A City crane is a small two-axlemobile crane designed for use in compact spaces where normal cranes can't venture, such as confined steets, yards or within buildings. City cranes were developed in the 1990's as a response to the increasing urban density in Japan. With more and more buildings cramming Japanese cities, it became necessary to have a crane able to navigate the nooks and crannies of Japanese streets.
City cranes are essentially small rough terrain cranes which are built to be road legal. They are characterised by having a short chassis, a two-axle design, a single cab, a slanted retractable boom, and independant steering on each axle. The slanted retractable boom takes up less space than a comparable horizontal boom would. This, combined with the short chassis and independent steering, allow city cranes to turn in tight spots than possible by other crane types.
The designs are a modern update on the British yard crane like Iron Fairys and hyster but with higher lifting capacities.
The modern roto-lift telescopic handlers offer an alternative at the lower lift capacity end of the market, with a lift height of up to 20m.