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I've got a bunch of trading posts on the river and a bunch of settlements well away from these trading posts. To avoid losing land to quarries I've been trading for stone. The problem is that when I try to build anything, all the stone is concentrated in a single spot. It would go much easier if I could move some of the stone in advance.

I've got a similar problem with food. Some parts of my empire town are literally overflowing the storage with the stuff, and other parts are starving. How can I convince the townspeople to move the food where it's needed?

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I was really surprised to see this title on Arqade instead of StackOverflow. –  user2357112 Feb 24 at 1:13

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The issue with stone seems to be a "non-problem". Your problem as you state it is that your stone is mined at one location and used all over.

Your desire is that the stone be moved "ahead of time", supposedly because then the construction would be that much faster. The thing is, this doesn't make your construction faster, it would simply hide the cost of moving the stone to when you're doing something else.

Whether you move the stone ahead of time, or move it when you need it, the manpower required for moving x amount of stone from A to B is the same. Ideally, all your townspeople are busy all the time, so the time they spend moving the stone to a supposed "staging area" is time they're not doing some other task.

Worse, if the trip from the quarry, to the staging area, to the construction site is longer than the trip from the quarry to construction site, you're wasting manpower.

What you want to do is, when you start construction, set the building as top priority (F2 - 6 ). This will tell all available laborers to drop what they are doing and move resources to the building. Once that's done, the builders will take over and finish the job. This way you get the building done as quickly as possible, with the least waste of manpower.

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Resources will always be stored in the nearest applicable storage facility (barns, stockpiles, etc.) To avoid resource starvation in your outposts, you have two options:

  • Gather resources locally: Essentially, you'll be building a second town with this option. Unfortunately, this may or may not be tenable, given your stockpiled resources.
  • Build a market: Markets essentially share resources between each other and the town inventory and your citizens will prioritize nearby markets to pull resources such as food and firewood. Market vendors (citizens assigned to work at this building) will constantly go between storage facilities and other markets to shift resources. The more vendors you have, the faster they'll shift said resources.
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I do gather what resources I can locally (food, firewood, etc) but not all (e.g. stone and iron) can be because they're non-renewable. As for markets, they do seem to be able to shift resources, but they also require a colossal amount of manpower and only seem to serve a very small area... I find it hard to see how it could be feasibly applied across 30 outposts on the largest map size. –  DeadMG Feb 24 at 0:04
    
@DeadMG : Markets default to 15 slots for workers, but I find 1 or 2 workers more than sufficient for stocking a market for a few hundred citizens. –  walrus helmet Feb 24 at 0:10
    
Given the market's operational area, I'd be more looking at stocking one market per about 20 citizens. –  DeadMG Feb 24 at 0:25
    
Markets swap material between each other, regardless of distance, as long as they are worked. –  quillbreaker Feb 24 at 7:53
    
His initial problem with Stone will not be helped by building a market as stone is only used for construction, it is not something stored in one.. It would help more with the food but in this case it would seem like the additional vendors would be a better idea. –  James Feb 25 at 18:50

"Demolish" the stockpile with all the stone. Since stockpiles are free to build (except for clearing the land), all you have to do is remove the stockpile designation and the villagers will move your items to other empty stockpiles.

The food is more difficult. Food producers will always put the food in the closest non-full barn, and vendors will pick up goods (of all types) from the closest source. You'll need to stagger food producing buildings with barns and the citizens/markets that will consume it.

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Don't they always move it to the nearest empty stockpile? Demolishing every stockpile from here to destination would be quite problematic. –  DeadMG Feb 24 at 0:03

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