Crusher 495 has been around for more than thirty years in Redmond. Over those years it has been a restaurant, a nightclub, and a bar - but it has always been a place with no room for biases of any sort. It has always employed a large number of metahumans, particularly orks and trolls, and that has made it a target of various metaracists over the decades. It has been burned to the ground more than once, mobbed by racist groups many times, and been the target of more drive-bys than anyone can remember.
Today, Crusher 495 has expanded to cover most of the old buildings in this large parking lot. It is more than a venue for hard-thrash rock music and decent drinks. It also serves Kingsgate and the rest of Redmond as a sort of community center. Many of its buildings are set up to aid those who don't have anything, and its parking lot is the first stop for work trucks from out of the district every morning (a service those companies pay for, the entirety of which Crusher's management uses to fund other community-service initiatives).
There is no doubt in anyone's mind that Eddy Kosky and the rest of the Crusher's management are out to do something big: to turn around the Barrens, and to make peoples' lives livable while they do so. They are widely regarded as philanthropists, and even the harshest of the Barren's residents regard them with respect.
- The Crusher 495 Host: Crusher 495 has maintained a host since Crash 2.0 in '69. This host - which is not the establishment's business system - is an open-access host intended to provide a virtual space for denizens of the Barrens to educate themselves and gain experience in certain elements of the Matrix's systems that they simply can't access via the public grid. The club pays for a solid university library access that it offers free to its users, as well as providing a decent system for its members to take advantage of free vocational and academic training programs from a variety of universities. The users have also set up trading boards, allowing those who have extra to trade to those who do not in exchange for "system credits," and to use those system credits to buy other things themselves, effectively creating an internal currency good only within the host's trading board system.
- Bar & Venue: Built in what used to be an old ice skating rink, the Crusher has expanded to fill the entire building. The rink has been replaced with an elevated stage and audience space (including a roped-off mosh pit) around it, and bars on either side of the large space. It also has elevated floors that overlook the performance venue, with tables to give those seated there a view of the stage show below. There are also back rooms for rent to customers, back offices and storage areas for the staff, and in the upper floor, an extensive lighting and sound booth, a DJ booth for those nights without live performers, and a living suite that is used by the senior manager and his family.
- The Parking Lot: The parking lot is surrounded by barricades of all sort, all of them the strength and heft that will let them endure a high-speed ram from a vehicle. The only approaches are through two gates, which are guarded by security at all hours of the day.
- Apartments: Many of the staff of Crusher 495 live in onsite apartments as part of their pay. Though they aren't anything spectacular, these apartments provide regular utilities, safety, and protection from the elements that are no small thing in the barrens. Each of the buildings is two stories in height, with several one- or two-bedroom apartments on each floor.
- Community Center: The most recently opened of the buildings, the Crusher's community center provides safe play space for many of the district's kids, day care services for those parents who take work on the morning trucks, rooms for use of groups for meetings or even just shared movie space, as well as small classrooms where a number of volunteers teach adults and children alike a variety of skills. Among the skills taught is music - the management of Crusher 495 knows that music can be a means of escaping the barrens, so they provide opportunities for barrens kids to learn those skills in this environment. More than one big band performing at the Crusher has also been talked into dropping in on some of these classes to talk about technique or theory...or just to help encourage those taking the classes.
- Soup Kitchen: The soup kitchen is the only part of the compound that lies outside of the barricades, deliberately left open for easy access to anyone who needs it without compromising the site's security. The food served here is all soya and mycoproteins, but they are warm, filling foods that are largely out of reach for many of the folk who the kitchen serves. The kitchen accepts but does not require payment, and it is not unusual for those with the means to pay for several meals when they eat here, to help offset the cost of feeding so many others for free. Even despite this, the kitchen does run out of food at meals, so the parking lot outside of the kitchen often begins filling up with the hungry of the district, queueing up before each mealtime. By local tradition, the old and the young are usually pushed forward in line.