will rise by about 9 meters. Some neighbourhoods, especially near Forest Hills, need to be flooded, causing more people to require rehoming.

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The one bridge still operational has to cope with twice as much traffic as usual, and a single accident can block the entirety of traffic going in one direction - such as here, where the southbound lanes are all but empty when they should already be jammed. 

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At the end of the year, both the dam and new Burbank Bridge are finally complete.

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The new bridge has 40% more capacity than the old one, and the dam also provides an extra roadway between north and south Glenvale.

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However millions were lost when a wind farm on the south bank of the river was partially submerged after a storm. To political commentators, this picture shows the irony of a Green Party drowning out its own policies in a bid to redevelop the city. Other see the effects of Green Party policies on itself.

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The fact is, the creation of the dam ruined the City Beach, and because of budget overruns residents were left with a muddy waterfront. The approval ratings are at their lowest, and the major struggles with constant criticism.

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The improved transit times between the north and south sides of Glenvale can barely offset the major's terrible rating.

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This is especially true amongst the 1200 people that have to be rehomed after their housing estate needed to be destroyed to make way for the new bridge, or those whose homes were flooded.

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Maybe another project can help with the major's disastrous tenure. Do you see it - that big tower in the background.

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The other big project of the year is a massive redevelopment of the Stark Tower complex. For years, Glenvale had little in the way of a skyline. Of course, buildings like the Stark Tower were known landmarks, but they were barely visible even from Rochdale, let alone the rest of the area. Glenvale needs something iconic - something that would thrust it to world city status.

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The old plaza was destroyed. Along with undeveloped land, a new tower was built : thus, the Marigold Tower was created. The name itself was chosen to resemble another famous tower in Tamriel, the Imperial City Whitegold Tower.

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Amazing artwork of the Whitegold Tower in the Imperial City in the early decades of the Fifth Era, about 80-100 years ago. This artwork was meant to be the inspiration behind the new picture, but the final project was deeply modified. (Picture by Lelek1980, not myself)

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This is what the Marigold Tower finally ended up looking like. There's a massive restaurant and a few condos on top! While it looks very different from the Whitegold Tower, it is the tallest building in Glenvale - and the five tallest in all of Cathnoquey.

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The plaza has been entirely rebuilt, too, in order to meet up with the Concord Plaza and form one single landscaped area. It does seem to work.

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Predictably, everyone is moaning. Too expensive, too ugly, too ambitious : the city council is spending money on frivolities while unemployment is on the rise again.

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Yet the new tower unmistakably redefines the cityscape, and Glenvale was ranked 7th out of 100 in the authoritative Tamrielic Sights to See classment, published yearly in the Imperial Times magazine. A boost for the economy and for tourism.

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Same view a few hours later. From the right of the picture to the left : the twin Commerce Towers, the City Hall / Civic Center tower, the Marigold Tower, the Stark Tower, the Cookie Inc. Tower. In the bottom right, the Chirper Inc HQ can be seen.

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View of the city at night. The Marigold Tower will soon be completed and lit up too.

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The Briar Lodge lighthouse and the new Marigold Tower in the background.

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The toll gate on the M1 motorway has been completed! 

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This seems to be a success, and now the city council wants to build more across town - but will the opposition let them?

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Meanwhile the State of Kingscote has decided to split its legislative and executive branches. While its executive will stay in Albany, the State Congress has been moved to a new building in Glenvale. For the state government, this is meant to reduce corruption in the capital Albany, as well as to promote Glenvale across the nation - and all of Tamriel.

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Yet for some people in Glenvale, life hasn't really gotten easier. The Bluerise Tower might have been replaced by a zoo but what good is it if the poorest classes can't afford to visit it?

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The Library Tower now stands as the second-tallest building in Glenvale, but what is it, if not a symbol of capitalism? Many in the city feel betrayed by a Green Party they thought would change things for the better, but who have only clumsily carried out a policy of massive consumerism.

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Though many would also disagree, and point out the major is inexperienced yet traffic and environmental issues in the city have improved. And indeed, despite unemployment rising though by just 1% against a national average of 3%, median income has also increased throughout the city and many city services are now either free to the poorest through heavy subsidies, mostly from trade taxes.

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In the 3rd year of the major's first mandate, things finally begin to look bright. As soon as unemployment falls again, the major's ratings should go right back up. Well, hopefully. Election's in two years now.

