Libreburg a'Roulons (Albalian)
'Skyline' of Roulons
Motto: "Tulikah unt Raev Kaudi"
"Through Fire and Fury"
General location of Roulons
Independent (de facto)
Office of the Dictators
Albalian Raha (ALR, ₪)
Drives on the
Roulons, or more officially the Free City of Roulons, is a subterranean city constructed between 15 376 and 15 379. It is located somewhere under the Ifrenu Peninsula, on the planet of Vosgias in the Messier 90 galaxy. The idea of Roulons and cities like it were conceived many times throughout Albalian history, but only came to fruition during the Great Collapse. Despite being underground, Roulons and the area around it has its own weather patterns, which were added by the city's designers to make people feel more at ease. Around one-third of the city's area is composed of forests, parks, gardens, rivers, canals and lakes.
Roulons's economy is primarily based off of the private sector, the vast majority of that being retail. Despite technically being in isolation, trade is a valuable source of income for Roulons as there are numerous cities on the surface, inhabited by the planet's natives. Roulons is, despite its newness, a beacon of education, politics, science and military power when compared to the cities which neighbour it. The city has a robust maglev and road network, allowing for short travel times to anywhere within the city. There are no plans to expand this network to its neighbours.
The city of Roulons is located in an immense natural cavern, approximately three kilometres beneath the planet's surface. The cave was created as a result of a number of underground rivers corroding the rock over millions of years. Eventually, this resulted in a gigantic lake. The cavern and the lake continued to grow over thousands of years until it was around the size of Scotland. Approximately 3.1 million years ago, an asteroid 12 kilometres in diameter struck the planet, causing an extinction event similar to the one that wiped out Earth's dinosaurs; one of the many effects of this impact was an earthquake with a magnitude of 12.1, which caused the total collapse of most of the cavern. The water within was forced upwards through cracks in the rock, creating an event resembling a volcanic eruption with water.
Magma cooled over and within these cracks over the following years, leaving the cavern completely separated from the outside world. Soil had, however, seeped into the cavern through these cracks before they disappeared - this, along with what little water remained, meant that hardy natural life could make a home there. Small grasslands and even trees eventually began to emerge. The Albalians discovered this cavern when they landed on the planet in 14 831 CE - the cavern was named 'Roulons', after the crew of the ship that discovered it. Despite sending some scientists to explore and study the cave, the Albalians did not take any further action.
Roulons was considered by the Albalian government to be a very good candidate for an underground city in an official report in 15 316. A few research posts were already present in the cave, but the construction of a full city was decided to not be worth the expense. This changed when the Great Collapse entered its third year; the Albalian populations would need somewhere safe to live once the war was lost. The military government poured trillions upon trillions of rahas into projects like this one all across Albalian territory. The project in Roulons began in 15 375 with efforts to make the land suitable for construction, which itself began in earnest the following year.
Small Army units guarded the budding city for the next few years, and their engineer units assisted in construction. Roulons was originally intended to act as a massive military city which would be part of a wider network with the goal of rebuilding Albalian strength. This idea was scrapped shortly after construction began, and Roulons was to become a completely civilian city - albeit with an enormous military garrison and a strong production capacity.
To take full advantage of the cavern's space, buildings stretched right to the roof of the cavern and then began to spread from there, effectively doubling an above-ground city's capacity within the same space. With the change to a civilian city, the architects required plenty of green space such as parks and fields. Engineers began to terraform the cavern so that it could actually support these ideas; in addition, artificial rivers were created. Besides the aesthetics of these rivers, they were also envisioned as valuable defence lines in the event Roulons was to be attacked. As well as these green spaces, architects required artificial weather patterns. Despite this being a colossal and expensive project, weather patterns were soon established.
In early September 15 377, a permanent garrison under Komentaja (Brigadier General) Amaki nar Suurewie arrived within the city limits. Originally called the 381st Army, its name was soon changed to the 'Roulons Defence Army'. This garrison would eventually become the independent armed forces of Roulons.
By April the following year, a government for the city had been finally selected by the residents of Roulons. The leaders of the government, Suurewie and her protιgι Eskola, were named the Civil Dictator and Military Dictator, respectively. Today, Roulons remains totally isolated from everything outside the planet; the only outsiders that know of Roulons and its location are the natives of the planet.
The cave, which bears the same name as the city, is one of the largest natural caves that has ever been discovered by the Albalians. Its natural height, from floor to ceiling, is on average 530 metres tall and it has a surface area of 3118.3 km2. The volume of the cave is approximately 1,652,699,000 m3. However, the cavern has been expanding as a result of Albalian interference; it is estimated that the surface area has increased by around 5.6% since the Albalians began to expand the cave outwards.
By way of natural features, the cave has none save for a few pre-existing patches of grassland. With the Albalian terraforming efforts, much more greenery was since introduced. 31% (512,336,690 m2) of the city itself is, in some way, a green space. Many of these spaces are simply massive fields, though plenty others are devoted to specialised purposes such as parks and communal gardens. Several large rivers also flow through the city. How this works, being underground, is still officially a mystery, but there are several theories. The most likely scenario is that when the river water flows out of the city and into the cave walls, it is filtered, cleaned and then sent back into the city by way of a different river.
These rivers are the main method by which the city is divided into different geographic regions; these regions are, more often than not, named after the river that flows through them. For example, the Odwielki river flows through the Odwielki and the Pilszny-Odwielki Districts.
While much of the inner city is heavily urbanised and industrialised, a huge portion of the city's outskirts is made up of farmland. Hydroponic and vertical farms make up a majority of plant farms within Roulons, though natural farming is still used for things such as cattle, pigs and other meats.