Renaissance of The Berlin Region
Posted 21 March 2011 - 08:41 PM
Posted 12 June 2011 - 10:14 AM
Mannheim (Linz Metropolitan Area)
Mannheim was a small city due north of Linz. It was a minor commercial hub and one of the few cities that did not contain any industry except for agriculture. It had a peak population of 13 200. The only known photo of the city displayed the commercial district, focusing on the Socale Embassy.
Many years ago, the regional government pursued diplomatic and economic relations with nearby regions, including Socale and Dynasty, in order to establish free trade and military alliances. Socale and Dynasty constructed embassies in the bustling suburbs surrounding Linz as a sign of joint prosperity and continued peace. But when Leverkusen invaded the southern communities and began its crusade against The Berlin Region, associate governments became worried about the increasing instability. The devastating conflict and subsequent civil unrest prompted Socale and Dynasty to sever ties with The Berlin Region and abandon the embassy program. Decades later, the political landscape has changed once again. Diplomatic relations with the former regions of Socale and Dynasty have not been re-established as those governments ceased to exist. The Berlin Region is now experiencing record growth thanks to the high tech revolution, which started in Spandau and swept through the western and southern communities. The eastern cities are the last to undergo the transformation and Mannheim is one such city. Due to the rapid pace of expansion, this community is nicknamed "The City Under Construction". Here is an overview of Mannheim with labels indicating the neighbourhoods and rural municipalities.
Mannheim's population of 35 400 is nearly triple its previous peak and growing rapidly. The city now boasts a small, but dense urban core with sprawling suburbs and state-of-the-art industrial facilities.
Here is a closer view of the city's urban core, with low-density development surrounding the Primary Business District. About 13 400 people work in or around the city. The rest commute to Linz for employment.
The village of Eopsa was once far away from built-up settlements. Urban sprawl has since chewed up a lot of rural land and the town is practically a neighbourhood of Mannheim.
Here is a photo of the completed section of Highway 4 and the Primary Business District. The route is part of the Linz Metropolitan Freeway Network and is set to be complete in a few years. The downtown core is given a special designation as suburban business parks and commercial districts are expected to be developed in the near future. Mannheim wants to retain its dense urban area, which was so pivotal to the city's early growth and expansion. Over 7800 of the 8600 commercial jobs in Mannheim are located in the Primary Business District. Approximately 4700 people live in the downtown core.
Mannheim is part of the Linz Metropolitan Area and as such, it's considered to be a suburb of Linz, even though it is an independent city. Currently, Mannheim contains a mix of built-up neighbourhoods and low density sprawl. Most of Merkenstok and South Cunningham consist of medium to high density housing. Due to limited space, a large underground parkade was built beneath the roundabout in order to provide parking for thousands of vehicles from neighbouring hi-rise tenants.
The neighbourhoods of Pixie Flats, St. Craig and St. Angela are prime examples of suburban development typical of the Linz Metropolitan Area.
But those districts are not the best representation of Mannheim. "The City Under Construction" is just that, a community undergoing rapid transformation, where dirt, cranes, heavy equipment, barricades and plenty of unfinished buildings rule the landscape. Almost every neighbourhood in Mannheim has some portion of it that's under construction. Highway 4 is one of the largest projects underway in Mannheim.
Areas surrounding the freeway are also experiencing rapid growth. Parts of South Cunningham are being completely revamped as a result of the new transportation networks.
Portions of Tesla Industrial Park are not yet complete as the district expands outward. This photo demonstrates the abrupt urban-rural fringe resulting from burgeoning neighbourhoods eating up agricultural land. The high-tech industry employs 2200 people.
High speed rail is also being built in Mannheim in order to relieve road congestion and encourage environmentally sustainable transport. The high speed rail project is a joint initiative between the municipal governments of the Linz Metropolitan Area and the regional government.
Before the high-tech revolution swept the region, areas surrounding Mannheim consisted mostly of thick forests, farms and ranches. The suburban neighbourhood of Whitebrick will eventually occupy what used to be crops and trees.
The northern part of Pixie Flats is still under construction. Nearby fields have yet to be purchased by developers, but in anticipation for future expansion, clearing has already begun.
A section of this forest is being cleared to make way for a four-lane avenue and more housing development. The road pictured here used to be part of the regional highway network before it became a throughway for local traffic. It's slated to be demolished when the avenue is complete.
