The City the Sun Never Sets On
The City of Tomorrow, Today!
|The Kodiak Republic
|Crystal City West
Crystal City North
Crystal City South
|Crystal City Council
|2,426 km2 (940 sq mi)
|795.15 km2 (310 sq mi)
|540/km2 (1,400/sq mi)
|• Urban density
|1,200/km2 (3,100/sq mi)
|• Summer (DST)
Crystal City is the provincial capital of Sjokalade, the province's largest city and the third-most populous city in Kodiak, with an estimated population of 1,740,000 as of February 663. The city is situated on the western coast of the Maxtopian Gulf, and spans 36 km (12 mi) from the coast to the foothills of the Ataku Hills, and stretches 72 km from Grovestown in the east to New Clynewood in the west.
It was established by railway magnate Charles Archambeau as a planned city in 467, in order to compete with the near-total monopoly that Robingrad had on maritime trade in Kodiak at the time. The original plans for the city, then known as Searton after Archambeau's late wife, were merely for a port and basic services and accommodation for the port workers. However, the city received significant support and interest from Duckburg, eager to establish a rival to Robingrad on the west coast, and it was thus expanded and renamed to Crystal City, although the name Searton survives, most prominently in the Searton Ward. Archambeau's touch on the city can still be seen in its tramway system, which is unique in Kodiak for its size and popularity.
In modern times, the city is known across Kodiak for its technological advancement, and is sometimes named the "Invention capital" of Kodiak. This is fuelled by the city council's focus on education, which is most prominently seen in the Knowledge Nexus, a hub hosting the Sjokalade Innovative University, Crystal City Technical Research Institute, and the Archambeau Library Service. The city is also host to the Sjokalade Industrial Polytechnic, and the Charntow Institute for Astrophysical Developments.
Due to the lack of easily accessible fertile land or fresh water to pre-civilised peoples, the site of modern-day Crystal City has relatively little indication of prehistoric human habitation, aside from the Reddin iron mine, now underneath the Crystal City Museum. Around 100, a small fishing station was established, but due to the lack of resources available without modern technology, the station was abandoned, and little evidence remains today.
For a century from the middle of the 300s the Archambeau rail empire grew hugely, as the largest player in the exponentially growing rail sector. By the 450s, Charles Archambeau, who was the head of the company at the time, conceived the idea of a planned city somewhere to the south of Robingrad as a strategic move to break the near-monopoly that Robingrad held over maritime trade in Kodiak at that time. The site was chosen as it featured a huge quantity of fresh water in an aquifer accessible through steam-powered pumps, and was completely uninhabited, aside from certain fugitives who hid in the nearby woodlands, including the notorious Ribena Hood.
Archambeau's original plan for the city was modest. Searton, as the city would be named after Archambeau's late wife, would focus primarily on serving as a port, with significant rail networks connecting it to the rest of the nation for easy import and export of goods. The city around the port would provide basic services and accommodations for the port workers, but the primary purpose was a city run by Archambeau to import and export goods and distribute them to the rest of the nation. However, the project garnered significant attention and support from Duckburg, who were eager to establish a formidable rival to Robingrad on the west coast, as well as alleviate the considerable overcrowding problem present in Duckburg at the time. As the funding from Duckburg grew, the project expanded substantially, and the planned city was eventually renamed to Crystal City, though the legacy of the original name persists, most clearly in the Searton Ward.
With the substantial increase in planned population, Archambeau was able to implement his most tangible influence on the city, its distinctive tramway system. First rolled out in 474, the tram network has since expanded considerably, and it is now the most-trafficked tram system in Kodiak. Due to Archambeau's links with the rail network, Crystal City's tram network is interchangeable with the Kodiak national rail network, as it was the Archambeau system that was eventually adopted nationwide.
The city features a grid system centred around the port, surrounded by ring roads designating an industrial zone, "non-polluting industry" and shops, and eventually residential suburbs. The central hub also features Crystal City train station, the largest in Sjokalade and the cause of the Crystal City green belt that was later created around the Crystal City spur of the national rail network. The hub also features various central government services, such as the City Council, and thus has slowly been progressively greened through the increasing growth of parks in derelict industrial sites. Due to the guaranteed population from Duckburg, Archambeau was able to progress with a far greater level of certainty when it came to scheduling the construction the residential areas, and thus they were all filled by 472, according to plan.
