In Civilization: Beyond Earth, your cultural boundaries extend up to 5 tiles away from a city. However, the city can only work tiles up to 3 away from the city. You cannot build most tile improvements outside of your cultural boundaries, but it is possible to build improvements on tiles that are too far away to be worked by any city.

So my question is this: which improvements must be worked in order to have an effect? I know that Floatstone quarries, Firaxite mines, and Xenomass wells increase your strategic resource count even when not worked. Do any other improvements provide passive benefits?

  • Must a Dome tile be worked in order to provide +10 city hit points? What about its +2 culture bonus? If the +10 hit points does not require the tile to be worked, which city does it apply to if there are two equally-close cities? If it does have to be worked, does that mean that simply placing a military unit on an enemy dome will reduce the city HP, even without pillaging it?

    Dome description

  • Must a Biowell be worked in order to provide its +1 health bonus? What is the difference between "Provides" and "Yields"?

    Biowell description

  • If there is a distinction between "Yields" and "Provides", does it mean that a manufactory provides +2 production even when not worked, and another +3 production when worked? If not, then does a manufactory provide +2 or +3 production?

    Manufactory description

  • I can confirm based on my experience (in original launch version - haven't tested with any patches) that the Contact Beacon improvement needed for the Contact Victory condition can be built anywhere in your borders - it doesn't have to be on a tile worked by a city. It's not one of the things you mentioned in your question, but it seems related, so I thought I'd mention it. Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 17:24

1 Answer 1


You need to work the tile to get its benefits.

The difference between "provides" and "yields" is that provided resources are added directly to the city's yield when worked whereas yield is added to the tile (which could be modified further).

The only improvements which do not require working are resource upgrades (which still provide the resource if unworked) and victory-related improvements.

  • So does this mean that placing a military unit on a dome tile reduces the city's HP by 10 points, since it can no longer be worked?
    – BJ Homer
    Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 19:52
  • @BJHomer I didn't think of that- yes, it'd presumably work. So would pillaging the dome of course and pillaging is more fun. Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 20:16
  • I'm going to do a bit of testing to confirm this; assuming it checks out, I'll accept the answer.
    – BJ Homer
    Commented Dec 17, 2014 at 17:36
  • I've found that you have to work the Biowell tile improvement in order to get the health bonus, so I'm not sure if this answer is entirely accurate.
    – Zell Faze
    Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 21:42
  • @zellfaze That's what I said. Commented Feb 15, 2015 at 22:01

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