Metropolis in the Movieverse is an eastern U.S. port city that overlays New York City - in Superman the Movie and Superman II, Metropolis is home to Lady Liberty and in Superman II, the twin towers of the World Trade Center are clearly seen. (The Metropolis car licenses in Superman Returns bear the nickname of the State of Delaware - The First State.)
Metropolis (according to SR)
East Coast US (according to SR). Although the car licenses imply Metropolis is in Delaware, on the maps created for Lex Luthor Metropolis appears to replace New York but Long Island seems to be missing. (Maybe it already sank?). New York City is also missing.
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The Neighborhoods of New York
According to DC Comics:
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According to the Atlas of the DC Universe by Mayfair Games:
* Metropolis: Delaware
* Gotham City: New Jersey
* Star City: far northern California
* Coast City: on 101 near Sausalito between San Francisco and Oakland [Now destroyed, but based on maps shown in the Superman comic book titles, seemingly moved to midway between LA and SF.]
* Middleton (where J'onn J'Onzz first operated): suburb of Denver
* Littleville (Robby Reed): Wyoming
* Blue Valley (Kid Flash): northwest Nebraska, near South Dakota
* Central City/Keystone City: a bit north of Kansas City, Central is in Missouri while Keystone is in Kansas on the other side of the Missouri River
* Calvin City/Ivy Town (Atoms): both in Connecticut near New Haven
* Dos Rios (El Diablo): 65 miles south of San Antonio
* Fairfax (2nd Dial H for Hero): suburb of Bangor, Maine
* Midway City (Doom Patrol, Hawkman): Michigan, just east of Sault Ste. Marie
* Smallville: Kansas, 50 miles west of the I-70/I-135 interchange on I-70. The population is given as 90,000. (The location appears to overlay Russell, Kansas which has a population of about 4,500 [2000 census].)
(The above information has never been officially recognized by DC Comics and has been contradicted numerous times.)
According to data from Daily Planet (unofficial site), Metropolis is 220 miles from New York City, 150 miles from Gotham City, and 900 miles from Chicago. According to my atlas this puts Metropolis overlaying Boston (or possibly 50 miles due east of Washington D.C.). If those distances are air miles, then 900 miles from Chicago puts Metropolis off the coast of Massachusetts, north of New Bedford.
New Troy (according to DC, post Y2K bug)
According to the Atlas of the DC Universe, Metropolis is in the mid-southern portion of Delaware. In Countdown to Infinite Crisis (April 2005) Metropolis is firmly stated to be in New York State. Other DC sources also place Metropolis in New York State. Superman the Movie clearly assumes that Metropolis overlays New York City.
Size: 415 square miles spread over three islands and the mainland banks of Hob's and West Rivers, divided into six boroughs: Bakerline, Hell's Gate, New Troy, Park Ridge, Queensland Park, St. Martin's Island. (New York covers 301 sq. miles and has 5 boroughs.)
Highest Point: LexCorp Tower Spire (1,500 feet) (DC canon, probably not Movieverse)
Lowest Point: Sea level, Atlantic Ocean
Time Zone: Eastern.
The city of Metropolis is divided into six distinct boroughs - St. Martin's Island, Hell's Gate, Queensland Park, Park Ridge, New Troy, and Bakerline - which are split into various neighborhoods. These six boroughs each have their own distinct personality and, sometimes, accents.
Of the boroughs, New Troy, which is made up of the Central Business District, Midtown, Downtown, and Suicide Slum neighborhoods, is the best-known and perhaps most exclusive real estate this side of London or Tokyo. The residents of the island borough have a distinct pride in their part of the city. The dark side of New Troy is Hob's Bay. The neighborhood that sprang up there became known as Suicide Slum during the onset of the Great Depression. While not the kind of place you'd want to wander through alone, some fine establishments and famous people have come out of there, including the Ace O'Clubs.
Central Business District: Often called the Heart of Metropolis, the Central Business District is home to many large conglomerates, including major financial institutions and businesses ranging from communications and service industries to technical companies and fashion and entertainment. There can be found the headquarters Eagle Oil, RAMCO, Brysler Motors, and Hawkes Industries.
