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I remember when I was playing this last year I built a city with absolutely zero industrial zones, and no need for them. How do I do this?

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According to this thread you can absolutely play without building industrial zones. I think the key to it is as stated (bold is my emphasis):

"You can build fully functional cities where all the goods are simply imported from outside the map, having all your peeps working in offices"

You'll just have to make up for any of the industrial demand elsewhere basically.

Someone else commented:

"My current city is at 132K strong and with almost constant residential and commercial demand, with near to 0 industrial demand. Around 80% of all industrial buildings are already abandoned and the city keeps growing nevertheless."

So it seems you can either opt out of it and try to import to meet any demand, or there may just be minimal demand. If your sims are educated and there are less of a workforce for industrial jobs those buildings will be abandoned but that won't necessarily stop your city from growing.

  • Thanks, I will give it a go. Just gotta make sure my city access is perfect! – TCassa Mar 28 '17 at 8:00

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