Something Different: The History of a Square in Ostrina, Antharia

Posted by stjur on 13 October 2017 in Romanian (Română)

Piața Gării, Ostrina A 3D reproduction of the Station Square (Piața Gării) in Ostrina, Antharia - made with SketchUp

You know this feeling when you see a beautiful cityscape and you really, really want to know what it looked like 100 years ago? Or is it just me? Anyway, here you’ll find out what today’s Central Station neighborhood looked like in 1850 and in 1920. Central Station Square (Interactive version here)

Of course, now y’all want to find out even more about these buildings because you’re all architects or urbanists and have a obsessive passion for historic architecture - nono, wait, I think it’s just me… (whining out loud)

Piata Garii numerotat

1- Ostrina Central Station (map) - built 1876 under the name Gara Dabijei (Train Station of Dabija), it became the new main station of Ostrina, as the old one from 1847 was way too small. Here you can look at the railway station from a better angle;

2- Hotel Dinamo *** (map) - today, here you’ll find a modernist building from the late 70s, but in 1920 you would have found one of the most luxurious hotels in the city that time - Grand Hotel Dabija Royale. Unfortunately, this hotel was open for tourists only for 7 years… It opened in 1918 and was bombed down by Gobrassian troops in the 3rd Antharian War in 1925. Gobrassanya, we love you. (That's probably what Dabija Royale looked like in 1920);

3- Șaussé Mall (also known as Șaussé Palas) (map) - it may look old, but it’s not. It’s a modern mall built in 1986 on a vacant lot. It’s facade should remind us of the old buildings that once stood in this place (the architect didn’t do a great job);

4- Twin buildings on Station Street (Strada Gării) (map) - they don’t really look like twins anymore since Myrcian company Citihotel decided to dye the left twin’s roof green, but the twins still get along pretty well. They were both built between 1880 and 1885, as part of the city’s modernization program. Here you can look at them from a better angle;

5- Fonciera Building (also known as Agricola-Fonciera Building) (map) - you know when you can consider yourself a failure as an architect? When you project a huge, fascist building in the middle of an old-styled plaza… That’s what our dictator Jean-Gheorghe Barraca decided to do in 1922 (This is what the building could look like today). Also, this building was placed in this exact location for a reason…

6- Cluceru Dabijei Church & Monastery - The one thing dictators hate most is probably God, that’s why the old church in the public square has been demolished in 1921. Believe it or not, the bell tower (clopotniță) of the church stood on the other side of the boulevard until 1960. The monastery, built in the 16th century, was already demolished in 1880 (This is what the monastery could have looked like in 1875, before the demolitions);

7- Dabija Vodă Market Hall - It was one of the very few market halls in the city. It miraculously survived the 1880 modernization program, being practically located in the middle of the square. Due to it’s deplorable state, it was demolished in 2002. Sad.

And, to make sure this User Diary entry is indeed the longest ever, here is a pic of a beautiful car parked next to the „Jurnal de Ostrina” headquarters, facing the Central Station:

White Mustang 'The day I saw your white Mustang'… And it had an Antharian license plate…

Sorry for this long User Diary entry, but I worked 12 hours straight for this small project and no one even reads them blikis. Also please comment down below what you think about this short OGF history lesson, maybe I should do this again? It only takes 12 hours, no big deal.


Location: Fântânele, Ostrina, Județul Abalia, Provincia Cadrilater, Antaria

Comment from eklas on 13 October 2017 at 13:33

Wow, this is so impressive! Also I think I've told you before, but Ostrina looks great too, the '3D' roofs are very creative.

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Comment from stjur on 13 October 2017 at 13:43

Thanks, @eklas! I'm trying to do my best :))

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Comment from bhj867 on 13 October 2017 at 14:34


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Comment from Rustem Pasha on 13 October 2017 at 14:58

Really impressive. I'm shocked.

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Comment from Yuanls on 13 October 2017 at 16:25

Damn that's some amazing work right there.

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Comment from mstr on 13 October 2017 at 18:12

Fantastic! Absolutely amazing!

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Comment from stjur on 13 October 2017 at 18:15

Thank you guys!

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Comment from Marcello on 13 October 2017 at 18:16

  • a lot


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Comment from Marcello on 13 October 2017 at 18:22


It should be 'plus' a lot. (like in '+') Darn renderer. In words then: incredibly well done, Stjur. This is GeoFiction at its' very best.


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Comment from stjur on 13 October 2017 at 18:26

@Marcello Thanks a lot! I know, right? the Markdown text formatting is sometimes a little confusing

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Comment from zhenkang on 14 October 2017 at 00:10

Amazing pictures! Instead of maps, we can have a glimpse of the OGF world in 3D

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Comment from Portopolis on 14 October 2017 at 03:17

Breathtaking. BTW I read all your blikis, just don't comment.

