Well, after quite some time, I am back with a much overdue update. Today I will exhibit the region's cleanest city, River City, appropriately named for its position at the apex of the Green River and Branch River. Downtown sits nestled right along the river, as its suburbs spread out across the river in West City, and up towards the rolling green hills to the east. The city was originally founded by a group of settlers who left early Trentonburg for a cleaner, unspoiled landscape. They foresaw the eventual environmental calamity that would overtake Trentonburg, and established River City as a place where only clean industries would prosper, and everyone would live happier, healthier lives as a result. Below is an overall aerial shot showcasing the different areas. You will note the massive blacked-out area in South River City. This area is currently undergoing some urban renewal, with most of the funding coming from a private source. We will touch on that later.
As I said before, Downtown was settled very naturally between the two main rivers. As a result, the city is very dependant on its many bridges for transportation. The prosperous skyscrapers and high-rises in downtown are contrasted by the pretty green lawns and victorian houses on the other side of the river, making for some beautiful vistas from the top of the War Memorial at the apex of the rivers. That is, if you don't look to the north, where three massive ugly powerstations cough up thier soot and hydrocarbons. As much as this angers the denizens, there is nothing they can do, as these plants lay across the river, which is technically in another county, with its own governing bodies.
And a closer look at downtown; Below you can see the municipal center with City Hall, River County Courthouse, RCPD Headquarters, the County Census building, and the plaza, all centered around the main train station and underpass. The blue tower to the west of the plaza is the corporate headquarters for Larnwell Heavy Industries, which will come up next...
Larnwell Heavy Industries is a heavy manufacturing firm that popped up in the mostly unsettled former flood plains to the southwest of the main city. Below you can see thier buildings occupying the block between Larnwell Ave and Cassidy Road. A problem Larnwell ran into quickly was that the Trentonburg Central Railroad's mainline ran on the opposite side of the river, and as a result the company wasted a lot of money hiring trucks (originally horses and oxen) to haul thier goods up to the main rail depot in downtown. The solution they came up with was quite brilliant. You see, Larnwell used to own all the land shown below, however they didn't really need all that. So, they parceled up thier land and sold it all off to other industries one by one. With that money they were able to build thier own rail spur running eastward over the river to link up with the mainline. Thus, the district of Larnwell was born. And since the spur is owned by the company, they recoop thier costs by leasing trackage rights to the surrounding industries. Win-Win right?
At the complete opposite end of the city, in the northeast corner lies the industrial/commercial hub of Strawberry Fields (forever!) This area exhibits some of the cleaner, more technologically advanced industries that are indicative of the city. The industries are so clean in fact, that they don't result in any loss in property values or desirability, as you can see by the minor league stadium and shopping mall that dominate the photo. This area is proof that retail, industry, residences, and even entertainment can indeed live together and get along!
Up the hill from River City is Hillsdale (Creative name huh?) While geographically isolated from the city, this villiage still belongs to River City proper. And while it lacks the excitement of the main city, they do have a farmer's market, drive in movie lot, and, of course, a Bank of Trentonburg. Sometimes River City likes to pretend it doesn't own backwards Hillsdale, until it needs to dump its trash in the nearby landfill. Lucky for them the locals here are used to smelling cow manure all day and the landfill doesn't really bother them.
...And a sneak peek at South River City...
As I mentioned at the beginning, some urban renewal is currently going on in South River City, the city's earlier industrial section. The cleared blocks below were mostly old brownstones and rowhouses left over from the industrial revoltion that are now cleared. In addition to rezoning this area, the city (with a lot of funding from a private unmentioned source) will look to reconstruct Route 83, the main north-south avenue. Since this avenue also intersects the 3-way rail junction, it leads for insane traffic issues during the rush hour. It will be interesting to see how they will finagle the avenue and rail junction, while still maintaining access to the rail station further south and maintaining the integrety of the arterial. Oh, and who is this private funding source?