Downtown: Dominated by the docks along Hob's River, Downtown replaced the Old City as Metropolis's major waterfront area. By day, Downtown is a bustling, thriving seaport, but, after dark, it is an area best bypassed by tourists. The rude bars and theaters that dominate its streets are suitable only for the thieves and smugglers who inhabit the neighborhood. The Hob's Ferry Naval Base is situated on the northeast side of Downtown.
Hob's Bay (Suicide Slum): In recent years city planners have tried to revert the area's name to Hob's Bay, seeking to bring about a revitalization of this dilapidated section of town. This area retains much of the squalor that made it infamous. Politicians decry Hob's Bay as an eyesore, due mainly to the 19th Century tenement buildings which still stand, albeit just barely, to house the city's indigent poor, the criminal element, and those lost souls who have disappeared through fate or design. The streets of Suicide Slum also teem with the homeless of Metropolis.
Midtown: Midtown is the glamor and shopping center of Metropolis. The bank of the West River, on which the neighborhood sits, is lined with summer homes on private beaches. Expensive condominiums, high-rises, and luxury apartments overlook Metropolis Park on the north side of Midtown. Some of the world's most expensive department stores and shops line Midtown's famed Fifth Avenue, which bisects the exclusive neighborhood.
Nearly as exclusive is St. Martin's Island containing the Uptown and Eastside neighborhoods. It is home to three theme parks, numerous public and private beaches, and the estates of many of the city's best known families, such as the Kensington compound. Several housing developments on the island have waiting lists stretching for 10 years or more.
The East Side: The East Side has the distinction of being the communications and graphics capital of the world. Originally the property of printer Gustav Grimes, The East Side is filled with steel and glass mid-rises that house many of the world's acknowledged geniuses of graphic and commercial art, architecture, and communications.
As exclusive as St. Martin's Island is, Hell's Gate is inclusive. Encompassing the neighborhoods of Tealboro and Senre Ville, Hell's Gate has been the site of tremendous turmoil over the years of Metropolis's existence. Residents of Hell's Gate are a stern type with a tough reputation. The population of Hell's Gate is made primarily of long-time residents of Metropolis. Some families living there can trace their island roots back hundreds of years - some have been living in the same houses since the 1800s.
Senre Ville: Senre Ville serves as Metropolis's resort area. This neighborhood offers a wide range of recreational activities such as fishing, swimming, and sailing. This area also has beach front resort hotels (some offering legalized gambling) and amusement parks that could rival Disneyland in size and diversity.
Tealboro: Tealboro gained its name from its pre-Revolutionary War participation in protests against the unfair tea taxes, when the citizens of the area burned down the warehouses of the East India Tea Company. Today, Tealboro is the site of Metropolis International Airport, which is one of the nation's three busiest airports.
Queensland Park, along the western shore of the West River, is home to the bulk of Metropolis's immigrant population and is divided into the Newtown, Mount Royal, Pelham, North Bridge, and Old City neighborhoods. Several ethnic neighborhoods have developed within the borough, including Little Quarac, Chinatown, Little Berlin, and Neo-Tokyo, a settlement of "technogees," former high-tech industry workers from Japan who left their country rather than face prosecution for their hacking activities. While recent news from New York, Gotham City, and Los Angeles would suggest that these diverse ethnic groups couldn't live in such close proximity, Queensland Park stands in defiance of that notion. On any given day, the ethnic neighborhoods of Queensland Park look like a melting pot of humanity. Visitors shouldn't be surprised to find a recent German immigrant eating beside a Thai national at a Neo-Tokyo noodle bar.
Mount Royal: Most of Metropolis's colleges and universities are located at Mount Royal, including the Metro University of Art (established in 1896), Metropolis Institute of Technology (1908), Metropolis State University (1817), and Nordham University (1842).
Newtown: Newtown has been declared a Historic District by the National Landmark Commission for its post-Civil War brownstone architecture. It is also the location for most of Metropolis's major museums, including the Dave Mauer Pavilion, and the City Museum. Once a crumbling neighborhood of rooming houses, Newtown experienced a major renaissance in the mid-1970s when young urban professionals began buying and renovating its rundown brownstone homes.
North Bridge: According to legend, North Bridge played a significant role during the Revolutionary War when local resident Peter Vernon delayed invading British troops by destroying their access to New Troy from the Metropolis mainland. Today, North Bridge is a thriving middle-class community situated around Vernon Memorial Park.
