Ok friends, I can't take the pressure anymore so I re-upload this very old CJ of mine... it's unbelievable but I'm indeed still working on this city! So look out for the last decade of Hangetsu soon!
The history of HANGETSU 半月市, a city of the Ryū-jin nation. The city is situated on Kamaji Island 釜爺島, a small and once unimportant island in the south of Ryū-jin nation. Among Ryū-jin poeple it is known for its hot springs and a great variety of delicious food...
The first settlement is called Hangetsu Village 半月里 (hangetsu = half moon because of the shape of the bay) and will give the city its name. It is a fishing village and has about 6,000 citizens. It hasn't really changed in centuries, as the whole area is situated on the rural and less important island of Kamaji 釜爺島. However, the importance will grow in the next few years... here are 2 historic photographies of Hangetsu. The first was taken from a boat in the Hangetsu Bay, the second shows the village's first asphalt road along the harbor...
The second village is called Ruigenya 塁原野里 (the castle grassland) with about 7,000 inhabitants. It has been founded by the Yoshida family in 1294 as an administrative post on Kamaji Island. The Genya Castle 原野城 is in the center of this village, which is surrounded by forests and - well grasslands This photography shows the village right after the surrounding wall has been removed to make space for further development... (note the empty beach in the background)
The third village with a population of just 2,000 people is situated on the small Kamishima Island 神島, therefore just called Kamishima Village 神島里. The island is a sanctuary for Ryū-jin people and is dominated by a statue of Kin Isshō, their main diety...
In the 1880's, when all the other cities of Ryū-jin nation grew bigger and became modern places, the villages on Kamaji Island remained small and unimportant. To change this, the Yoshida family allowed foreign companies to settle down right next to the village of Hangetsu. Quickly the village became a small town with almost 35,000 citizens. Industries and manufacturies appeared and the living standard of the population increased - schools and hospitals were established and soon the village became a nice place to live and work...
An overview of Hangetsu around 1884...
... and a historic postcard from 1886, showing "The Quay", the new seaside quarter of the foreign settlers just south of Hangetsu Village...
... and finally an air view of Ruigenya Village. While the population of Hangetsu increased, the need of food increased as well and the fertile grounds around Ruigenya Village were just perfect for new agriculture developments...
Hangetsu has grown extremly in past few years. We're writing 1893 and about 2/3 of the Halfmoon Bay has been occupied, more and more industrial companies have been established and the population has risen to almost 200,000 citizens. This development has been noticed by the Ryū-jin Emperor; he elevated Hangetsu to the status of a city and the good food and the many hot springs caused the royal family to build a summer palace here.
Here is a little photography of the bay in 1893...
After only 5 years of construction, the Imperial Palace in Hangetsu has been finished in 1898. A whole new district has been built around the palace which was named after the Emperor's favourite occupation: 夏休み殿 - Natsuyasumi Den (summer holiday palace )...
Some more improvements have been made in the city like the Tenryū-Kōen Garden 天龍公園 (garden of the dragon of the sky)...
This is an oil painting of 1899 showing the city and mainly the new district from the plateau above the Hangetsu Bay...
And here is a picture of the new Hangetsu Square, right between The Quai and the waterfront with the also new pier... 12
By 1909 the population has hit the 300,000 mark. A new city hall has been built at "The Quai" and Hangetsu's first theater has been opened - all of this due to the presence of the new Imperial Palace. The citizens enjoyed a high living standard which made them even more productive Furthermore, all the villages around the city profit from the new developments and grow as well...
Here is a photography of Ruigenya's main street which has become famous for all the little traditional shops...
The village of Kamishima has strengthened its role as a Ryū-jin place of pilgrimage. The waterfront has become busy as the village is situated on Kamishima island and is only accessible by ferry from Hangetsu harbor. There are about 25,000 poeple living on the island now and the Ryū-jin government is planning to build a bridge to connect it with the city...
And finally a view of the city's expansion along the waterfront in 1909...
A fire destroyed 4 blocks in the south of historical Hangetsu Village in late 1901 and as the surviving people setteled down on Kamishima Island, there has been some free space now for the new and long overdue city hall. After five years and a half of construction, the new building's opening ceremony has been held in 1907 as a link between the historic village and the new settlements. Here are 2 pictures of the city hall right at "The Quay" taken in 1909... (you can hardly read it, but the inscription says "半月市 HANGETSU CITY HALL 市役所 8) )
As I mentioned before, another major building project was the construction of the Imperial Hangetsu Theater...
