The Jade Bight 28
Industrial & Financial Districts
SPOIILER ALERT !!
Don’t start reading this entry unless you have some time to spare!!
This week, I have decided to wrap up our tour of Nuenburg. I was planning to split the content into two more installments – but I have been overtaken by the “unforeseen consequences” – as they say in the “Weltpolitik” circles. I made the mistake of beginning another city before finishing the CJ entries on this one – and my mind has become completely immersed in the new project. Ain’t that they way it always is? Man is, indeed, a fickle creature!
Soooo – this is going to be a large entry – jammed full of pictures for you to look at.
A REALLY LARGE entry !!
We move from “Beautiful Downtown Nuenburg to the low-rent and industrial neighborhoods in the southeast corner of the city.
Again – I will dispense with mentioning the goals and guidelines I had in mind while building the city. If you really want to know the “nuts and bolts” of the thing, you can look back at entry “Nuenburg #02” for the details. It might be of interest if you’re curious to see how faithful I’ve been to the original concepts.
INDUSTRIAL ZONE OVERVIEW
Due to the severe ID (dirty industry) imbalance I caused in “Emden” – it was my intention to correct that situation by not building any industry at all and simply relying upon commercial interests to attract a much larger population (which would correct the imbalance in the ID demand). Unfortunately, it quickly became apparent that I would not be able to grow “McMansions” for my wealthy citizens without some industry. Consequently, I decided to invest in IHT (high tech) to supply the needed boost to my high wealth occupants. You might say industry was an afterthought – so it was not very large, nor well thought out. (You gotta do what you gotta do!)
TWO TRANSITIONS IN PROGRESS
Here are several smaller views that show my attempts to use landscape to separate the industrial zones from the residential areas. The separation was not as wide as I would have liked, but then, I hadn’t actually planned the industry in the first place! (A mistake I will not make again.) As the city growth progressed -- I also realized I was going to need a much larger population to offset that RCI imbalance. The only solution seemed to be to zone for large tenement type buildings with low wealth residents. The fringe of the industrial zone seemed the appropriate place for them
As the city population grew beyond 100k, it also became apparent that the crime rates were not stable, nor were they completely under control. Consequently, I took the unusual step of building a city jail. This also took up more of the scant land resources because it required security fencing and a bit of distance from any residential areas. I also decided it would be proper to make the only access to the Jail through it’s own police precinct station. “Viola” !! The “Combined Confinement Facility – CCF -- was born!! (Better known to the inmates as “The Slammer”.)
INDUSTRIAL RAIL SIDING
Here we have a small rail siding inside the industrial zone. It does not include a freight station, so the arrangement was purely for the eye-candy effect. The industrial zone was already small, so I chose not to go with the traditional freight station and railyard – instead improvising a smaller version. Unfortunately, the fact that the PEG “Whistle Stop” lot beside my steam locomotives functions as a small passenger station kind of slipped right by me. On the “up-side”, it does help handle the passenger burden (which is considerable) – but it does look a bit odd to see “The Super Chief” occasionally unload ten passenger cars in an industrial zone.
This is the usual array of city infrastructure – trash disposal, water pumping station, and the water treatment plant. By virtue of their tasks, these facilities have always been lotted to take up as little space as possible and usually with a minimum of detail. I figured since they were fundamental to the working of the city, the lots should also be portrayed with as much detail as possible, without becoming gargantuan in size. I’ve laid them out in as compact an arrangement as possible, but “dressed” them out with some filler lots.
GATEWAY TO INDUSTRY
This shot is looking south -- from the edge of the commercial district – into the industrial zone. Since high tech industry had done so much for the growth of the city, they thought it only proper to build a suitable entrance to the industrial neighborhood. Just imagine the “Captains of Industry” leaving their downtown boardrooms. Their limousines proceed down the wide avenue of the “Hoch Strasse and emerge from between the tall buildings to be greeted by a pleasant, tree-lined space with a roundabout holding a statue of rampaging bulls (denoting a “bull market” on Wall Street). And towering over it all, are the imposing monoliths of “The Lighthouses Of Commerce”. Kinda makes a guy feel like a “Master of the Universe” – dunnit?