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And as part of the celebrations for the city's 160th anniversary, a new ATC tower was built for Glenvale Airport, which is slated to undergo major reconstruction in the coming years.

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Manufacture in Glenvale is all but gone, but it is being replaced by an economy based on tourism, services and finances. It's been hard work for many years, but it seems that it's finally paying off for the inhabitants as a whole - even if it ruins some people's political careers.

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People may moan and decisions may be clumsily made, but there's some hope really. Hope that Glenvale becomes one of the nation's biggest cities and one known the world over to boot. Dawn has broken, hail the new day.

Hope you liked this entry, please lease some feedback and see you next time!

 

 

 

 

Linoa06

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Heya, and welcome to this first After Dark update for Glenvale. I was quite pleased to see the city has survived the many updates that followed :P so let's embark on a neon tour of our city!

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Ah, Coal Hill High... This school was rated best high school in Kingscote for 5E131. The Green Party, which won the council election eventually, held its victory conference here.

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The school campus is also praised. It was built both as a campus for the schools around it and as a park for Glenvale residents of Lakeview to enjoy.

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But today, the star of the show is elsewhere.

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Today, we're not going to explore Glenvale by day. 

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Instead, we're going to wait until night time. It is 8.30pm, and the city has just lit up.

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One after the other neon street lights pop up across town, drawing orange lines across the darkness. Buildings light up, and traffic becomes scarcer as everyone has commuted home.

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A SKRC train to Albany carries late commuters back home. Commuter trains run until 10.30 pm. The city centre does feel quieter at night, with everyone gone back home.

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Servers at Chirper HQ are most buzzing in the evening, when most people unwind in their homes and reshare chirps and other social media bits for the world to see.

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The Stark Tower dutifully watches over the city as it slowly falls asleep. But do cities truly ever sleep?

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The bus drivers in Glenvale would surely disagree. For them, the night shift begins. Eight night bus lines criss-cross the city, picking up late-night commuters and party-goers alike.

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In the summer months, evenings are also when it is most comfortable to come out for a drink or a visit to the theatre. Concord Plaza is a great place to meet up before shuffling on a shuttle bus to the nightclubs.

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Many of the taller buildings remain all lit up at night, though they are exceptions. The Concord Tower, to the left of the picture, shines over the plaza like a beacon. Money never sleeps, after all, and even though most bankers have gone back to their cosy estates, their servers remain up, scanning the markets and waiting for the next day. However, the red Cookie Inc. Tower remains dark at night to save energy. As for the Bluerise Tower, in the background, well...its owners have gone bankrupt, and the tower is due for demolition.

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A line 3B bus driver enjoys the light traffic on Federal Avenue. During the day, it is almost entirely jammed. At night, the police has to go to great lengths to prevent illegal drag races on the perfectly straight road. 

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But there are only so many police officers, and the night is the perfect cover for unsavoury people of all backgrounds to indulge in crime. 

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 This does not worry the passengers on the SS Titus II. Tomorrow, they'll be at sea, even further south, far away from the cares of the world.

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Night is also a great time for shipping. With roads completely emptied of commuters, trucks can deliver goods quicker than during the day. It does get lonely, though, doesn't it?

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Even Downey Avenue, which strikes diagonally across the otherwise straight grid of the industrial wards, is quiet and peaceful at this time of night...

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Burbank Bridge flies over the Briar Lodge neighbourhood. Traffic is very light on the bridge, mostly because most people who use it live in Glenvale or nearby anyway.

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Soon, the bridge will be destroyed and rebuilt with a much more efficient design - and, it is feared, toll gates.

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The subway runs until 1am. Even late at night, there are still a fair deal of people around the train station.

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Most districts become quiet at night. Not Meadowfair. The university district buzzes with activity at night. Nightclubs are open and usually packed, and so are cabarets, cinema, restaurants and theatres. The district feels alive, with traffic rushing by, taxis and limos stopping. Bathed in neon lights, people are dancing, laughing, singing, some of them more than a little tipsy.

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Every night, there is a long procession of cars exiting the M102 spur motorway at a tiny exit in Southhill. The southernmost part of the highway is usually closed at night because of resident complaints about trucks taking shortcuts in suburban, residential areas on their way to the industrial wards.