The Mannheim Utility District used to be a massive landfill. Thanks to advances in environmental and energy technology, garbage is now being burned in state-of-the-art incinerators. The land is undergoing decontamination and new power plants are being built.
Areas well outside the city and not immune to the effects of the high-tech revolution. Wealthy residents recently constructed a luxurious country club in the middle of a forest.
The village of Eopsa is being subjected to suburbanization in a similar fashion to the western communities, such as the R.M. of Hannover and the small city of Tegel. Although the village has a population of merely 500 people, its become the central hub for what's left of the farming community. The farmers' market and the state fair are where farmers meet to barter and trade commodities.
Not all rural land has been overtaken by urban sprawl. Large swathes of ranches and open fields remain untouched north of Mannheim. Agriculture is still a major employer in the area as 1700 people, including several suburbanites, work in the industry. The peaceful ranches contrast sharply with the chaotic city not far away. Cows, horses and llamas are bred and raised here.
The state fair is an active place, especially during warm summer evenings.
The only time when construction takes a break is at night.
The underground parkade is all lit up after dusk.
High-density housing surrounds a bus stop and subway station. Nearly 14 000 people ride the subway to commute to Linz and 3500 people use the bus.
A high speed rail station stands out under the night sky. The line is barely complete and already 1000 people have signed up for transit passes. That number is expected to grow exponentially as the rail line is extended north and eastward. Additionally, 2000 people take the passenger train to commute to work.
An aerial view of Mannheim shows the blinding brightness of Highway 4 at night. Once development slows, the city is expected to surpass a population of 50 000 people.
Coming Up Next: Erfurt (Linz Metropolitan Area)
Posted 12 June 2011 - 06:41 PM
Congrats on 7 years!
This was quite an update. This city has a little bit of everything from rural to urban and construction of everything in between. Very nice.
Posted 23 June 2011 - 02:32 AM
Erfurt (Linz Metropolitan Area)
Erfurt was a suburban community directly west of Linz. It consisted of mixed-use neighbourhoods with a dirty industry base at the western edge of the city. It had a peak population of 10 000.
The city was the primary connection between the western communities and the Linz Metropolitan Area. Everyday, thousands of commuters and freight trucks would travel through Erfurt to reach Linz and its suburbs.
Erfurt housed the Dynasty embassy before it was demolished in the aftermath of the war.
Erfurt was once home to the region's first large scale wilderness area, Twin Rapids Provincial Park. The nature reserve was centred around Twin Rapids and the nearby springs, which originated from underground aquifers. The park would play an important role in designing Sylvan Lake Regional Park near Rostock. Unfortunately, most of the park burnt down only a few years after opening for the public when lightning from a dry thunderstorm ignited a ferocious blaze.
Several decades later, Erfurt has changed considerably, much like its suburban counterparts. But unlike its neighbouring cities, the high-tech revolution did not play an essential role in redeveloping the city. Instead, tens of thousands of working class citizens from the Konradshohe-Spandau Metroplex chose to start anew just outside Linz. Displaced by rapid gentrification in the western communities, immigrants played a key role in reshaping Erfurt from a mixed-use suburb to a dense, bedroom community. The city now boasts a population of 71 000, making it the third most densely populated city in The Berlin Region, after Linz and Konradshohe. Here is an overview of Erfurt with labels indicating the neighbourhoods and rural municipalities.
The city is a transportation hub, as it connects with Lübeck to the north, Linz to the east and farming settlements to the west. It is also the end point for the Old Berlin Highway and the starting point for Highway 2, an eight-lane freeway that bisects Linz.
Agriculture was never a major employer in the area as farms to the west proved much more profitable. The logging industry has since become a major driving force supporting rural development.
With the decline of dirty industries and the rise of the high-tech revolution, Erfurt's industrial base was decimated. Most structures were abandoned as small, dirty industries were bought out or went bankrupt. Subsequently, many were demolished, allowing nature to slowly reclaim part of the land. The remainder of the industrial district was turned into the Bernstein Truck Stop, which acts as an inland port for the Linz Metropolitan Area. The truck stop receives raw goods from the farming communities to the west and also processes commodities from the industrial sectors of the Konradshohe-Spandau Metroplex. It also exports merchandise to Leverkusen's seaport for international trade.
The suburban neighbourhoods of Linea, Melbourne Heights and Jirnsum Ridge are examples of transit-oriented development, where the community surrounds major mass transit stops. In this case, the aforementioned suburbs are directly connected to Linz's subway system through easily accessible subway stations. About 27 000 people use the subway to commute to Linz.
Additional transit-oriented development surrounds the region's first high speed rail terminal in the suburb of Williamson. The line carries over 8000 people per day.
Most of the working class citizens from the Konradshohe-Spandau Metroplex reside in City Centre. Despite the city's large population, only 10 000 work within Erfurt. Approximately 7000 people are employed in the commercial sector while 3000 work for the high-tech, logging or trucking industries.
Here's a closer view of the railway that runs between Jirnsum Ridge and Melbourne Heights. For those who do not have access to the subway or high speed rail, over 20 000 people take the passenger train to work and 11 000 take the bus. These numbers also include nearly 8000 commuters from the Konradshohe-Spandau Metroplex.
High speed rail station in the suburb of Bennet
Here is the starting point for Highway 13, where it branches off from Highway 1.
Sprawling neighbourhood of Holtz Woods
Logging vehicles hard at work just outside Erfurt
Here's a close up of Bernstein Truck Stop. Facilities include weight stations, truck washes, transfer facilities for rail transport, restaurants and of course, plenty of parking.
The high speed rail terminal is quite a sight after dusk.
The few commercial high-rises in Erfurt's urban core light up the sky.
The logging industry never sleeps.
Same goes for truckers.
A lone freight train travels west through the untamed wilderness...
Coming Up Next: Linz
Posted 23 June 2011 - 07:02 PM
Looks really great. I especially like all your rail improvments. That HSR terminal is a favorite of mine.
The rural highway mod goes quite well here too.
Great work! I'm looking forward to seeing Linz.
Posted 27 June 2011 - 07:17 AM
Posted 05 July 2011 - 03:12 AM
Linz was more of a project as opposed to a city. It was an idea conceived by the regional government, financed by the private sector and populated by modern-day pioneers. The goal was to create a large city in as short a time as possible. This city would consist of a compact central business district surrounded by high-density residential districts in the inner city and lower density suburban communities toward the outskirts. Linz was going to be the beating heart of the region, an emblem of innovation and a beacon of entrepreneurialism. Like most cities in the region, Linz started off small, with a population of 600, which quickly increased to 1000.
The city used the grid system in order to make development as efficient as possible. In this photo, the town has a population of 8800.
Linz expanded considerably when vast tracts of land north of the townsite were purchased for development. The city's population skyrocketed to 20 000 then doubled within a couple of years.
However, the city was not growing according to plan. Instead of having a concentrated downtown, most of the tallest buildings lined one thoroughfare, resulting in a thinly spread business district.
Even as the city grew to a peak population of 186 000, the dense central business district never really materialized.
Most development was concentrated on a nearby mesa, which was formerly an ancient volcano. The layout of the mesa was disorganized due to poor city planning and inadequate road systems.
Ambitious plans were in place to rezone entire neighbourhoods and force businesses to relocate to a small, designated high-density core. But when the city-state of Leverkusen began invading communities of the south, all plans were shelved. War was fast approaching and the city had to prepare itself.
Leverkusen's armed forces were crushed and the city-state was eventually annexed to The Berlin Region. But the city-state was not going down without a fight. Only hours after the decisive battle, a rogue agent planted a suitcase nuke in downtown Linz and detonated it.
The region's beating heart had stopped. About 95 000 people perished in the blast. Those who survived the nuclear explosion were ordered to evacuate the city. With Rostock and Bremerhaven in ruins and the Linz Metropolitan Area reduced to a ghost town, it looked as though the entire region was crippled. Civil unrest engulfed the remaining communities and the regional government could not contain the chaos. The only cities left intact in the aftermath of the war were Konradshohe and Spandau. Ultimately, social order was restored and citizens could begin rebuilding their livelihoods. The Linz Metropolitan Area was declared off-limits due to high levels of radiation. Linz and its suburban cities sat vacant for decades.