I was trying to keep some distance between industry, commercial, and residential – but space was at a premium – and I was also pushing for as large a population as could reasonably be accommodated. We see here luxury hotels (for those Captains Of Industry), commercial buildings, cultural buildings, and a serious block of low wealth housing for the “worker ants”. Proceeding north past the movie studio is a tree-lined stretch of “The Wasserturm Strasse” leading directly to the mass of corporate office blocks on the north edge of town.
TALIN CENTER & THE MANDARIN ORIENTAL
Some of you may have already noticed – these are among my favorite buildings. Some will decry their repeated use as boring, redundant, or simply “repetitive”. I, too, like to find new and unusual buildings for my cities, but such attractive lots as these deserve to be used – often and with “style”. Please note the details – unusual road arrangements, park pathways, parking, and especially the landscape. I’ve tried to create tranquil spots with sun, trees, and space – all the while using the landscape as a barrier between the industrial zone.
THE WASSERTURM TRIANGLE
Here we have an interesting collection of hotels, commercial buildings, and museums. Note the extensive use of landscaping and especially the Paeng park pathways used to tie the whole thing together – end to end, and side to side. The sidewalks worked out very well along the lower row of buildings. It appears “airy” and spacious and the trees provide a sense of tranquility. (I confess, I have had to use all my ingenuity to avoid using complicated diagonal building lots – and still look good. I may have to start using them.) Please note the tree-lined stretch along the Wasserturm Strasse.
DISEASE RESEARCH CENTER
This is yet another of “Matt325’s” fine lots – the Disease Research Center. Behind it you see the movie studio. One would think a lot would look pretty dowdy squeezed between an embankment wall, a railroad, several roads, and a movie studio – but wonders can be worked with a bit of MMP landscaping !!
TONKSO OFFICE PARK
I have been experimenting for a number of weeks with various “office Parks” and the individual buildings that go in them. I was taken with their different arrangements, the vast parking areas, and the layout of the “office park” lots. They were good! But there was something missing. Just plopping down an office park and taking up large amounts of space – possibly arranging some roads around them – just didn’t seem to do “it” – whatever that was. So I kept coming back to them. I finally decided that they appeared too sterile – squatting there on the map – dominating the entire visual space. So I came to the conclusion that they needed to be blended INTO the landscape rather than dominating it. I’ve used Paeng park pathways, Paeng’s pocket plazas, raised embankments, filler parking, and a whole mess of MMP landscape to try and accomplish that. “The Devil is in the details”. I put a lot of time, effort, and thought into “blending”. Let me know what you think
FOLGATE LEASINGS OFFICE PARK
Here’s a small, custom tailored grouping of buildings laid out to fit into a rather small area, but still conveying a sense of space and tranquility. Note the use of the parks and plazas at the north end of the grouping and between them.
CAMDEN HEIGHTS OFFICE COMPLEX
This is the “masterpiece” of the north side corporate office complex experiment. I was working on keeping the space as compact as possible, while using three buildings arranged in such a way as to allow road access. The buildings front on the ramp entrance to the elevated embankment, which is landscaped with park paths, plazas, a convenience store, massive MMP use, and observation points overlooking the lower city area. I think it is very “classy” – and the only “monumental” piece included is the fountain. Elegant – but not grandiose (I hope).
HOLBOURNE HOUSE OFFICE PARK
This one I plopped “as is”. I liked the lawn design in the front and the roundabout with the abstract fountain. I always think of the buildings as looking a bit like the Boyle Street address from the “Boston Legal” TV series. I understand the law offices of Crane, Poole & Schmidt occupy the top two floors of the front building. My only unease with the scene – is that it doesn’t quite “blend” with the landscape. It’s possible that the space looks too much like a giant parking lot with a couple of small buildings. I spent a lot of years in Los Angeles, and I have a dislike for vast parking areas – Joni Mitchell’s song from the “60’s”, no doubt.
GENERAL METALS ENGINEERING
Nuenburg is my 15th City in this region and I had not yet found a place to plop this one. THIS city seemed just about perfect. Some complicated ramp and embankment work to keep the space compact – some park paths – parking – a few pocket plazas – and a mass of MMP landscape. Bingo !! General Metals Engineering also brings a whole mess of high tech jobs and is ideal for placement late in the growth process to wipe out that huge surplus of HT jobs in the RCI graph. One of the biggest problems with using these office buildings and lots is the RCI demand. If you plop too soon in the game, you wipe out the demand and Maxis buildings in other parts of the city will not grow and develop. Again, mixing Maxis lots into the game is crucial to my method of developing a city.
