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Parkland - adventures in realism

Started by RON-E, September 25, 2007, 07:49:24 PM

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Welcome all to my MD! I have spent A LOT of time working on this one. It took me a near two weeks just to get the trees layed out in the region due to it being so large. There are over 256 cities in this region. The largest I have ever worked with. Most of the tiles are for aesthetic purposes only though, so don't go thinking im trying to populate all those tiles.

My style of region design is built around the principles of realism. Which are sometimes very hard to come by when it comes to Sim City. I spend a lot of time and effort and meticulous detailing on each of my cities. I may do things over and over again just so it looks right in the city. For this reason, sometimes updates may only happen once a week. This is for the sake of quality over quantity. I am not going to post a ton of pointless entries just to get views.

I spend a lot of time laying out my designs in my mind and on paper, long before they hit the mouse in-game. The layout i have now, took me several days just to map out the rail and highways. I always start with the highways, rail and major infrastructure before i do anything else. This way it creates borders for the growth to hit and it make it more realistic. I measure out the distance in miles it is in game so it can be more realistic that way too.

OK! enough blabbing... Here is Parkland!

click on image for larger picture (10mb, you have been warned)

This is a heavily modded version of motina's Greater Vancouver Region that was originally intended for use in the now dead realism project. You can find the original map for download here :

I am using several mods for this region, they are noted below, all of which can either be found here at SC4D or ST :

-American Traffic Mod
-Andreas'  BART Bus, El, Rail automata
-Bridge Height Mod
-BSC Funding Mod
-Clean Air Ordinance
-Columbus Terrain Mod, with Elm trees as main tree planter
-Commercial Cap Mod
-Crime Doesn't Pay Ordinance
-Diagonal Jagged Edges Mod
-Extra Terrain Tools
-Sydney Transit View Mod
-No Palms
-No Rail Dirt (pegasus)
-No One Way Arrows Mod
-Radical Ordinances Mod
-Water And Power Conservation Mod
-Residential Cap Mod
-Slope Mod
-Street Light Mod
-Streetside Mod
-Uni-Desnity Streets
-Water Mod
-Asphalt Texture Highway Mod
-Zebra Avenue Mod
-Zoning Mod

As you can see, I use a lot of mods, some would consider some of those cheats. But since SC4 does not allow for realism on its own, you have to incorporate outside help to get to the point where you can make a visually appealing, realistic city.

If you have any questions as we go, just let me know! I will try to respond to every post!




Page 1 :
Major Infrastructure Layout (2 images)
Some general info/plans (5 images)
Street Layout (2 images)

Page 2 :
Street Layout Update (2 images)
Close Ups (15 images)
Region View Updates (2 images)
Region View (2 images)


This took me a long time to place the layout of this city's major infrastructure to where i thought it looked realistic.

click image for larger version (10mb) you have been warned!

As you can see, it consists of 2 major highways. The East/West highway, and the North/South highway. Beyond that, there are 2 major loops and three other parkways that provide access to major destinations inside the city (airport, downtown, suburbs).

There is still some improvement to be made on the end pieces on the very south of the region and the very west of the region. they al of the sudden go very straight. i am still thinking about terraforming these areas into something more than just plains. Or i might leave them and create farmland on them.

The highways and loops labeled.

As you can see, the main East West Highway is I55
The Main North South Highway is I24
The Southwest loop is I455
The Northeast loop is I255
The main parkway that links the east bank across from downtown, all the way the the west side of town to the airport is State Highway 90
The little spur that leads off of I55 is I155, a little spur parkway that link the I55 to the airport


Interesting start here, RON-E. Your highways and infrastructure look good so far, I can't wait to see how you develop the region further!


Looking intresting here Ron - E and i for sure will be checking back - pat

Don't forget the SC4D Podcast is back and live on Saturdays @ 12 noon CST!! -- The Podcast soon to Return Here Linkie


Interesting region and number of mods you use.