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Comment from stjur on 14 October 2017 at 06:24

@zhenkang Thanks! That's what I always wanted, to rebuild something from OGF in 3D, because honestly, I love anything in 3D.

@Portopolis I might consider writing blikis again, but I'm not so sure... I actually wrote my 3rd bliki already back in August but I'm not sure if I'm ever going to post it, because it's very long and because many things have changed since then...

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Comment from Luciano on 14 October 2017 at 09:25

I'm impressed, and a bit jealous, because I have no talent for that 3D render stuff. I guess I'll just have to imagine things that I've mapped, and stick to the things I do OK with, like my contours and such.

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Comment from stjur on 14 October 2017 at 12:30

@Luciano Well I don't see why you shouldn't give it a try, SketchUp is a very easy building tool (at least for me it is, I started using it over 10 years ago) and you don't have to make the buildings that complex, you can try something like this: SketchUp

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Comment from oneofbeatlefan on 14 October 2017 at 18:02

This is very inspiring to see. So awesome!!! Now I'm gonna try SketchUp after 5 years on a break.

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Comment from stjur on 14 October 2017 at 18:03

I'm glad I inspired you guys!

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Comment from Alessa on 14 October 2017 at 19:05

Excellent work, Stjur. It really brings this to life!

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Comment from stjur on 14 October 2017 at 21:15

Thanks, @Alessa!

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Comment from kingfries on 14 October 2017 at 22:15

Wow, thats amazing! Gives an actual idea of how it looked before and the urban renewal happening during different time periods. Really good

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Comment from stjur on 14 October 2017 at 22:25

Thanks! For me personally it was actually more exciting to create the historical maps and to write the history of the buildings than to build the plaza in 3D. I feel like most people are not very interested in the historical part though.

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Comment from Luciano on 14 October 2017 at 23:49

@stjur - perhaps I should have written more clearly about this: I was more impressed by your historical work than by the SketchUp. I try very hard to map in this historical style - though not so systematically as you evidently do. Most of what is best about Tárrases is because I adopted this approach, and everything I've done in recent times in Ardisphere is guided by this principle. I'm not very good at finishing things, though. The result is a bit amusing and disappointing, I'm sure: Comala is stuck at 1000 AD, while other bits are frozen in different epochs up to the present day, most commonly stuck somewhere between 1900 and 1940 or so, I guess. And I just took my capital - all of it - back to about 10000 BC. Reboot.

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Comment from stjur on 15 October 2017 at 07:04

@Luciano I remember you once said that if you could start OGF all over again, you wouldn't allow real world cultures. Well, I think it's not possible for human to completely come up with a complex urban evolution, which probably took many centuries, for his cities. I'm pretty sure that all people on OGF get inspired by real world maps. I passionately analyzed the evolution of the city of Bucharest, Romania the years before I started mapping on OGF - the 1850 map of the Station Square is 100% what could have been Bucharest in the early 20th century. My country's culture is clearly defined based on real world cultures: Romanian with stronger Turkish and Greek roots, influenced by the French pre-war period and the Italian 70s.

Tárrases is the greatest piece of mapping I've seen on OGF, not only because it's for sure the only finished country in the world, but also because, as you said, it's mapped in a historical style, respectively you can see which part of Tárrases is the old part without knowing that Viejo means Old on the map. I'm certain that this place is inspired by a real world location, I guess it looks a lot like a colonial town in Argentina or Brazil?

I always found your mapping in Ardisphere very interesting, yes, also Villa Constitución, but to be honest, the country's culture appears very confusing to me. When I first saw the country I thought it was the OGF Mexico, then I saw Comala and the Korean city names and I thought oh, Aztecs have been turned into Koreans in Ardisphere. Then I saw Arabic and another language I can't identify (Ynys Dieithriaid). It would be the most amazing thing to have a country where these four probably completely different cultures could all influence the urban evolution of the cities in a harmonical way, but sadly it's not very easy, rather impossible, because these 4 cultures do not coexist in real life. And creating such a complex new multicultural urban style is neither something I could try, nor something I'd want to try. You saw it yourself: Comala is probably only infuenced by the Korean culture, while most other cities and towns look like Central or South American settlements.

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Comment from Kazuya on 15 October 2017 at 21:43

Wow! I should start using sketch again! (I used it for a school project)

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Comment from Demuth on 16 October 2017 at 12:18

Can only really repeat what everyone else said: your attention to detail and history behind your mapping is top-notch, and I love your 3D rendering. Truly wonderful!