KONG FINANCIAL GROUP
This one is a grouping I have been playing with in each one of my cities. It was the focus of my initial experimentation with office blocks or parks. I kept arranging and rearranging them in different configurations in an attempt to make them look like a cohesive complex. This is about the best I could do. Maybe an “L” shape would have worked better ??
This is a small “pocket” neighborhood kind of isolated by the highway and railroad. It seemed a good place to drop a museum and those Maxis churches. You gotta put them someplace just to get the reward boost! Lots of landscaping dressed them up a bit.
CENTRAL TRANSPORT HUB
I refer to this as the Transport Hub because I have a passenger rail stop and the airport shuttle in a central grouping with parks, hotels, a parking garage, and restaurants. We’ve got the “twin” buildings of the St. Ritzy hotel along with a Lenny’s fast food, a Wendy’s restaurant, and – my favorite – a White Castle. It’s mostly fast food stuff, but if the people in those office parks want “fine” dining, they can always go across town to the Nordstrom Mall. The radio and television stations are also gathered here. Judging by all those buses, the airport shuttle is quite popular. Just as well since the railroads are seriously over-burdened.
This is an excellent view of the Winterton Memorial, the terminus of yet another “visual axes” and central to the entrance of the office park complex..
In addition to the many fine hotels in Nuenburg, we have the Lindo Tower and The Excelsior – both situated just north of the transport hub and ideally placed to service businessmen visiting companies in the office complex.
LANDSCAPE & ELEVATIONS
Here you can see the end of the raised plateau holding the office parks. Getting General Metals placed on the end of the hill was tricky, and building the ramp while not disturbing the rail and road connections was even more so. But the landscape makes all the difference. Note two CSX passenger trains passing one another at the crossing.
I have included a large, city overview – along with several higher-zoom overviews -- that may help you tie all these pictures together and make sense of the layout of the city.
# 43 – City
# 44 – Industrial
# 45 – Wasserturm Strasse District
# 46 – Office Complex – East End
# 47 – Office Complex – West End
Here are a bunch of night shots for you guys
# 48 – Here’s one you don’t see every day.
# 53 – I really like this one.
# 57 – I do like this !
# 62 – This is VERY nice !! Subdued, yet striking.
One of the initial goals of this city was to try out an entirely new style of landscaping for my maps. I spent several days searching for trees and landscape items – several more days testing individual downloads – and a day or so making the occasional tree filler lot to use for mass coverage. Once I was ready, I spent almost an entire day making different types of terrain on a test map and “painting” it with my new materials. These are the results of about a week’s work. Even with all this effort, I’m still having trouble getting my brain to think of terrain as “wide open spaces”. I think I’m doing pretty well with making a variety of terrain – ponds, scree slopes, and the occasional clearing in the woods. But I just can’t seem to bring myself to leave large areas WITHOUT some sort of landscape device. They say that “Nature abhors a vacuum” – perhaps that’s my problem. But I’ll keep working on it. Comments here would especially be appreciated. I’m still experimenting and ANY suggestion would get my attention!!
I noticed – hardly anyone posts pictures of trains rattling through their maps. Nuenburg has its’ share of rail lines and stations, all of which are working beyond their capacity. Consequently, I’ve got oodles and oodles of trains roaring around the map. I got bored looking at the same old generic Maxis trains – and lucky for me – VDK posted a bunch of new trains !! I spent a least one day downloading and testing them – and picked a CSX passenger engine, the Santa Fe Super Chief passenger engine, a CSX freight engine, and some vintage 1950’s passenger cars. You have to be careful with your selections – the darker cars and engines don’t show up well on the map. But here are some pictures for you “train spotters” out there!
# 75 – CSX passenger express to Emden
#76 – CSX passenger about to collide with a log truck !!
# 78 – CSX passenger passing the “sheep in the field”
# 79 – Super Chief causing a traffic jam & vehicle accident
# 80 – Same again
# 83 – CSX passenger express pulling into the Central Hub station
I’m posting a series of regional pictures so you can get an idea of how the growth and development is progressing. As you can see, I do not lay out entire regions before starting development of any given map, though I do have a master plan sketched out with pen and paper. If and when I start a new region, I may try laying it out on paper and then filling in the various maps with the roughed-out land form to get a better idea where things should go.
