Trinity was the vision of architect and engineer Frank Harmon. He first had the inspiration for it during his undergraduate work at North Carolina State University (NCSU) in 2004. Designed to be a major hub of academia on the East Coast, the project immediately gained funding from various federal and state sources as well as (and more importantly) multiple private ‘philanthropic’ organizations.
In 2020 construction began on what was originally called University City. Several multi-national corporations tried to step in, wanting a huge piece of the construction and development contracts. Harmon refused, as his vision of the city was one built around ‘the freedom of thought, speech and personal ingenuity’ as he often put it; not one of ‘the greed and corruption’ of the corporate world. This started a political battle that lasted all of 2 months; when it was revealed that all but 2 of the private philanthropists who had funded the project; were actually organizations owned by the same corporations Harmon sought to keep out. Devastated by this reveal, Harmon walked away from the project and Marcus Littrell, an architect of some renown at the time, was hired by the new ‘University City Consortium’ to take Harmon’s plans and build off the original concept while keeping the project ‘corporate friendly’.
The project picked up speed, however there was significant push back from multiple grass roots groups who felt that this new consortium would take them the direction of many of the MegaTowns that were beginning to pop up in 2021. The concept of a massive metroplex comprised of various MegaTowns or arcologies as they were also called, seemed too corporate and corrupt for these groups. Seeking to find a way to silence these critics and keep the bad press at a minimum, the consortium passed all over sight of the project to the North Carolina University System. This was a un-precedented move and one that was met with great fanfare by the public and the organizations that fought against the consortium. Littrell was fired and Harmon brought back to shepherd his project to completion.
By 2032 a new public transit system called ‘The Hub’ had been put in place; linking the 3 major universities (NCSU, UNCCH and Duke) with each other, while bypassing many of the smaller universities in the area. New ‘Mega Campuses’ had been built around these 3 (the universities were quick to point out that they were ‘campuses’ and NOT ‘MegaTowns’) with satellite campuses peppering what was once known as the Research Triangle. 2045 saw the completion of the project and also the death of Frank Harmon, who had passed away in a construction accident while at the site of the new NCSU bell tower.
2049 saw the beginning of what was deemed Phase 2 and also the ‘Holy Trinity’ scandal. Marion Frost, an investigative journalist for the News and Observer, uncovered information that revealed a corporate take-over unheard of at the time. Taking advantage of the weakening federal government and the rise of corporate autonomy, the University City Consortium had in fact, not disbanded, but rather had taken over the 3 major universities in the area. They had accomplished this through the same means they had funded the original project and had laid the groundwork for this over a decade; beginning in 2010 when word of Harmon’s vision had gotten out. There was a massive public outcry and many questions went unanswered: Did Harmon know? If so…why did he return to the project? Perhaps he didn’t know…and if so…did he find out at the end? After all, his accident was a tad ‘mysterious’. The media had a field day for the next 2 years until the storm died down. It seemed that the most vocal critics were either disappearing or having accidents, while the media outlets were ‘coming to their senses’ and becoming supportive. After all…this had truly been in the best interests of the community!
In fact, 2052 saw University City renamed the ‘Trinity Metroplex’ and an aggressive Phase 2 of construction began that was finally completed in 2069 following the formation of the Southern Coalition and the completion of the Trinity Space Elevator. Phase 3 ushered in the construction of Trinity Station and was completed in 2075. This led to the metroplex as it stands in 2090.
The ‘Trinity Council’ that governs the city is led by the ‘Board’ which is comprised of 3 individuals, each being a representative of UNCCH, NCSU and Duke. 8 other representatives sit on the council. These representatives are chosen by the Trinity Charter Organization. These are the various smaller philanthropists (corporations) that invested in the development of the metroplex. There is a mayor who is elected by the general populace, but the real power lies within the council itself and even more importantly, the Board.
Trinity is very much a corporate city. All municipal services are corporate run. Though these corporations are bound by city laws, they are given a very wide berth regarding their operations, and their security teams possess the same level of authority as the Trinity Police Department.