I look forward to seeing how this will develop :thumbsup:

Kettle's on. Milk? Sugars?    ps I don't like Earl Grey  $%Grinno$%
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle - If you're not part of the solution , you're part of the problem!
"Never knock on Death's door: Ring the bell and run away! Death really hates that!"
Tales at TeaTime      Now A proper NUT      TTC plays GRV II


Fantastic looking region there and wonderful start! Looking forward to more...


thundercracker : thanks, i took a lot of time out for the highways, im glad they are not going un-appreciated!

patfirefghtr : thanks! stay around!

thetecat : a lot of the mods i use are for a certain look in the region, like the automata, the terrain mod, etc.

bat : thanks! stay around!


OK, so i have compiled a few pictures of the region showing where i intend to place certain things that are necessary for a real city to work.

parks, airports, malls, and military base. along with an extra. ok, i put the military base in there myself, cities don't need them to function, but bring growth and money into prospering cities.

ok, first i will start with the extra pic i was talking about. it is the direction of growth planned out. from there we will let natural growth take hold, but to build up the city to the point of natural growth, i have to layout the planned growth.

they all stem from downtown, circled in yellow, and uptown, circled in blue/purple. where the line ends, the growth and density fizzles out as it goes down that line.

all growth is outward from downtown.

next, the military base location

next, the locations of the malls

next, the location of the airport, international airport

next and last are major parks in the region, smaller ones will be built accordingly

some of this stuffs placement is tentative depending on growth and future plans and adjustments i might make, but i will keep you up to date!



A wonderful update, RON-E! Great work! :thumbsup:


That's quite an interesting region. I like how you plan the sprawl from downtown - complete with malls and parks. Cool  :thumbsup:
Check my MD:               


Really looking forward to seeing how you develope like this.  Love all the planning and realism going into it so far.  I always tried to pay attention to the spacing of cities and such things in relation to real life when building and planning regions(back when I had time to actually play the game instead of mod it &Thk/() so I really like the approach.

And the roads so far are just cool(and awefully anti-gird :thumbsup:)



Nice start Ron-e

I like to build highways and railways first too - gives a send of "direction" to the region.  I'm looking forward to seeing this one grow - good luck.


definetely the smart thing to do, like others have said, it kind of gives what you build a sense of place. In simcity it seems like cities turn out unrealistic looking because things don't really have any reason to their placement
War Kittens !?


There is a new update coming soon! RL has gotten in the way this week. I am going on vacation next week from work and will have 11 days to tinker with the city and layout all the transit. That is what I have been working on, laying out all the transit and major developments that are common in cities.

Before I make any city, i go thru my plugins folder and see what i have downloaded. Then I make a list of all the major developments i want in the city, where i want them to be, then i make them in the region, then let the development happen naturally around them.

Here is my list for this region :

  • Freight Yard
  • CR Yard (in distant future when popualtion garners it)
  • Bus System
  • Greenways
  • Large Parks
  • BRT and LRT (in distant future when popualtion garners it)
  • Tollway
  • International Airport
  • Regional Airport
  • Power Facilities
  • Water Facilities
  • Jail
  • Fire Airport
  • Universities
  • Colleges
  • Schools
  • Aquarium
  • Medical Center
  • Marinas
  • Baseball Stadium
  • Army Base
  • Zoo
  • Malls
  • Suburban Office Parks
  • Farms
  • Bikeway
  • Golf Courses
  • Theme Park
  • Water Park
  • Cemetaries


the long awaited street update. i have begun to layout some of the streets and avenues, etc in the region. click on the images for larger views. be warned, they are large images!


Wow, great start, looks like you've got this one thoroughly planned out. This should develop very nicely if you stick to your plan (and probably even when you don't). Your street layout looks great too, neither too repetitive nor too random. Looking forward to seeing this one develop further.



I agree with Fred : you have great plans!  Your region map is great, it will be joy to follow you deveopping this area  :satisfied:
Check my MD:               


Hey Ron love your plan of attack on the region while you got time to play lol... Cant wait to see your plans in action here... - pat

Don't forget the SC4D Podcast is back and live on Saturdays @ 12 noon CST!! -- The Podcast soon to Return Here Linkie


That's a nice layout for the streets! Looking forward to the development! :thumbsup: