Thursday, July 30, 2015

Capitol City Neighborhood Descriptions

[This is a set of short descriptions of the districts in Capitol City, Maryland, fictional site of my superhero campaign.]

Bayside is on the eastern side of Port Tobacco River, from where it widens into a bay south to Chapel Point State Park.  Bayside is the fancy retail district of the city, home of the Capitol City Yacht Club, and site to some of the most expensive high-rise apartments and condominiums in the city.  The district shares police with Riviera and these police consider themselves elite and privileged, which occasionally causes friction with police from other districts.

Bordered by Willis, Brickberg, Vale, and Monastery Hill, this neighborhood is the long-time home to the city's working poor and those working in the Medical Center.  Brandywine technically includes the Chinatown district, but the reality is that Chinatown operates independent of Brandywine.

A line of high-rise residential blocks along the border with Brickberg are informally known as Mudtown.  Unofficial city history claims these were built to block all sight of La Plata from the homes of the wealthy and powerful in Riviera.  Some rivalries die hard.

Home to the middle and upper management of the docks plus employees of the Burgess Creek Power Plant.

This district is full of brick-covered brownstones, giving it its name.  Originally home to the working classes, this part of the city fell on hard times in the '60s.  The district is now slowly undergoing a revival, with urban renewal starting along the border with Bayside and moving east across the neighborhood.

Retail and property flipping dominates this district, with small technology-oriented start-ups seeded into the mix.  Restaurants and bars of varying quality are found throughout the district, from old school dives to high-end micro-brew establishments.

Originally on the far eastern fringe of town, Chinatown was home to the area's early Chinese population.  The area's population grew in the '40s and spread to the neighborhood's current borders before running into Brandywine.  Brandywine claims Chinatown is part of it, but the reality has always been very different.

Docks, East
The East Docks are home to the city's heavier shipping concerns and the approaches are dredged regularly.  This district has close ties to the manufacturing concerns in Willis and several links to the main rail line through the city.

Companies that ship goods up and down the Eastern Seaboard are headquartered here or have major offices here.  There are also some light manufacturing concerns in the district.

Docks, West
The West Docks contains the city's two shipyards, light freight docks and warehouses, and recreational launches.  Those not wealthy or well-connected enough to be part of the Capitol City Yacht Club belong to the Goose Creek Water Sports Club, which is based in the West Docks.

Coastal shipping, ship-making, warehousing, and the Goose Creek Water Sports Club keep the West Docks alive and humming during the day.  There is also a nautical-themed nightclub scene along the border with Brentland.

Downtown has a hub of high-rise buildings centered on Rose Hill, where SABRE Tower is located,  and all of the city governmental offices nestled on the banks of Hoghole Run.

Banking, corporate headquarters, and insurance companies fill up the high-rise buildings.  There are many expensive apartment buildings and condominiums along with the retail infrastructure to support them.  There are also several 4-5 star hotels in this district.

Mcconchie is home to the working lower class on the west side of the city.  Many residents work in West Docks or the infrastructure support jobs (read: janitorial services) in Downtown.

Monastery Hill
Monastery Hill is the district in Capitol City where all the really weird stuff seems to happen. The people who live there are insular, mostly of Eastern European stock, and keep many of their old beliefs and superstitions.

As the district is adjacent to University, students at the University of Southern Maryland seeking very cheap lodgings rent rooms along the western edge of this district.  Periodically, teenagers from Turkey Hill make their way into the northern fringe of this district, mostly looking for a place to eat and to annoy their parents (and, incidentally, the locals).

Morgan's Corner
Morgan's Corner is home to the upper middle class, with the majority of residents working as mid- to upper-management in Downtown, Museum Square (in Vale), or University.

Pomfret is mostly residential and home to a mix of lower middle class and upper lower class working at the airport or in the city.

Riley is a mix of residential and commercial use and home to many middle-class subdivisions.  The people who live here work in a variety of jobs across the city, making use of the subway system to get to and from work.  The William G Harding International Airport is adjacent to this district, but separate from it.

Riviera is comprised of large estates and is home to the wealthiest and most influential people in the city.  Think of it as a very large gated community with its own bylaws and private security.

The only subway station in the neighborhood is also the headquarters of Riviera Security, the neighborhood security service.  Riviera Security mans the gated entrances to the neighborhood (including the subway station) and patrols the neighborhood in late-model electric automobiles that are quick and quiet (so they don't disturb the residents).

Turkey Hill
Turkey Hill is home to the middle class, including commuters to Downtown and University employees.  Teenagers here go into Monastery Hill to eat at the various ethnic restaurants, but usually just to annoy their parents.

The eastern edge of Turkey Hills is zoned as light industrial and contains several computer and electronics manufacturing plants, including those belonging to Futuretech Systems (sponsors of SABRE).  The western side is mostly residential with some commercial parks on the border with Pomfret.

The University District is where the University of Southern Maryland Main Campus is located, along with housing for the students and faculty, businesses supporting the campus and campus activities, and student-founded start-up businesses.

The area between Downtown, Morgan's Corner, Brandywine, and Brickberg, this mostly low-lying neighborhood is the long-time home to those working in downtown but not wealthy enough to live there.

A variety of businesses are found in Vale, including legal firms, detective agencies, the city power company, and most of the city's museums, found in the Museum Square hilly area adjacent to Morgan’s Corner.

Willis is home to the city's medium to heavy industry and a lot of the working poor on the east side of the city.  A strong anti-metahuman sentiment exists in this district.

Willis is the industrial manufacturing portion of Capitol City.  There are several railway spurs here, including a major one going into the East Docks district.  There are also processing and bottling facilities for a variety of products in the district.


  1. I'll try and get a version of the map up soon showing the locations of the neighborhoods, but it may be late next week.

  2. What happened to Mission? Is that considered part of La Plata?

    1. Yep, St. Mary's ended up back in La Plata. All of the districts east of the highway 301 were dropped, including Bel Alton, Newtown, La Plata itself, Warlinda, and White Plains. I also cropped off Bennsville-Middleton, but had to keep Pomfret.

      I added Turkey Hill, Morgan's Corner, and Vale and chopped up Bricktown to make Brickberg (I had too many "-towns"), Willis, and part of Brandywine. Brandywine also inherited part of Midtown - the rest went to Vale, along with part of Downtown, which is now exclusively on the west side of the Tobacco River.