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Doesn't stop some trucks from trying anyway. The Greens have won the election and are planning to put tolls to restrict access to the CBD, further alarming some residents at the possibility of increased traffic in their neighbourhoods.

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Perhaps the Greens should try to get over their opposition to nuclear power first. A law passed just a few weeks after their accession to City Hall and saw nuclear power plants shut, leading to rolling blackouts at night when solar power plants do not function. Needless to say, it only took two days to overturn the law. Political media described the events as the Green Electricity Bill Fiasco, and the opposition jumped on the opportunity to point out their inexperience in office.

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On the outskirts of the city, the last train of the day rolls along the tracks. It leaves Glenvale at 11.58pm and is bound for Amesbury Central, calling at Albany and Wesmoor.

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If you want to go into Glenvale later, roads are the only way. A toll gate is being built at the entrance of Glenvale on the M1. The price is only 0.75 cent (about 3 Septims) though, which is actually quite affordable yet will help in highway maintenance.

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The CityPass also allows drivers to pass the gate without stopping at all! They just reduce their speed and their electronic units automatically pay for them. However, the higher price of CityPass units means it is mostly useful for regular commuters in and out of Glenvale.

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In the background, one of the city's two nuclear power plants glow, but parks remain dark green patches of wild land within the concrete fabric of city life. 

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Aperture Park and the Scientific Enrichment Center are also popular late-night venues. The Center holds its famous Late Night Science events on weekends and exhibits some of its technology then, such as the Great Orrery, which makes use of the stars in the sky. Some people take advantage of the lower attendance in the evenings, much to the delight of local restaurants that can stay open longer.

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There are several other dark patches of land in the CBD - most of it awaiting development. The CO tower (formerly the Mithril Tower before its reconstruction) looks slightly out of place, doesn't it? It's all lit blue and red, as opposed to the more typical yellow and orange glow of nearby buildings and streets.

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Then again, Glenvale does have quite a few atypical buildings which define its skyline, however low-rise it really is. The Stark Tower is only 50 floors high, after all - 220 meters only!

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The cranes in the harbor might not be as high, but they do also define the skyline of southern Glenvale and they are the first sight any ship coming into port might see.

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The old City Hall, refurbished as the Kingscote Historical Museum, is undergoing renovations too - soon it will be lit up brightly red in the skies of Cathnoquey.

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A view from above reveals the grid pattern of the CBD, with the major streets lit orange, and just how much land is about to be built-up.

 

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The sun finally rises, and the city comes back to life as partygoers return to their homes. A new day awaits!

And now for more maps!

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This is an updated map of the SKRC Commuter system. The terrain around Glenvale, formerly very schematic, has been redrawn more accurately in response to travellers' confusion.

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Night network! :D 15 min headway is really for "peak time" though, in effect it's more like 20-30 minutes.

This is it, hope you enjoyed this update and night-time Glenvale! Hope to see you next time :D

Linoa06

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Heya everyone!

This year, Glenvale ties for fastest growth with Amesbury. With local elections ahead, let's take a quick look at the city, shall we?

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An Intercity train races across town, headed for the Capitol. The sun shines, general aviation buzzes overhead, it's a warm spring day... It is a normal day in Glenvale.

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Beyond the University that's also opening this year, the city's ambitions are towards better park-and-ride facilities and increasing frequency on some of the heaviest bus lines.

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But do the elites really care? The subway is all nice and good, but trams would have been cheaper, and taxes wouldn't have risen so sharply. 12% council tax rate city-wide! 

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Yet life carries on, and amidst nuclear fears the very first Nuclear Vault in Kingscote was opened by Fault-Tec in the heart of Glenvale - as an exhibit, they say.

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Meanwhile, the seas are rising, and nobody seems to care. Does anybody ever care? They should - local elections are looming.

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Probably not for the passengers of the luxurious cruise ship SS Galaxy, who sail the southern Kingscote seas, and delight at every sight.

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South, endless seas. North...endless concrete.

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You'd think a city so proud of its environment would do something about climate change. You'd wish they had proper guidelines when the volcanos the city straddles awaken once again.

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The drought might have come and gone across the state, but the government is more intent on building yet more roads. Do you feel it? There's some sweet unrest in Glenvale, ushered in cafes, in meetings.

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At the Edenvale District Hall, local council members are worried about the change. Their party, the Progressive Party of Cathnoquey, is slowing down. Once the party of change, now that of complacency. They took the Federals by surprise in Glenvale, but they only won by a margin, mostly thanks to the Aldmeri Standoff. 