As more population gradually came to the city, additional suburbs were constructed. In 510, construction began on Manan, which was hailed as a revolutionary break from the traditions of suburbs in other cities. This new suburb was shaped like a miniature Crystal City, with a central hub of public service buildings, surrounded by shops, and then residential areas. With the increasing population, the port facilities were expanded to accommodate increased maritime activities, and the port's throughput eventually surpassed that of Robingrad's, entrenching Crystal City's position as the premier city on the west coast. Due to Crystal City's eminent success, it was awarded the title of provincial capital of Sjokalade from Feldade, which had previously been the capital since the establishment of the province.
Quarantine and modern era
Crystal City was hit especially hard by the quarantine caused by the Middendorffi Epidemic, due to the city's reliance on international trade. The city avoided famines like those seen in Rykkburgh due to the large amount of arable land in Sjokalade, but there was serious disruption to the operation of the city. Intense lobbying from the maritime trade unions prevented mass layoffs for some time, but around a year into the quarantine companies began to collapse altogether, resulting an escalating series of economic collapses that ended in an unemployment spike of over 45% by 538.
Looting and violence became commonplace from the starving poor, which was often met with lethal force from army units stationed by the national government to maintain order. In 638, the Inquiry into Government use of Lethal Force decided that such action was excessive, and led to the establishment of the Quarantine Hardship Fund, as well as the Crystal City Epidemic Memorial in Harmony Square.
By 540, the Great Interregnum had begun, and thusly Sjokalade was de facto autonomous in all its affairs. Due to the deteriorating situation in Crystal City, the provincial government moved the capital back to Feldade, and began a massive manual labour program in the province's farm to provide work for the large amount of unemployed people in Crystal City. Amicable relations were maintained with Kavergraith, primarily reliant on both province's large surpluses of food production.
Over the next several decades, Crystal City remained in a largely decaying state, but in 577 the Sjokalade government began investing in revitalising the city, due to the stabilisation of Kodiak Flu levels in the population, as well as a desire to reshape Crystal City as a "city of the future". This is what prompted the founding of the Sjokalade Innovative University, which was tasked with finding any way to increase food yeilds to strengthen Sjokalade's position, as well as decrease the mortality rate of the Kodiak Flu. Over time, this research yeilded significant successes, and Sjokalade briefly edged out the Eruestani Peninsula as the second-largest producer of food in the Kodiak Republic, thanks to Crystal City's work, and by 610 Crystal City's death rate had lowered markedly below what it was at the start of the quarantine. In total, the city saw the deaths of approximately 300,000 people to the disease, with an additional 20,000 people dying due to starvation, violence, or other causes.
In 628, with the end of the quarantine and resumption of international trade with Kodiak, Crystal City burst back into life. In order to fast-track the revitalisation of the port, the Sjokalade Industrial Polytechnic was formed, and the city was returned to its position as provincial capital that same year. In 655, trade throughput surpassed its pre-epidemic peak, and combined with the city's thriving innovation sector, it is currently on track to become Kodiak's secondary economic hub.
|Distribution of citizens by age
In 651, the date of the most recent DPBR, Crystal City's population was 1,319,680. In 665, the city council estimated the population to be at roughly 1,600,000. Crystal City's population skews towards a youthful demographic, with a significant portion in the 15-24 age range, reflecting the city's status as a hub for education and technological innovation.
Crystal City takes pride in its educated populace, with a robust educational infrastructure that includes institutions such as the Sjokalade Innovative University and the Crystal City Technical Research Institute. The city's focus on education has resulted in a well-educated citizenry, with a substantial percentage holding at least a bachelor's degree. The presence of research organizations and innovative hubs has contributed to the higher education levels seen in Crystal City.
|Distribution of citizens by level of education
|Highest level of education completed
|High school diploma
|Master's degree or higher
|Technical or vocational training
|No formal education