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Hurricane City Journal

Hurricane City Photo Journal Part 1

Rating: 4 votes, 5.75 average.
Original posting: 7/17/2009 15:07

This is just a little photographic history of the main city of Hurricane County. Enjoy

Hurricane City Photo Journal

Hurricane City began as the first city in a new region known as the H.P.A., or Hurricane Protection Allies (now known as Hurricane County). The idea was to create a region around a central city that would be massive, far bigger than anything I had ever built. Hurricane City was to be that city, and so the groundwork was laid. With very little experience in city building, and certainly no idea of how to build a large city, I set out with a new plan, the grid design, to begin building a somewhat experimental city, that I could only hope would work out in the end. I had no idea what would happen, it was a concept I had never tried.

In the beginning things went okay. It was slow, took a lot of work, and honestly was a little boring. My dream idea of creating a monster city wasn't coming together as I thought it would. I thought I could just lay out the foundations and let it grow, but I found out quick it wasn't that easy. As I said before Hurricane City was a completely new idea to me. I had built a couple regions before, but none ever got very far, and each one was deleted.

But I had always tried the same thing and failed, and decided to try something new here. Instead of using the layout provided when zoning, I used a grid method of laying out roads beforehand, and then placed the zones inside the blocks. But the zones themselves were also different. I used an alternating pattern of only commecial and residential, and left industrial zones completely out of the city. In this way the city would be cleaner, traffic would flow better, and would allow for the biggest population. It was a great idea I thought, but I had never tried it and was unsure how it would work for a big city. Before Hurricane City, the biggest city I had managed to build was only 150,000. I could only hope my new idea would work better.

The above two pictures are the very earliest pictures of Hurricane City that still exist. These were taken in year 67, with a city population of just 46,122. At this stage the city was very much still an infant, but it was starting to show that the city was going to be something big. It took 67 years to amass 46,000 people, certainly not a world record. The beginning years were indeed a very slow but thoughtful process, laying out every single detail one step at a time. The city was definitely taking its time to grow, but it was tough starting out with no idea how to approach things; I learned as I went. The regional population at this point had probably not even cracked the 100k mark, which unknown to me at the time, is probably what stunted the early growth so much. It was actually a good thing it took so long to build up the population though, as it gave me lots of time to get everything right.

All of that time getting every specific detail just right paid off too. Fast forward just 4 years and we get this picture:

It is like a whole new city has been added on from the previous picture, as is true with the population. Just after the previous two pictures were taken in year 67, a massive population explosion occurred in Hurricane City. It was the beginning of a long era of fast-paced expansion. 67 years to gain 46,122 people, but only 4 more years to get to 110,301. The city had literally more than doubled in size in just 4 years. The skyscrapers had become more common, adding to the boom. To give you an idea of just how fast the city was growing, here is a picture taken just 28 game-days later:

It doesn't appear that anything has changed, but the city population had gone from 110,000, to 129,000 just in the time between taking these two pictures! This is probably one of the best examples of just how fast Hurricane City progressed. Nearly 20,000 people entered the city in less than a month, half the poulation of the city at year 67. And things certainly were not slowing down. In fact, the city picked up the pace even more as time went on and as the city matured.

The rest of H.P.A. Was still falling behind though, as not much was happening in the rest of the region. Almost all of the 198,000 residents in the region were living in Hurricane City. The only other major development in the region was industry. Since Hurricane City had none, the cities situated next to Hurricane City were there to pick up the slack in the demand, and provide Sims with outlying jobs. The system I had envisioned was coming together nicely, and was only getting better with each passing month.

Another two years passes between pictures, and the city looks completely different. This picture, dated Apr. 28, 74, clearly shows the appearance of large skyscrapers that are now commonly popping up in the city, as the original caption for the picture indicates: 'Skyscrapers are now common in Hurricane City, 4-28-74, population 209,000'. The city was definitely beginning to show a lot more height to it than in previous years, as skyscrapers and hi-rises dominated the landscape.

Three distinct areas of buildings jump out in this picture, one in the south, one the middle, and one in the north. These areas soon became known as the south end, the central and the north end. It almost became competition to see what would grow the fastest, and see what two areas would first be joined into one vast sea of buildings.

This picture, dated 11-4-74, just 7 months later, shows a close up view of the north end, which would soon dominate the city as the fastest growing and biggest of the districts. As can be seen in this picture if you're looking hard enough, most of the skyscrapers are residential, while commercial zones are still left unoccupied. That's because of the fact that Hurricane City did suffer from a few “quiet” periods in which the city suffered from commecial development falling behind. The residential population was growing so fast that commerce simply didn't have enough demand to keep up, causing the city to sometimes slow down in growth. But those times were always very brief, and city expansion soon was back to its normal wide-open self.

8 years have passed since the previous picture, it is now year 82 in Hurricane City's timeline. The city, besides the huge eastward expansion and growth of the north end, looks just about the same. Almost nothing has been done on my part since the city started booming in year 67 except zoning more area. I have pretty much just sat back and let the city grow ever since, and grow it has. It may not look like it, but this picture is actually showing the 500,000 population mark in Hurricane City. That is a very important landmark in any city, and thus I took a picture, which also recorded the date and a view of the city. Good thing I was thinking. It is amazing to think that in only 15 years, the city had grown by over 450,000 people. That is an average of over 30,000 a year. Hurricane City was certainly flourishing by this point, it was now in full force in the midst of the population explosion. I began to call it, 'The Great Boom', but only because I couldn't think of anything else.

It was definitely an exciting time for me, I felt as though I had finally achieved something I had been yearning for. To go from someone who couldn't hold a successful city of 150,000, to creating a booming city of half a million felt awesome. By this point however, I started to doubt how much longer this population explosion could last. Surely, I thought, the city has to be running out of steam. It cannot possibly sustain this huge growth much longer.

Or so I thought...

Continue to Part 2 to see the rest!
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