Thankfully, the city was not lost for good. The high-tech revolution was about to transform Linz from nuclear wasteland to commercial metropolis. Besides redeveloping the Konradshohe-Spandau Metroplex and countless other cities, the high-tech revolution also renewed hope for a new beating heart for the entire region. Advances in environmental technology and transportation networks enabled scientists to determine a method for decontaminating the area within only a few years. In the mean time, city planners came up with a brand new blueprint for Linz. The city's mixed-use central business district would be divided into several sectors including financial districts, urban green spaces and specialized neighbourhoods built around specific buildings, known as local landmarks. Finally, after nearly 100 years of construction and over §6 000 000 worth of funding, Linz has become the beacon of entrepreneurialism as envisioned by its forefathers. Here is an overview of Linz with labels indicating the neighbourhoods and rural municipalities.
Linz is the most populated city in The Berlin Region with over 291 000 people calling it home. Once empty land surrounding the city is purchased for development, the population is expected to approach half a million.
As soon as the terrain was decontaminated, the former central business district was completely restructured. Zones were much larger in order to better accommodate bigger, taller skyscrapers. Developers were hesitant at first but after generous tax breaks and burgeoning demand, construction accelerated at a furious pace.
Nearly 100 years later, the central business district employs 179 000 people. Close to 90 000 people live in the area.
The central business district has expanded southward and eastward as well. New neighbourhoods such as Bishopsgate Crossing and the University District are prime examples of the blueprint envisioned by Linz's city planners during the reconstruction period. The University District is a specialized neighbourhood, centred around the University of Linz, a local landmark. Bishopsgate Crossing is a high density mixed-use quarter with office towers, retail outlets, luxurious condominiums and low-wealth projects.
The northern residential areas have also changed. Although the grid system is still partially used, neighbourhoods have been redesigned to conform to the natural landscape and offer convenient access to mass transit systems. The subway is the most popular form of mass transit with 88 000 people using it to commute to work.
The hi-rises that once dotted the mesa have been demolished. Most buildings were beyond repair after decaying for decades. The entire area was rezoned for low-density, suburban dwellings with space for a few higher density structures. The mesa is connected to the rest of the city through the subway network and Highway 104, also known as the Connector Loop. The mesa accounts for the city's first and only suburban districts until more land is purchased.
The Connector Loop intersects with Highway 2 at Junction 2D, which is part of the Linz Metropolitan Freeway Network.
The medium density neighbourhoods of Cox-Maybush and Stafford line The Boardwalk, a riverside embankment designed to minimize erosion and provide recreational facilities for residents. These are the newest neighbourhoods of Linz.
Watt Industrial Park was transformed from a polluted power district to a clean, modern industrial park. The expansive parking lots will eventually be replaced by more power plants once energy requirements are fulfilled by the growing city.
Linz MIB (Military-Industrial Base) is located several kilometres south of the city and serves as a military outpost and a manufacturing hub. The base was constructed at the height of the war and was essential for pushing back Leverkusen's armed forces. Most of the military facilities have been converted for civilian use although an air force base and training grounds still remain. The Linz International Airport now occupies most of the land formerly used by the military.
Time for a closer look at Linz. Junction 2C is where Highway 4 branches off of Highway 2 and heads north toward Mannheim. Overhead light towers still need to be installed in order to provide better illumination at night.
Suburban neighbourhood of West Hitchcock
The regional prison is built in an isolated area, just off Highway 104. If prisoners manage to escape, they must negotiate thick forests, dangerous cliffs and busy highways.
The divide between residential suburbia, dense commerce and urban dwellings is strikingly evident in this photo.
The Unisphere was constructed in Watt Industrial Park as a sign of Linz's industrial dominance and commercial supremacy.
Transit City is the centrepiece of the central business district. Three separate facilities handle nearly 44 000 commuters per day through seven different transportation networks. Transit City is already at two thirds capacity, even though the high speed rail lines and subway system are not yet complete. The high speed rail station is partially obstructed by skyscrapers.
In between the columns of hi-rises lies a pedestrian mall. The northern section is underground and contains several shops whereas the southern portion is entirely above ground.
A noticeable feature of the central business district is a large section of green space named Phoenix Park. Much like the mythical bird, Linz rose from the ashes to begin anew. Heritage Row, consisting of five hi-rises that survived the nuclear explosion, borders the park to the south.
Diamond Financial District is a major commercial sector of the central business district. It's named after the twin towers that are part of Diamond Financial Centre, the largest commercial complex in the entire region. Over 12 000 people work in the towers.
