1. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    Dystopian Micro-city in a Stadium...

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by JJ_Maxx, Jan 21, 2013.

    So I was looking for a place to have a human 'sanctuary' in one of my dystopian zombie-apocolypse stories and decided to use a sports stadium. Large capacity, high walls and limited entrances makes it perfect to create a small city for survivors.

    So I went searching for the right stadium. It can't be located in a major city, because the zombie presence would be too great. Also, I had already placed some of my scenes in Chicago, so I decided to look close to there.

    I found Toyota Soccer Stadium in Bridgeview, IL only 12 miles from Chicago. It holds around 28,000 people and was specifically made for soccer and concerts.

    Closeness to Chicago means my MC could travel to the city easily on foot or vehicle to scavenge for supplies, guns, etc...

    Do you think with the size of the stadium that I could create a bustling mini-city? I figure I would rip out all the seats, erect small buildings with multiple floors and have the very center be a marketplace. The nicest buildings would be built surrounding the marketplace, and as you went further to the outside if the oval, the buildings and occupants get more 'run down'. So the outskirts of the stadium, in the nosebleed seats would be where your seedier population would thrive.

    Also, I was thinking that the 'Elders' of the sanctuary would have exclusive use of the PA system.

    Just seeing if my sizing is okay and what you think of the idea? Any glaring common-sense issues I missed?
     
  2. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    I've been toying with this idea for almost twenty years. I've always wanted to fortify a stadium with tiered living quarters, guard towers etc. The central gounds used for agriculture. The whole area outside is a wasteland full of violence and roving bands. Post-apocalyptic, but not a zombie world.

    My story was going to centre around a group of soldiers from a larger civilization far away crash landing in the city and finding their way to the stadium where they earn their keep (and keep their heads) by going back out and conducting a rescue mission for some missing inhabitants turned to slaves by the gangs.

    I can't help with which stadium, but it's a kickass location to fortify (if I do say so myself)
     
  3. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    Ya know, I didn't even think of the agriculture aspect of the natural grass. Hmmm...

    Here's a pic of the stadium, it has a lot of 'dead space' around it, too. (no pun intended.)

    8400684020_a17e8802d4.jpg

    So I think this is gonna be my city. Complete with beauracracy, crime and gangs... Wa-hoo!
     
  4. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    Yes, the dead car-park space makes it great for security. Clear line of sight and open Kill zones. It could also serve as expanded space for buildings and a town, like they did with castles and townships in the middle ages. Also, the agriculture in the centre isn't just because of the grass (they can use their own sewage for fertlizing) but it is an open expanse with lots of sunlight, so greenhouses, animal enclosures and even hydroponic setups can be built in a scale large enough to feed the inhabitants, if there are not too many.
     
  5. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    Stadiums work well for sewage removal simply because all the sides slope down to the center. I was thinking of a 'shanty-town' outside the walls, but they wouldn't have official protection of the sanctuary.
     
  6. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    I remember a role-playing game on PC, I think, or Amiga, based on Mechwarrior (it might even have been Mechwarrior), where there were shanty towns built outside fortified cities, and the inhabitants of the shanty-towns were hoping for protection from the city because the enemy would not dare approach. But if the city were attacked the people inside would completely abandon the unwanted masses outside their walls. There were two completely different cultures. The haves in the city and the have-nots outside.

    Handled well your idea has some serious legs.
     
  7. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    Yeah I just think the threat from the 'zombies' would be too imminent to be any place other than inside the walls of the stadium. Thats why I was going to make the 'haves' and the 'have-nots' be in the stadium, just in different locations. Besides, this is just the backdrop for my story and doesn't plat a crucial role in the plot, except that the sanctuary Elders get involved later and he has to travel in and out of the sanctuary quite a lot.
     
  8. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    It also reminds me of the Aircraft Carrier in Fallout 3.
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    You're asking these questions, but don't you think going ahead and exploring it through writing is the best way to discover your answers? Take a deep breath, and go for it! The problems you encounter will become the story.
     
  10. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    Sometimes it's both fun and constructive to brainstorm these things. We can come up with bigger, greater, and more interesting ideas with a little bit of banter; stuff we may never have thought of without a spark of inspiration someone else may provide. It's good to have a sounding board rather than just sit in a dark room all alone trying to come up with everything in isolation. Although with the internet that can still be done.
     
  11. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    Of course I could imagine the whole thing in my head. I do it all the time.

    But there could still be something I missed where my reader says, "Why didn't they just ________?" or "Wait, that doesn't make sense!"

    Like the whole premise of Lord of the Rings. Why didn't Gandalf just ask his eagle friends to fly Frodo over Mt. Doom and drop it in. The only enemies that fly are the nazguls, but apparently in the beginning of the series they only rode around on creepy horses. Would have saved like, 2 1/2 books.

    Anyways, yes there are things I like to keep sealed in my noggin, and other things that I enjoy brainstorming with other writers. ;)

    ~ J.J.
     
  12. jedellion
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    jedellion Member

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    Quick thoughts...

    City would be a generous term. You would run out of space really quickly. A town maybe.

    Agriculture, nowhere near enough green to both build on and grow stuff, so food would be a major issue.

    Points of ingress is a strength, but don't forget all the maintenance doors etc.

    Distance from food sources. Eventually you could be asking to food when fuel runs out... So how close are the food sources.

    My best thoughts for this kind of thing would have to be in the country. A castle...big one....one point of ingress, designed to withstand hoards. Usually near the countryside. Of course this does not work in the us.
     
  13. Salamander
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    Jedellion is right. The average family needs at least two acres to sustain a balanced diet year-round, and if you want a diet with meat its going to require even more space, so planting some corn at the 20 yard line is not going to cut it for food supply.

    Also, any kind of sewage system that didn't remove the waste to someplace outside the walls is going to cause a horrible smell and spread disease. Human waste makes poor nutrients for plants and is a fertilizer of last resort, even in third world countries.

    The analogy of a castle seems a good one. It is dangerous for the average person living outside the stadium, but realistically where else do they have to go? At least by staying close to the stadium they can be guaranteed of demand for the crops they manage to plant and wall off from wandering zeds.

    I hope that adds a few lightning strikes to your brainstorm. :D
     

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