# 85 – REGION 01
# 86 – REGION 02
# 87 – REGION 03
# 88 – REGION 04
In this map you can see where Nuenburg was under development at the bottom center. You can also see where the neighboring map – Wilhelmshaven – was being used as a test map for new downloads, custom re-lots, and for creating terrain and landscape systems.
# 89 – REGION 05
In this map, you can see Nuenburg fully grown with two maps roughed-in to the west, one map roughed in to the south, and a small map tile to the southeast. Due east of Nuenburg – you’ll notice that the large map tile has completed terra-forming and is now under development as “Wilhelmshaven”. THIS is the project that has drawn my full attention for the last few weeks while I was trying to get the CJ entries done for Nuenburg.
Looking at this region so far, I am not all that pleased. Building the cities, learning new techniques, adding new custom content – is a lot of fun. But the map bothers me. My sense of “space and proportion” is still not satisfied. Nuenburg and Emden, the last two cities built, have grown right up to their boundary limits. It reminds me of a map of Los Angeles – about 100 square miles of dense urban habitat. You could drive through half a dozen cities out there without knowing where one ends and the other begins. I’m still looking for something big enough to provide that sense of space and distance. If I continue this region, I’m going to have to start building smaller to create that feeling of space and distance between the cities. I may have to revise my method a bit. Maybe by covering less "geography" on larger map tiles. Instead of trying to build several large cities in a region -- I may have to build a single large city (covering, perhaps, more than one map tile) with outlaying suburbs and villages. But – I have already gotten fully involved with Wilhelmshaven – so that decision will have to be made later.
This is going to be a major project. I have been testing and developing all sorts of things for this map that I have not used anywhere else. I’m also bringing the lessons I learned from Nuenburg (as well as the other maps in this CJ). We will have the new landscape, many new custom lots for the commercial zones, and some better use of residential lots as I continue to tinker with zoning for specific kinds of “grow lots”. In addition to all these innovations and evolutionary developments, I will be incorporating a full range of marinas, boardwalks, rail stations, and some commercial entertainment lots.
You can also see from the map, that Wilhelmshaven holds the eastern terminus of the Jade-Ems Ship Canal and a medium sized seaport. Each one of those represents a major undertaking.
The big news is that this city is also home to my first naval base. Traditionally, Wilhelmshaven was the home port of the Imperial Battlefleet. In my version, the city will host, specifically, the “battleline” of the High Sea Fleet – the big gun battleships. The Kaiser built 21 of the monsters – but I have only made room for 12 (I figure that’s more than enough to get the picture across). This is a naval “base” – not just an anchorage – so there will be all the support facilities you would expect to find ashore. If you’ve got good eyes – you can probably figure out what you’re looking at on the map!! (There will be other naval bases in the region that will host carriers, cruisers, destroyers, submarines, and even an air-mobile helicopter assault carrier.)
Another big step for me will be adding in some hill country. I have avoided any sort of terrain elevations up to this point, mainly because I was too involved in learning how to make so many other things work. (You have to remember that I was playing “wall to wall” vanilla Maxis versions of the game up until September of last year!)
HIATUS -- !!
Yes – I’m going back into hiatus-mode (read hibernation). That is one reason why this entry is so BIG -- I wanted to say it all and show it all before disappearing for a while. After analyzing Nuenburg, I already know that I do some of my best work when I'm not bothered with trying to update a CJ while I'm "building". The next one is a large map to start with, and the new landscape effects could add months to the Wilhelmshaven project. (Example – The Wasserturm Triangle – laying it out, growing it in, and landscaping took an entire evening for that small triangle!!) A large map is anybody’s guess !
But I’ll be back eventually – with THE FLEET !
OKAY -- !!
That’s a wrap!
ALL COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS WELCOME !!!
If you've got anything you want to say -- now is the time. Wilhelmshaven is still, largely, a "blank canvas" and I can investigate / incorporate any of your ideas without too much trouble.
ALL COMMENTS ENCOURAGED !! (ESPECIALLY SUGGESTIONS !!)
I am, however, looking forward to dropping by to see what new stuff you guys are working on!!