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Comment from stjur on 16 October 2017 at 16:53

Thank you @Demuth!

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Comment from Luciano on 17 October 2017 at 00:27

@stjur - I very much appreciate your comments. It's interesting that you view Tárrases as "complete" - if I had to put my own estimation on it, I'd call it around 50%. But then, it is my intention to do much more work on all the buildings - maybe not to the level of rooflines as you have done, but I want to record building-parts and number of floors. Partly this is because I intend to do a "full census" of the country - that is, I want to map all 250,000 residents, and where they live, because I want to work on voting districts and school districts and such things. Also, in fact there is probably not yet enough housing for the alleged population, so more suburbs need to be "filled in" in the central valley. Another thing I want to map is bus routes, of course, and many, many shops. Hence the number 50%.

Your confusion about the Ardisphere is understandable, but it somewhat depresses me, as I had hoped it was more clear and obvious. I know my wiki is badly done, anyway.

But just in brief: the Ardisphere is an immigrant country. The population is about 97% descended from immigrant peoples, similar to the US or Canada. The only truly "native" group are the Altazorians and their relatives, who speak a family of conlangs, with some influence from African, North and South American native languages. Comala, in 1000 AD, would be entirely native (pre-Colonial), and nothing to do with Koreans - "Quelepa" (the native name for Comala) speaks a conlang (Tlönian) and is modeled roughly on Aztecs or Mayans or Australian aborigines. The "Koreans" you see are immigrants, but immigrants who became quite powerful culturally and economically. Imagine if Uruguay had been taken over by Korean immigrants in the 19th century. There aren't really many parallels for this type of historical development in the real world - perhaps the closest would be a country like Singapore, which is in an originally Malay-speaking region, and had been a British Colony, but was essentially taken over by and dominated by Chinese immigrants. The Welsh you see (Ynys Dieithriad) actually has a real world parallel, in the autonomous Welsh-speaking communities in Argentina (wikipedia). Likewise most of the other language minority communities in Ardisphere are based on various real-world equivalents: the English speaking minority in Nicaragua, the German-speaking minorities in Mexico and Paraguay, etc. And I've added communities of various conlang-speaking groups as well. The map "shows" all these communities because Ardisphere differs from most real world countries in one key respect: it has a constitutional guarantee of the "right to your own language community" and hence places controlled linguistic minorities have their official names in the minority languages.

Anyway, to repeat - thanks for the detailed and thoughtful feedback, and as always, happy mapping.

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Comment from martinum4 on 17 October 2017 at 11:28

huh, i wonder if there is an import function for OSM-structured data into sketchup, that way something like the f4maps would be possible...

Anyway, your work looks really interesting, although i don't like your roof-mapping from a data-point of view. It looks awesome, but there's 3D-Buildings for this purpose, which enables consistent rendering for many data users, but unfortunately we have no renderer for that so i understand your decision to go for something that is rendered.

While researching for this comment i also found this 2.5D-Mapnik renderer, maybe we could implement something similar which just generates roof outlines.

Kind Regards


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Comment from stjur on 17 October 2017 at 12:35

@Luciano More details to Tárrases? Whoa, this is certainly going to look amazing!

About Ardisphere, I'm sorry if my confusion made you feel depressed, I didn't mean to. I think that this multicultural state could become something great and unique on OGF, but I just wanted to point out that it's going to be very hard, that's why I rather try to inspire myself by real world cultures and cultural mixes. I didn't read anything about Ardisphere on the wiki when I wrote my last comment, but I'm always happy to see when mappers don't just throw all kinds of cultures and languages together (like I did in Antharia's north-west, I'm certainly not gonna leave It that way), but actually have a complex backstory to every cultural influence of their countries. I also didn't know about all these minority languages in Central and South America, this is very interesting!

@martinum4 Isn't f4maps, osm2world and everything actually based on the 3D-buildings you've mentioned? So what does it have to do with SketchUp?

I know it's not really fine to use the wall feature for roof details, that's why I asked in my second bliki if it's "even OK to do that" and no one seemed to oppose (concrete evidence that "bliking" can't be taken seriously).

But would it be possible to create appart from OSM this extra feature, which renders like the wall feature but doesn't have a height or a meaning if OGF is ever going to be able to rise into the 3rd dimension?

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Comment from martinum4 on 17 October 2017 at 12:57

I was wondering if there is an OSM to Sketchup, that way one wouldn't have to do everything in sketchup again, as in importing OSM/OGF-Data into sketchup so that the buildings and their features (roofs, wall colours, levels, height...) are generated automatically based on the 3D-Building-Data, meaning less work when you want to have it in 3D (only refining, adding windows and stuff).

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