The central commercial and business district in Sterling City, the Racket is so named after its long and storied history involving organized crime. To this day, its connections to organized crime (The Vlast in particular) are some of the best known secrets of the city. The Spire is the most recognizable and visible building in the Racket. The tallest building in Sterling, its top floor houses the offices of Victor Art, the CEO of Roanoke Industries.
Widely known as the poorest and most dangerous neighborhood in the city (and indeed, the country). It is known for its high crime rate (1 in 9 people in the Harrows is the victim of a violent crime) and for its wide swaths of abandoned, burned out, or otherwise inhabitable buildings. Many large factories can be found in the Harrows, but most have been shut down as more and more jobs have been shipped overseas. This has only worsened the already poor economy and inequality that began during the era of Mcarthyism and white flight. Mercy House is located on the edge of the Harrows. Further in, various gangs and small-time criminals make their homes in the abandoned building and claim refuse-strewn streets as their domain. These criminals are some of the only ones in the city which can operate outside of The Padre’s reach. Though even here, many criminals pay his dues rather than risk his wrath.
The only piece of Sterling City’s history to have survived the year of Fire and Flood, the Cobble Ward stands as a testament to the varied cultures which all contributed to Sterling’s rich heritage. Walking down any of the winding cobble streets from which the Ward derives its name and you might find it hard to believe you aren’t in a small village in Germany. Cars are prohibited in most of the Cobble Ward, reinforcing this impression further. The Cobble Ward is home to much of the mysticism and strange spiritualism of the city. Old world bakeries can be found next door to herbal alchemy shops. For these and other reasons, this neighborhood draws more tourism than any other in the city.
The center of industry and blue collar labor in Sterling City, the docks have a reputation almost as seedy as the Harrows. The Vlast do much of their “ground level” work here.
One of the premier centers of higher education on the East Coast. The University has it’s grounds on an island at the head of East Lake. This island used to be deserted save for the single lighthouse. The lighthouse and the island upon which it rests have accrued more than their fair share of legends and spooky stories. Regardless, it has been the grounds of the university for almost 100 years. The university itself is renown for its ancient history, archaeology, anthropology, and literary programs. It is also renown for being one of the worst party schools in the nation, and one of the weirdest as well.
Roanoke Island is split between a state park, and a privately owned chunk of land. The Privately owned land is owned by Roanoke Industries and houses the corporation’s R&D and production facilities. It is usually referred to as The Enclave because it is largely self-contained and no-one can enter its high walls without good reason.