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And with minor parties gaining more and more momentum, the elites running Glenvale know their time is at an end. Economic recovery, yes, but when? For the manufactories that kept closing, it looked more like disaster than anything, fueling the hatred of the National Party; for environmentalists, Green was the new red.

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And if Glenvale was undergoing recovery, then were did the money go? It can't have possibly all gone into the new subway and freeway. Hospitals such as the Falsworth Hospital are all at capacity, with little federal relief.

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And you can feed the populace Quiddich matches all you want, even have the Glenvale Gliders come out on top of the Quiddich Premier League if you like, it can't smother out completely the worries of an entire people.

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When does it all break down? Latest polls reported by the Glenvale Herald put the Greens on top of both county and local elections, with a 20% lead on the PPC.

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Perhaps it would prove to be a victory for commuters. The Greens have pledged better transportation and construction of bike and bus lanes, in due time. Some parts of town are awfully jammed, and bikes would probably quicken commuting times for a lot of Glenvale residents.

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Not to mention that some of the infrastructure is ageing, and shows signs of weaknesses. They will have to be replaced in time - for the main parties, shutting down the major bridges in town would amount to political suicide.

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But what if it's what the people want? Glenvale relies on its freeway network more than other cities in the state, after all. Collapsing bridges wouldn't be good for business.

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And if the Greens won't necessarily have it easy, they're also drawing a lot more attention than four years ago.

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Those are shaky days ahead for the political elite of Glenvale and its surrounding towns. In the streets, many want to believe things will get better. 

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Now, even some high-profile businesses endorse the Greens openly - including Chirper, Inc. The PPC has trouble adjusting to this scenario, so they lowered transport fares, hoping to ease up the pressure.

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Then again, perhaps the only solution for the PPC is to take a lift down from their patios and offices and expensive downtown flats - and into the streets and lives of ordinary residents.

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With local Greens leader Jane Haaleri planning to shut down a nuclear plant and set up toll booths and a "congestion zone" in the heart of the city, though, both the PPC and Liberals can hope to score political points.

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Meanwhile, the Whiterun-born Liberals leader, a charismatic Nord called Antony Bittneld, has decided to regain Glenvale for his party and is about to hold his presidential bid in the city Convention Center - well ahead of his rivals - in order to swing the election his way.

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Only two months to the local election, and the Liberals have gained massive ground - but they're still trailing the Greens, whose leader has been described as "possibly the first Dunmer to win City Hall". In fact, if she wins, Glenvale would become the biggest city in the nation headed by a Dunmer.

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Even in this day and age, Cathnoquey still has several issues regarding race. The Aldmer and people of Akaviri descent (the Tang Mo and Ka-Po-Tun, who are ironically closer to humanity than elves are) are the usual suspects because of geopolitical tensions. Dark Elves and the beastkin also face undue racial discrimination despite many laws written to tackle the issue. A Dunmer at the head of one of the country's biggest cities would be a major victory for civil rights activists.

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Will the Greens vision of a tram and bike friendly city - and of a progressive one - prevail, or will the Liberals appeal to "common sense" and strong economic growth through less taxes on businesses and residents alike? And will the incumbent Progressives manage to survive the death blow that's coming to them, in Glenvale and nation-wide?

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The Nationals are out after their far-right movement was found guilty of burning down the homes of local Khajiit and Bosmer businessmen - banned from all state elections for six years. Too much freedom of speech kills freedom of speech, Judge Carson said as he made his way out of the Court of Commons amidst both praise and outcry from other activists.

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And then there is the local oddball - this election sees Mai'q the Liar, son of Mai'q the Liar, grandson of Mai'q the Liar (and so on), self-proclaimed "most honest politician" in Glenvale, who campaigns not as himself but as his Shiba Inu dog...

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Yet, on the sandy shores of Glenvale, many people care little about politics and just try to catch the last warm rays of the year. Don't they know the results of the election - the future of their city - rest on their shoulders?

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Nothing is to be taken for granted in Glenvale. The wind blows, the hills overlook the city, traffic rushes along the narrow streets in the final week to the election...It's a normal day in Glenvale to fall for anything.

 

That's it for today, thanks for reading! Please leave feedback as always, and see you next time! =)