Welcome to Asimov City – A full, vibrant city with living spaces, restaurants, shops and cool architecture. A place where humans and robots live together. In this post I’ll take you on a tour of one of my largest builds yet!
In main the city is comprised of two levels. The lower deck is an underpass spanning the length of the city, from the harbour to Foundation Square. Along one side is access to the some of the shops and dining, while utilites and city infrastructure sit on the other side. You can see the view of the underpass from Foundation square in the larger photo below (along the right).
The upper level connects the city width-ways, with a residential area above the utilities section and larger business section opposite (above the shops and bars of the underpass.) This level also features a coffee-shop / snack bar on the pier overlooking the harbour.
The Array is the most prominent feature of the city, stretching high above any other structures. The purpose of the array (aside from adding a striking architectural feature) was to house the City’s central data core. Robots are pretty hardy, but accidents do happen. So, as the robot population grew, it was decided that a central data core with live link to every robot should be constructed. In the event of catastrophic damage, an up-to-date copy of the robot’s mind could be downloaded into a new body in the robot shop. More on the shop later.
To maintain communications and the ‘live link’ the array has a large downward-facing antenna. This ensures steady communication anywhere within the city and a strong signal within the surrounding areas. You can see the antenna below.
The antenna is designed to be aesthetically bold, with optical rods suspending the antenna off the edge of the array platform.
Next on our stop is foundation square, a platform that sits roughly level with the upper deck on the front edge of the city. Foundation square was originally designed as a generic port, but as the robots constructed city pods, the dock platform became redundant. As such, the robots made the most of the view and converted the platform into the Tron-esque architectural piece that is Foundation Square.
Residents of the city constructed specialised transport pods to enable easier travel away from the city. The pods are small, designed to be nippy and carry a single occupant. The floor orientation is reversed enabling the robots to stand securely.
To accommodate the pods a special dock was built, on which the pods can land and separate to open. The embarkation stairs are modelled after the portal platform from Tron Legacy. Below shows the docking procedure for a pod.
Once docked, the pod’s base separates from the cone. It then lowers along the mooring beams, giving convenient access to step in and out.
The docks are frequented by many travellers, so a nearby cargo area allows easy loading and unloading for larger dock-compatible vehicles, which typically float along side the platform.
For lighter travellers, a locker storage was provided. However, due to it’s proximity to the Milano Bar, it is mostly used by patrons for storing valuables and luggage while they have drinks or meetings.
Shopping & Dining
The first shop on the list, and the most accessible from the square and the harbour, is the robot repair shop located off the underpass.
The shop was originally made to be detachable, so that shops could come and go as required, floating off to other market locations or making house calls. However, the shop became an integral part of city life for the robots, so now occupies it’s spot pretty permanently. You can see how the shop unit would detach below:
The shop is a bustling hive of activity, maintaining the city’s population and also producing vintage models of robot. You can see two 28-class robots under construction below.
The shop also features and industrial-class (Mk-III) Mending Machine and diagnostic bed, both for servicing functional robots.
Located above the robot shop (accessible from the upper deck) is the ‘new town’ shopping district that housed a number of small, permanent units.
After storm damage these shops were vacated. A corporation took the block over under the pretense of renovating and leasing the units, but instead hid a secret weapons-development program for a military contract. These included sentinels, energy weapons and even a prototype DALEK.
Needless to say, the company got caught and was evicted following the escape of the DALEK prototype.
On the lighter side, the city features excellent dining options including the city’s highest building, the Milano Bar. Look closely at the colours and parts – you’ll see why it’s so named.
The bar itself contains three levels. The entrance on the lower level connects the bar to the harbour area and contains food & drinks vendors, along with a few standing tables. The next level features a games room and view of Asimov City’s main deck whilst the final upper level is semi-outdoors, with spectacular views of the entire city.
Finally, the Terrace Diner sits on the upper level overlooking the harbour, providing travellers with coffees and snacks.
Asimov City has two apartments within the City’s main structure, located on the upper level on the side opposite to the shopping area.
Other robots typically live outside the City in homes following the design of Fusion’s second home.
As for the two within the city, each apartment includes a recharge and backup chamber, Mk-IV repair machine, television with city monitor, home control and of course, a chair for guests. The apartments are quite compact, but efficient for robot needs.
Asimov City’s shops, dining, apartments and general infrastructure are controlled by an assembly of regulatory systems located on the lower deck, below the apartment area. The section provides electric, water, climate control and anything else the city requires. As such, the systems span the length of the city, from Foundation Square all the way to the harbour. Below, you can see power distribution on the left, with water purification on the right.
This area tends to be maintained by the human population, since the high power output and energy manipulation tended to interfere with robot functioning at very close proximity. As such, the robots could be near the equipment, just not directly service it.
Another key element of the city’s functioning is that of the antenna array. Obviously the main array and data core are generally inaccessible to the city’s population due to their height. However, the antenna could features a main control interface located at the mast’s base, in the plaza leading to foundation square.
The interface provided day-to-day diagnostic functionality and acted as data conduit to the robot shop. In the event of a fatal accident, a robot’s consciousness could be downloaded into a replacement unit, ensuring the population’s safety at all times.
Fate of Asimov City
Unfortunately the city could not sustain the large population and in time, was abandoned. You can see the video of Fusion, Red and Blue salvaging the array’s antenna and data core, with the city’s final moments below.