The people who lost their homes in the 1901 fire, built a new little village on Kamishima Island. The original Hangetsu villagers were fishermen and as the city grew constantly around their traditional homes, they found themselves in the middle of a thriving, yet loud and busy city one day. However, Ryū-jin are a happy people and so the newly established village had lots of pubs, bars and restaurants with many city folk visiting the village during the weekend. Together with the attraction of Kamishima Village (with the statue of Kin Isshō), the Kamishima Island Recreational Reserve was founded. This is a photography of the village from 1909...
After a constant growth, the city of Hangetsu became known all around Kitsune Planet. It has become a place of a continuously increasing wealth and economy. In 1913, the city was home to almost 500,000 citizens and the famous Burchard Line decided to make Hangetsu a stop for their huge and luxurious ocean liners. Here are some photographies of the "Mauretanic", the first vessel visiting the city in october 1913...
The Hangetsu citizens came to the pier and were celebrating the event...
These two pictures were taken during the departure of the ship...
By 1917, the city's first real skyscraper has been finished! The Hangetsu Kamaji Bank Tower (HKBT) was Ryū-jin Nation's tallest building with a hight of 180m! It is situated just south of "The Quay" and marks the beginning of Hangetsu's role as a financial center of Ryū-jin Nation. The very fast growth of the city caused a quick rise of land prices, and so building towards the sky just became the natural result...
The HKBT from the south...
... and from the north.
At the same time, trade between other Ryū-jin cities and even with other countries became more and more important. The city's port became a busy place and so the Hangetsu Harbor Board was established and moved into a new high-rise at the shore in 1918...
In 1922, Ryū-jin Nation's first observatory has been opened in Hangetsu! It marked the city's beginning of a place of knowledge...
This newspaper of 1927 explains itself
The Kamishima Bridge from the south...
An overview of Ruigenya and the Hangetsu Bay... (note the beach again )
The daily fruit market alongside The Quay...
By the end of the 1920's, more and more banks specialized in real estate speculation. They became influential and powerful companies and wanted to show their new wealth with skyscrapers. These pictures show Hangetsu's skyline in 1933 when ground speculation was at its climax...
By resolution of the Emperor, the Hangetsu University (HU) was founded in 1931 and construction of the main buildings began in 1933 in the middle of the fields on the plateau above the city. A whole new district was planned around the university buildings to house all the new expected citizens... however the prices for plots were extremely high...
In 1935, the 260m high tower of Hangetsu's branch of Karakura Savings Bank (KSB) has been finished as the new highest building of Ryū-jin Nation!
This picture of the late 1930's shows a bustling night life in the city... however the appearance is deceptive: many problems determine the citizen's daily life...
And finally a map of the city from 1939...
Building in Hangetsu has become extremely expensive - hardly anyone could afford it anymore... the growth of the city has almost stopped. In 1939, a war started between some nations of Kitsune Planet and the trade between Hangetsu and these countries collapsed. Ryū-jin Nation managed to stay neutral but at this time, fights started in the city between some fanatic people from these countries...
In february 1940 the fights got out of control: the police managed to keep city and citizens save but one morning, fights started in a factory in an industrial area some kilometers north of Hangetsu. Suddenly fires started to spread and the fire department couldn't control them anymore... then a chemical factory exploded and most of this northern industrial area was destroyed!
News spread quickly and soon there were fights and riots in other factories as well...
After a few days, fights and fires were defeated but Hangetsu's economy was in ruins. The war between other nations on Kitsune planet lasted for 2 more years and the city had to face very hard times... ground prices sank to almost nothing, people who invested in real estate lost everything, trade came to a standstill... The new district around Hangetsu University has never been realized due to the crisis and so the existing buildings stood alone in the fields for a couple of years:
Much of Hangetsu's industry and production has been destroyed during the fights. However, one small industrial area remained intact: the one on Kamishima Island. While the rest of the city's industry was being re-built, Kamishima Industrial Area boomed.
In 1938 oil was found just off the coast of Hangetsu but due to the disturbances it wasn't until 1945 that the first two drilling platforms were finished...
An oil refinery was needed and in 1945 the only option was to build it on Kamishima Island. The island's industrial area is situated on a small slope in the south-eastern part of the island right next to the famous Kamishima Bridge. With the construction of the refinery, "Shima Oil" was founded - the biggest and most successful company of Hangetsu back then, wchich became the motor for new development all over the city...
At the same time, a new port area was built, as most of the city's other ports were unusable...
Some pictures of the busy industrial area...
