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I am playing with a friend and we started cities in the same region but quickly found that we really couldn't interact with each other because they weren't connected by road or rail. Services couldn't be volunteered. Money couldn't be gifted. Workers and students wouldn't commute.

We did notice that upgrades to the City Hall would affect the whole region however.

Besides this, are there any other bonuses one city can offer another within a region if they aren't connected? Is it possible to connect these cities somehow?

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marked as duplicate by Matthew Read, Kexlox, kalina, authenticgeek, Ullallulloo Mar 18 '13 at 16:54

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Is for this reason I rarely play the regions with 16 slots, as far as I know they are all made up of 4 sections made up of 4 connected cities. I think the region with 7 cities is the most connected map if you're looking for that (they are all connected). – mizipzor Mar 18 '13 at 9:28
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Cities that are not in the same "hub" within a region cannot share resources that require roads to travel such as power, water, and sewage. They also cannot share any volunteered vehicles for obvious reasons. They can however share workers, shoppers, tourists, and freight via an airport or ferry/cargo ship connection.

The above may be seen as a disadvantage, but there is actually one specific advantage to it, and that advantage lies in the sharing of utilities.

When a city has excess power, water, or sewage capacity, it is offered up to other cities in the region which have road access to it. This extra capacity is divided up EQUALLY amongst all claimed cities in a region hub. That means that the city of 5,000 people is getting the same share of utilities as the city with 100,000 people. If you are trying to create a very large city that gets its utility support from elsewhere, it is better to create it in a smaller hub of cities as the share of utilities it receives will be larger.

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If both cities are connected to a municipal airport or ferry port they should be able to interact with some limits. I don't think you'll be able to volunteer services or the like that require road connections, but your workers should be able to commute between them, and you can trade goods via the airport. Apart from that I'm not quite sure if there are any other means of interacting (other than via buildings that explicitly state they effect the entire region).

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