Welcome to my first city journal. In this series I'll be sharing my progress as I colonize and develop from scratch a small island based off the real world terrain of Cyprus.
I'm a huge SC4 fan. I've played the game relatively regularly since its release, but I've never shared any of my cities with anyone. I'm hoping to gain a lot of interest with this project.
I follow a very specific procedure and style when building. I like realism, not only in the "finished" look and feel of a developed area (of course, no city is ever "finished"), but also in the method of development itself. I never zone medium or high density zones on open land, for instance, but rather always over top of old developments that are well surrounded by newer suburbs. I also keep my cheat usage to an absolute minimum (I do use God Mode to plant a lot of trees), and I take enough time getting personally involved in neighborhoods to actually name all my streets.
Because of the amount of time I like to spend perfecting my neighborhoods, I figured an island would make a good project. I can easily make use of the entirety of the region, every town will have a neighbor, and I'll still have plenty of land to play with. So, meet the fictional island of Cyprikuyucak:
Sticking with the general Cyprus theme, I'm also using Turkish and Greek names for the cities (though for road names I'll stick to my native English for ease).
One thing that's always irritated me about SC4 (it irks my itch for realism) is how cities can develop in isolation. You can get a pretty decent sized city going relatively quickly, with no signs of surrounding civilization for miles. How do the sims colonize an isolated area with no road leading to it? Thus I always begin a new region with a basic road network connecting the region to the "outside world." In this case, building on an island, I can't do that. So one of my first priorities will be getting a sea port and/or airport as soon as possible, even if it's just a single landing strip or ferry route.
What I have done, however, is cover the island in a basic road network to lay out some of the areas where I would like to start building, and to have all my starter towns connected to each other. The network completes a full circuit around the island, with the exception of the peninsula to the northeast, which will be a more isolated area.
If you look up Cyprus on Google Maps, you'll notice that I've roughly followed the major highway system that actually exists there (I've used two-lane roads, not highways). This is just a guide to get me started. Beyond this point everything will be my own creation.
I want to begin with roughly half a dozen small towns scattered around the island, and develop the interior with loads of farmland. Much of the mountainous area will be a national park/wildlife reserve. My plan is then to develop the 5 or 6 starter towns into large cities, while scattering the suburbs and farmland with smaller towns over time.
Last but not least, if anyone has any ideas or suggestions for this project, I would love to hear them! I'd really like to gather a bit of a following for this region, and if collaboration will achieve that I look forward to reading your suggestions.
I'll be doing my best to post updates every weekend, as time allows (my work schedule is currently kind of all over the place, not to mention I'm a newly wed!). So stay tuned!