The Old City: The Old City was the location of the first settlement in Metropolis. Originally known as De Vries Village and later under British occupation, Elizabethtown, the area became known as the old City following the American Revolution. Though no longer the center of Metropolitan life, the Old City has been designated as a national historic site. It is a major tourist attraction for its many accurate recreations of the Colonial lifestyle, including its most famous attraction, the old abandoned waterfront, which has, in recent years, been rebuilt as North Street Seaport. The Seaport serves as the site for the annual Metropolis Fourth of July celebration.
Pelham: Filled with old, once-exclusive homes and small apartment buildings, Pelham has developed into the home for Metropolis's artistic community. In addition to offering large, converted loft spaces in which artists can ply their trade, it also features affordable housing to up-and-coming young artists and designers and is the center of the city's trendiest art galleries and clubs.
Continuing around New Troy, Park Ridge, and its neighborhoods Racine and Vernon, is Metropolis oldest incorporated borough, dating back to the early 1800s. In the city's beginnings, Park Ridge was the location of the city's upper class, as well as the summer homes of the elite society of America's Gilded Age, including the Vanderbilts, the Carnegies, the Waynes, and the Luthors. While the borough has lost some of its selectiveness lately with the opening of areas of St. Martin's Island, it remains a powerful and historic region of the city.
Racine: Racine once had the distinction of being Metropolis's haven for artists, but, with its discovery as an area offering good living spaces for low rents, it was soon overrun with the city's rising executive and business class. As a result, the living spaces were converted, rents increased, and trendy and inexpensive shops, restaurants, clubs, and apartments began to dominate. The artistic community began to migrate into Pelham. Today, Racine is nearly inaccessible to all except the city's most wealthy citizens - again.
Vernon: Vernon is a working-class community of single-family homes and brownstones. This area was named in honor of one of Metropolis's founders, Peter Vernon. A neighborhood known for the peaceful coexistence of its ethnically diverse population, Vernon is regarded as one of the city's finer middle-class areas. Vernon Plaza, the city's first enclosed shopping mall, was erected here.
Bakerline has been the home of Metropolis's middle class since the middle class became an economic classification. Within its neighborhoods of Lafayette, Hamstead, and Oaktown, the majority of Bakerline's population are white collar workers and others who work day to day in New Troy. For the most part, these people can't afford the pricey rent of a downtown apartment, or they want a little more real estate than a potted plant in an apartment offers. A solid, moral community, Bakerline is often heralded by the press as Metropolis's middle ground.
Hampstead: The "Beacon Hill" of Metropolis, Hampstead'a wealthy, old-money residents can trace their Metropolitan ancestry back to the earliest of the city's settlers. Located on the southern seaboard, most of Hampstead's stately old homes are nestled atop the hills and palisades overlooking the ocean.
Lafayette: Once a French-Canadian settlement, Lafayette retains the distinct flavor of its Gaulish roots. More like a neighborhood of New Orleans than Metropolis, the majority of Lafayette residents speak French as their first language. The area is famed for its French restaurants and French-inspired architecture.
Oaktown: Located on the far northeastern edge of Metropolis, Oaktown has traditionally been a neighborhood of immigrants. Though lacking any significant political power, the residents of Oaktown nonetheless have a fierce civic pride in their rundown neighborhood, keeping one step ahead of the forces that threaten to turn the area into a slum.
The Daily Planet Building: 37 stories, 542 feet (counting globe), 501 feet to top floor; built in 1921, rebuilt in 1994.
WGBS Building: 55 stories, 745 feet; built in 1964
Newstime Building: 66 stories, 894 feet; built in 1913
Old Shuster Customs House: 10 stories, 136 feet; built in 1938
Notes: Metropolis has multiple zip codes including 10022 which, in the Real World, is in New York City. NYC's zipcodes run from 10001-10040.
Additional note: the Kirby Mountains are north of the city and contain precious minerals. Westminster County is five miles outside out downtown Metropolis is known for its coal fields. Echo Canyon is outside the city in an undeveloped or wilderness area with a ranger station.
Daily Planet Guide to Metropolis, from WEG
Additional material from the The Atlas of the DC Universe, from Mayfair Games
Superman: The Ultimate Guide to the Man of Steel (Hardcover) by Scott Beatty (Author)