Questions tagged [cities]

For questions about cities, their systems and evolution.

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27
votes
20answers
6k views

How would you build a road system that respected nature?

How would build a road system or transportation system that respected nature with the following constraints: No paved roads or less than 10% paved roads can’t use gasoline (oil) allow nature to ...
5
votes
7answers
684 views

In a city full of superheroes, what items would still be worth stealing? [closed]

Supposing around 1% of the world population has some kind of superpower, about 70-80 million people on earth, and only 1% of those have taken to superherodom, what items would be worth the risk of ...
6
votes
2answers
162 views

Underground Cities

Assuming ancient levels of technology, perhaps 2500-1500 BC, how would one be able to make a underground city like that of Kaymaklı, while having it be able to be breathed in and, is possible, have a ...
3
votes
2answers
166 views

How large could an oceangoing vessel be and still be able to move?

On some far-distant waterworld, the entire human race has been moved to vast city-ships that endlessly traverse the global ocean. Assuming an unlimited supply of fuel, how large could such a floating ...
0
votes
1answer
130 views

What kind policies, background elements and institutions would be required for a city to have 900,000 people in an Iron Age Setting?

For example Rome had between 600,000 to a million people at its height. This was due to urban planning, water aqueducts, trade and the grain dole. What would be required for such a fictional city ...
10
votes
19answers
4k views

How Do I Keep the Population of an Ecumenopolis Reasonable?

In the galaxy I'm worldbuilding for my science-fantasy series, by far the most important planet in the galaxy is an ecumenopolis called Ishga. What I had in mind for this planet is something ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

In a dystopian, post-apocalyptic unified North American nation, would Denver make for a good capital city?

Maps for reference I’m creating a Godzilla fanfiction worldbuilding project and in it, after Canada collapsed into a lawless mess and the US moved to annex the country, the US formed the United States ...
4
votes
8answers
236 views

Why would people migrate to a colony with miserable living conditions? [closed]

So I'm working on a world where 19th century humans discovered a portal to a faraway alien planet, and since it's the 19th century they decide to colonize it. Just few decades after the discovery ...
0
votes
0answers
21 views

What would an underwater city's architecture look like? [duplicate]

Say we have a race of water-breathing humanoids who erect a city on a part of the continental shelf around 460 feet deep. Assuming the city has a population of around ten thousand and technology is ...
3
votes
4answers
149 views

How would having many small towns vs a few big cities affect a countries society and economy?

Kind of a theoretical question, but if a small country in a late medieval-ish era sought to discourage large, crowded, dirty, and poor cities by encouraging more towns of a smaller size, how much ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

How to protect a secure compound breached by a small modern military?

I am trying to work out some of the final details of a modern urban compound, surrounded by perimeter walls and a gate. A battle (modern urban warfare with firearms and grenades mainly) takes place ...
32
votes
9answers
8k views

Can we get rid of all illnesses by a year of Total Extreme Quarantine?

Earth-Year: 2618. Location: Planet Hope, Proxima Centauri. Terraformation status: 97.8% Earth-like. Population: 128.596. The residents of this planet live in a paradise-like environment. The gravity ...
12
votes
13answers
4k views

Why would a flourishing city need so many outdated robots?

Near future, Boston, United States of America. This city brands itself as the leader in both medicine and quantum computing. The city looks awfully youthful and energetic; after all, they cured old ...
3
votes
3answers
115 views

How would airbubbles/moonpools be achieved in a deepwater marine mammal civilisation?

I am developing an ocean world for a story involving marine mammals, and the biggest issue I cannot settle on is whether to have deep or shallow civilisations. The main concern is that their ...
4
votes
1answer
245 views

Is it realistic to depict a gradual growth from group of huts into a village and town? Or is it more realistic to depict it as series of big jumps?

Is it typical or at least sometimes happening to have a town that started as a group of huts? And have gradually and organically grown into a village and later into a town? To be more specific, it ...
3
votes
2answers
100 views

Expanding a free floating underwater city

Okay, I have a planet with a global ocean of liquid water, and there are these cities in the ocean, floating a few hundred to a few thousand meters beneath the waves. They have spaceports that allow ...
3
votes
2answers
218 views

How do I create a realistic world and country?

