Recently I ran across a different sort of palace block. This block features six luxury palaces draped about a hippodrome. It was created by Brugle, who is a frequent contributor to both the C3, and the Heavengames forums. He is one of those folks who not only understands how to calculate a housing tile's desirability, but can also put the idea to good use. I vaguely understand how to do this, but whenever I try, my head starts to hurt and I have to go lie down in a dark room for awhile.
Anyhow here is his block which he built in Damascus. He cautions us that this block was designed primarily for the desert, and was built without the use of oracles due to marble being unavailable in that scenario. Some of the entertainment schools are located outside the block and are not shown here.
As noted, the above block is designed for use in the desert. It could probably work fine in other climates if some attention is paid to preventing the two central adjoining palaces from encroaching on each others turf. It seemed to us that, with some small modifications, the block could be made suitable for all climates. The block shown below is what we came up with. It should be noted that this nobody (to my best knowledge) has actually built this block yet. I intend to do so as soon as I get the time (God knows!). In the meantime, anyone who cares to is welcome to take a shot at it. Please let me know what happens.
Alan, a contributor to the C3 forum, has built this block in Londinium, and say it "Works like a charm". Here is a screenshot from that game:
Looks fine to me!