Riverside Commerce Park features bike paths and a promenade alongside the river.
The bike paths continue close to The Boardwalk before crisscrossing through the newest neighbourhoods of Linz.
Urban trails, biking facilities and streetside parking are part of the city's recreational initiatives.
Linz's rapid expansion has strained road networks. Rural municipalities that haven't been developed but lie just outside the city are suffering from congestion.
After sundown, Linz becomes the region's night light.
Suburban offices at night
The high density residential neighbourhoods are decked out with splashes of colour.
The central business district is an amazing sight after dusk...
An overview of the city at night...
Coming Up Next: Regional Overview
Posted 05 July 2011 - 06:53 AM
Also, I want your plugins folder. I have such a hard time finding buildings and transportation lots/mods/textures I like.
Posted 05 July 2011 - 07:43 AM
Posted 06 July 2011 - 06:57 PM
Nice downtown development and that multi-modal station looks great. How are it's usage numbers?
Posted 21 July 2011 - 05:43 PM
Occasionally, the links to photos from Imageshack go dead for some reason. They all show up for me, so maybe it's an issue with your browser or internet connection. Try emptying your browser's cache or resetting it.
That would probably be impossible. My plugins folder is nearly 2.7 GB in size.
It's being used about half of its 40 000 capacity, although that can vary from month to month. Keep in mind that the high speed rail and elevated rail systems are only partially complete, so it's usage is likely to increase as the city expands.
Thanks for the comments everyone! This update will be an overview of the entire region. I'll demonstrate the drastic changes that have occurred since we began our journey over five years ago...
Prior to the war, The Berlin Region had a population of 326 000. About 131 000 people had commercial jobs while 64 000 worked for the industrial sector.
Click HERE for a larger image.
Here were the region's transportation networks.
Click HERE for a larger image.
After a burst of energy from the high-tech revolution and decades of redevelopment, The Berlin Region is considerably larger. The region is now a major international industrial exporter and commercial centre. Currently, 756 000 people live in the region. Approximately 346 000 are employed in commerce while 126 000 work for the industrial sector.
Click HERE for a larger image.
Here are the region's transportation networks. NOTE: In order to accommodate the Real Highway Mod, a different colour scheme for the transportation map is used. BLACK now represents highways whereas RED represents railways. BLUE represents light rail and MAGENTA represents high speed rail.
Click HERE for a larger image.
The following photos are close ups of the region's most populated corridors. Here is a picture of the Konradshohe-Spandau Metroplex. The residential skyscrapers of Konradshohe are near the top-centre of the photo whereas Spandau's central business district is in the middle. The lower density suburban community of Rostock is directly south of the clusters of hi-rises.
- R: 72 000
- C: 56 000
- I: 26 000
- R: 269 000
- C: 110 000
- I: 42 000
Here is a picture of the Linz Metropolitan Area. The massive central business district can be easily identified. Erfurt is west of Linz, Lübeck is northwest and Mannheim is immediately north. The beige coloured fields in the right-hand corner are areas under construction in Mannheim.
- R: 212 000
- C: 60 000
- I: 28 000
- R: 410 000
- C: 205 000
- I: 49 000
Largest Residential Populations
- Linz: 291 000
- Konradshohe: 177 000
- Erfurt: 71 000
- Spandau: 70 000
- Leverkusen: 47 000
- Linz: 184 000
- Spandau: 64 000
- Konradshohe: 28 000
- Leverkusen: 23 000
- Rostock: 18 000
- Linz: 34 000
- Spandau: 20 000
- Konradshohe: 16 000
- Bremerhaven: 15 000
- Leverkusen: 14 000
- Highway 1 (Spandau-Linz): 12.1 KM (7.5 mi)
- Highway 2 (Erfurt-Linz): 5.4 KM (3.4 mi)
- Highway 13 (Erfurt-Lübeck): 5.1 KM (3.2 mi)
- Highway 15 (Linz-Mannheim): 4.3 KM (2.7 mi)
- Highway 10 (Leverkusen-Bremerhaven): 4.2 KM (2.6 mi)
Posted 21 July 2011 - 06:31 PM
Looking really good sir. You make me want to get SC4 up and running again.
Posted 24 July 2011 - 12:41 PM
Posted 25 July 2011 - 03:42 AM