I know this is a very broad question, so I'll try to narrow this down. I'm writing a novel about faeries who live in another realm, and the faeries live on an island. The capital city is there too, ...
56
votes
14answers
7k views

What circumstances could lead to city layout based on hexagons?

Most modern planned cities are based on grid layouts. Historic cities are more organic on a macroscopic level, but buildings are still generally square-shaped leading to grid-based layouts on the ...
6
votes
7answers
648 views

Could a city live in a money-free system in a medieval fantasy setting?

I am currently building a world based in a medieval fantasy setup. View it as if the world got a soft reset and cannot (I say cannot) go further than electricity, and I imagined a village where people ...
2
votes
0answers
61 views

How to Make Columbia from Bioshock a Reality [duplicate]

This is Columbia, the city featured in the video game Bioshock: Infinite. It stands out in that this city floats in Earth's atmosphere. How? Some sci-fi handwavium called "the Lutece Particle&...
8
votes
3answers
261 views

What would determine the rate that a hereditary condition reveals itself after years of dormancy?

Long ago, an Eldritch deity was summoned to the city of Innsmouth within a ritual circle, where it was killed and consumed by the population. Devouring the flesh of the deity increased the mana supply ...
7
votes
2answers
129 views

How do I strike a balance between real-world inspiration and purely fictional design, especially for alternate cities? [closed]

My primary question comes from a fledgling animator's perspective. I'd like to capture the general look and feel of a lot of South Florida's cities, while also combining it with my urban-fantasy/...
9
votes
2answers
177 views

What Would it take for Trees with Stone Core to be Self Supporting?

So I have an idea for a biome in which avian humanoids are the dominant intelligent lifeform. They live inside of trees that dwarf the redwoods of our world. The trees grow so tall and so thick (akin ...
3
votes
3answers
204 views

Medieval city trading hands frequently over 200 years

In my world there's this city that is primarily based upon sub-Saharan African Islamic architecture and culture, but it's on the coast connecting the rest of the world to the continent. It's the ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

How many laws would a parkouring superhero like Spider-Man break by travelling around New York? [closed]

There are a large number of superheroes who get around via some kind of super-parkour. These range from superheroes who swing webbing like Spider-Man and his many imitators (e.g., Spinnerette), to ...
5
votes
5answers
285 views

What areas of expertise does a national council need? [closed]

First time asking a question. So my DM asked me to help design a city in our campaign country. Now to be able to give the city a function in the bigger picture i was wondering how the country could ...
5
votes
5answers
172 views

Can a city develop without exterior trading?

I’m exploring different scenarios for a future D&D campaign. I want to know if it’s possible, for a growing settlement, to develop without trading with its neighbors. Let’s assume that they can ...
19
votes
19answers
5k views

Why would a modern city built on flat land in a relatively large country have little to no urban sprawl?

I am making an RPG and am using this image (source: https://www.pixiv.net/en/artworks/58916801) as inspiration for a large city. This city: Is located in a country roughly the size of Panama Has ...
5
votes
3answers
605 views

How to hide a city?

There are about 1000 people, with medieval technologies, that want to build a hidden city (so other people can't find it, or with minimal chance). They must: have access water have access to food ...
7
votes
3answers
145 views

Nipping urban sprawl in the bud

'The culture of good place-making, like the culture of farming, or agriculture, is a body of knowledge and acquired skills. It is not bred in the bone, and if it is not transmitted from one generation ...
24
votes
27answers
9k views

How can I prevent the invention of skyscrapers?

Introduction I want my story, set in the modern day, to have a unique architectural feel. Part of my strategy - no skyscrapers. Wikipedia: The term skyscraper was first applied to buildings of ...
3
votes
3answers
108 views

In futuristic domed cities terrified of pandemics, how would spread be prevented between domes?

With the Covid-19 pandemic currently underway, it's a bit easier to imagine a world where the virus is more lethal and even brutal measures are used to contain the spread of diseases. In the scenario ...
4
votes
4answers
563 views

Planning intra-city public air transport

I want to have air transport as the dominant means of public transportation in my fictional city. But how would such a system operate to handle many commuters with maximum efficiency? Specifically I'm ...
3
votes
2answers
198 views

What condition would the Guggenheim building in Bilbao, Spain, be in 400 years from now in a post-apocalypse?