... and a total view of Kamishima Industrial Area with the new port and the oil refiniery.
"Shima Oil", Hangetsu's oil processing company, was very successful in the last few years and helped the city to come back to its former productivity... economy and finance have become stable again and in 1947, the once destroyed industrial area north of the city has been re-built - now more effective and with a new port!
In 1948, the Kamaji Automobile Factory was built in the middle of farmlands a few kilometers east of the city.
At the same time, an adjacent residential area was erected for some of the factories employees. Living there was cheap but it was also far away from the city center, so some shops, a school, and a small sports center were added to respond to the residents needs...
While some other countries were still trying to recover from the war, Ryū-jin Nation and especially Hangetsu were back to normal and thus very attractive for immigrants. The number of inhabitants grew quickly up to almost one million and soon the area around Hangetsu University (HU) was populated after being empty for over a decade. The university however has strengthened its reputation since the days it was opened in 1933 and well educated engineers graduated there. With the new developments around HU, new administrative buildings were needed. So the 1937 planned civic center was finally built and inaugurated in 1949.
View from the new civic center towards HU...
Hangetsu was one of the planet's most productive cities in the 1950's. The population exceeded the one million mark, the car and oil industries were very successful and the city's university was renowned for its education in technical sciences. So an international comitee chose Hangetsu to hold the first World's Fair after the war. As a first preparation, a small international airport has been opened in 1951. Before, Kamaji Island was only accessible by ship. The city's ports however had to be expanded constantly as they were almost ever at their limits due to high export rates, waves of immigrants and the upcoming tourism of that time, so the airport was needed anyways...
Some views of Hangetsu Int'l Airport
The low-budget hotel at the airport...
There was a new construction boom in the early 50's after over a decade without new high-rises. "Kamaji Automobile" built their new company headquarters, a 157m high building...
... and this is the 133m high "Shima Oil Building".
On April 12th 1954, the first post-war World's Fair, called EXPO'54 was opened. The 333m high "Hangetsu Tower" was built as the World's Fair's main attraction and became the city's highest building. Many new technologies were shown, like a new car series by Kamaji Automobile, different kinds of small electrical devices and a new way to produce energy by wind... EXPO'54 was a total success and strengthened the city's reputation as an innovative and productive place.
The official EXPO'54 poster, showing Hangetsu Tower, two wind turbines and a small ferris wheel in the new Expo Park...
The new exhibition building with Hangetsu Tower and the new skyline in the background...
Some impressions of the EXPO'54 and the park...
... and finally a total view:
In 1956, the City Port has been re-opened as the last one of the once destroyed ports of Hangetsu. Most ship traffic has concentrated at Kamishima Port and North Port, so the City Port didn't have to be as big anymore and some of its space could be used for new housing...
... and a new passenger terminal
A typical 1950's building near Expo Park...
By 1957, Hangetsu University has been enlarged to its final dimension. Some faculty buildings were added, student housings and a library...
Overview of the campus...
Some sports facilities...
... and a map of the campus. The following faculties are housed in these buildings:
Main Building: Law, Economic Science, House A: Civil Engineering, House B: Architecture, House C: Mechanical Engineering, House D: Electrical Engineering.
The economical growth of the city seemed to be unstoppable... more and more immigrants came to Hangetsu and even Ryū-jin people from other parts of the country. By the end of the decade, around 1.7 million residents were registered in the city! "Shima Oil", Hangetsu's biggest oil processing company, expanded and built a new big refinery at North Port - the area which has been destroyed in the 1940's fires...
The new refinery with adjacent oil port...
The refinery as seen from the new North Port Bridge, connecting the different parts of North Port Industrial Area and arterial road leading from and to the city...
View from the bridge towards the new container terminal of North Port...
Total view of North Port Industrial Area...
... and a top view...
In the early 1960's, an atomic war threatened Kitsune Planet. Ryū-jin Nation was still neutral and wanted to help solve the problems between other nations. They were for a peaceful use of nuclear power and after the quarrelling nations finally signed a treaty to stop nuclear armament, a monumental sculpture was built in Hangetsu: the Atomium! These pictures were taken shortly after the Atomium has been built in 1967...
Seen from the city's financial district, where new skyscrapers have been built...
Much of the city's shoreline has been covered with ports, buildings and quays by now but a small strech of beach remained. Here, lots of holiday resorts and hotels were built...
The Hangetsu Beach Plaza has become the most famous hotel in the city...
... and a final view of the beach. You can see the city's skyline from here...