(I posted something earlier and was asked to edit it. I'm new here so … learning is painful, what can I say) I'm Derek B. Miller. I'm the author of Norwegian by Night, The Girl in Green, and American ...
2
votes
5answers
163 views

How bright and lit up could cities be in the future?

Technology will obviously make lamps much brighter and with wholly new designs and functions like self-illuminating walls, surfaces and glowing objects. Genetic engineering could also create trees and ...
5
votes
3answers
154 views

Outside of architecture, what other things can be considered city “style”? [closed]

In the design of cities, you add a style factor to a city to flesh it out for your readers and players to give it a solid foundation as a place to visit. The primary style is its architecture. ...
18
votes
7answers
8k views

U.S. Army/Military's response time to an army appearing in the middle of a major city

In the scenario I have in mind, a handful of portals appear in a major U.S. city from which an army of golems starts pouring forth with the intent to cause as much damage as possible. The specifics ...
5
votes
4answers
337 views

Urban design that counters shapeshifters?

Set in the present day Shanghai, China. Humans co-exist with another intelligent species with the ability to shapeshift at will, the shapeshifters like to morph into various objects (both animate and ...
3
votes
4answers
204 views

Need a North American location with a large city and whitewater river for post-apocalyptic fiction

My story has several key locations that I would like to ground in a real place in North America. It takes place 50-60 years in the future after 97% of humanity has been wiped out. I'm having a hell of ...
10
votes
7answers
2k views

How big could a meteor crater be without causing significant secondary effects?

I need to wipe out a city. Not a huge one (I won't let them grow beyond a certain limit), but big enough to need to do some pretty serious damage. Let's say something similar in size to Pompeii. (yes.....
2
votes
2answers
151 views

How can an urban street gang develop into a nationwide criminal organization?

Inner city street gangs are often made up of minority groups in disadvantaged neighborhoods. Bloods, crips, latin kings, etc are just a fee of these groups that plague their communities and make their ...
6
votes
3answers
767 views

How bright were medieval cities at night, seen from the sky?

I'm a witch flying on my broomstick over 14th century England. I've got regular human eyes, and my cruising height is 500 metres or up to a kilometre, depending on the weather. Assuming it is a ...
3
votes
1answer
173 views

Speed of civilization change

Imagine one to three persons going back in time to a society like that of the Roman Kingdom (the period before the Republic), and they attempt to reform as well as modernize to an extent (up to the ...
4
votes
3answers
105 views

Considerations on settlements and urban development on a colonized exoplanet

When humans are colonizing a new planet, what are the considerations that need to be made for settlement placement and development? For this particular question, let's consider the following ...
3
votes
4answers
234 views

How can the vagrant mafia use pigeons to deliver messages?

My name is the Bowery King, the ultimate information broker in my City. My plan to take over the criminal underworld involves using homeless people as spies and informants. This network would keep ...
10
votes
7answers
640 views

Practical uses for a city on top of another city?

So I was playing Deus Ex and came across Hengsha, a city so large they built another city on top of it. This got my mind wondering about the practical uses of such a city. Let's assume that the ...
11
votes
6answers
2k views

How could a medieval fortress manage large groups of migrants and travelers?

The Red Keep was built thousands of years ago to defend against the invading hordes. The Red Keep itself is a fortress, the main wall of which blocks off the main pass through the mountains. Over the ...
4
votes
1answer
122 views

How would a civilization that evolved with access to buoyant building materials approach modern architecture? [closed]

In this world, there exists a type of material that has mass, but is incredibly buoyant in atmosphere. 1 kg of this material attached to 1 kg of any other material will be neutrally buoyant at sea ...
21
votes
11answers
4k views

Why do people prefer metropolitan areas, considering monsters and villains?

About fifty years ago, a number of people started to get really lucky. While normal humans when exposed to toxic waste, radiation etc. die, these guys actually managed to exploit previously unknown ...
5
votes
3answers
336 views

What jobs would people work in a frontier railroad town? [closed]

What would people do in 1860s railroad towns? In a place similar to frontier America, it seems towns are built around very clear purposes. A majority of people would follow the town specific ...

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