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  1. Scenery Review : KPHL - Philadelphia International Airport by StarSim My first visit to a StarSim scenery was the impressive KSTL - St. Louis Lambert International Airport for X-Plane 11. This is the followup for StarSim in scenery, this time it is for Philadelphia International Airport or PHL. The scenery is X-Plane 12 compatible (features), but the X-Plane 11 version is included in the package as well. Philadelphia International Airport is the primary airport serving Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The airport served 9.8 million passengers annually in 2021, making it the 21st busiest airport in the United States. The airport is located 7 miles (11 km) from the city's downtown area and caters for 22 airlines that offer nearly 500 daily departures to more than 130 destinations worldwide. The PHL airport has service to cities in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, Latin America, Europe, and the Middle East. Most of the airport property is in Philadelphia proper. The international terminal and the western end of the airfield are however in Tinicum Township, Delaware County. PHL covers 2,302 acres (932 ha) and has four runways. Starting in 1925, the Pennsylvania National Guard used the present airport site (known as Hog Island) as a training airfield. The site was dedicated as the "Philadelphia Municipal Airport" by Charles Lindbergh in 1927, but it had no proper terminal building until 1940; airlines used Camden Central Airport in nearby Pennsauken Township, New Jersey. Once Philadelphia's terminal was completed (on the east side of the field) American, Eastern, TWA, and United moved their operations here. In 1947 and 1950 the airport had runways 4, 9, 12 and 17, all 5,400 feet (1,600 m) or less. In 1956 runway 9 was 7,284 feet (2,220 m); in 1959 it was 9,499 feet (2,895 m) and runway 12 was closed. Not much changed until the early 1970s, when runway 4 was closed and 9R opened with 10,500 feet (3,200 m). Philadelphia International Airport IATA: PHL-ICAO: KPHL-FAA LID: PHL-WMO: 72408 8/26 - 5,001ft (1,524m) Asphalt 9L/27R - 9,500ft (2,896m) Asphalt 9R/27L -12,000ft (3,658m) Asphalt 17/35 - 6,500ft (1,981m) Asphalt Elevation AMSL36 ft / 11 m KPHL - Philadelphia International Airport by StarSim Philadelphia International Airport sits directly on the Delaware River, situated by one of the most historically significant cities in the United States, as Philadelphia served as the nation's capital until 1800. PHL distance views on approach are really quite good... as the autogen is very condensed and frames the airport, the Philadelphia skyline is also nicely framed in the distance. In closer to the field, I like the texture feel in describing the ground, no 3d grass though, but the ground visual detail is very good. The Delaware River frames one side of the airport (X-Plane 12 water), on the opposite side however you can easily see the custom texture join, worse is over the water section as it hasn't been cut out, so the overall view is not very pretty on the eye? Another point is the George C. Platt Memorial Bridge is not represented either, the blue structure should have been highly visible on the Rwy 26/27L/27R approaches on the right, a big omission from StarSim to the area detail. There is the option to use custom mesh (e.g. Alpilotx HD mesh) or ortho-scenery (e.g. VStates) in the same DSF tile. You can do so by using MUXP. The necessary patch file and mesh data are both included in the scenery. Overall the scenery is well placed and looks very realistic in the X-Plane 12 environment. Philadelphia International Airport has six terminals, and ten concourses with a total of 126 gates. Non pre-cleared international arrivals are processed in Terminal A. American operates Admirals Clubs in Terminal A, the B/C connector and Terminal F. Terminal A also contains a British Airways Galleries Lounge as well as a American Express Centurion Lounge. Terminal D contains a United Club as well as a Delta Sky Club. A USO lounge is located in Terminal E. The airport layout is Terminal A (left), Terminal B-C, Terminal D-E and Terminal F (upper right), with nine concourses. Terminal A- Terminal A is split into A-West (concourse) and A-East Concourse. Opened in 2003 as the new international terminal, it is now home to American (domestic and international), British Airways, Lufthansa, and Qatar Airways. Admittedly, the StarSim St. Louis Lambert airport was only average in the terminal modeling, it showed. Here at PHL it is a very different story, in fact it doesn't even feel like it is the same developer style, as the terminal design is very, very good... the glass/windows are all very "shiny, shiny", but overall the layout from StarSim is excellent, I like it all very much. Concourse A-West is a very unorthodox design for a International pier, slab-sided and not much glass area, but well done here... Concourse A-East is more traditional and probably the most detailed and the most authentic concourse at KPHL. A East was originally the airport's main international terminal, is now used by Aer Lingus and American domestic and international flights as well as international arrivals for Frontier Airlines and Spirit Airlines. Hence the different look and feel, It looks excellent. The skylounge detail (it isn't a skylounge, but just looks like one) is traditional in style and the standout feature of the terminal. Roof detailing is very good. Glass is see-through and there is a semi-internal fitout, with just seating and mostly placed there for the external view. All gates have SAM3 (Scenery Animation Manager) interaction (plugin required). The airbridge detail is excellent, but no branding except for concourse D (Delta) and E (Southwest). Clutter around the ramps is again far better than St.Louis, and better arranged as well, but there is no ramp activity, or animated moving service vehicles. Landside Terminal A is very detailed, with arrival elements very well done and animated car traffic. Internally there are "basic" check-in areas, custom check points and seating. The Overseas Terminal originally housed all the international airlines at Philadelphia. It was opened in 1973 and the building was a converted hangar. It was later replaced by the Terminal A complex in 1991. Terminal B/C Like Terminal A, Terminal B/C is a twin concourse pier. Terminals B and C have 15 and 14 gates respectively. They are also the two main terminals used by American. They were renovated at a cost of $135 million in 1998, which was designed by DPK&A Architects, LLP. They are connected by a shopping mall and food court named the Philadelphia Marketplace. They are the oldest terminals at PHL, and the original facility was opened way back in 1953. Design wise Concourses B/C are identical... B Concourse doglegs left and C Concourse doglegs right, as in a mirror. Gate assignments for Terminals B & C are: American / American Eagle - Gates B1-B16 & Gates C17-C31. StarSim's design is very good, nice modeling and great detail with the well done corrugated panel design, certainly with the detailed patchwork roof. And the internal details can be seen externally through the shiny windows. There is the excellent "Welcome to Philadelphia" signage and the well done SAM long arm airbridge on ramp C17. There is a ramp tower above Concourse B, and the terminal frontage in glass is well presented... but there is this overall feel of a bit of a sterile environment, and not a busy, busy active airport atmosphere, airside is quite dead in this instance. Terminal B/C Landside is excellent, great detail, and the full arrival floor internally is represented. Terminal D In reality Terminal D shares the same Terminal building as E (or concourse E) like with Terminal B/C. Terminal D has 16 gates, and it was opened in 1973. The terminal was upgraded in late 2008 with a new concourse connecting to Terminal E while providing combined security, a variety of shops and restaurants and a link between Baggage Claims D and E. Concourse D has a slightly different (darker) window style, and corrugated paneling, but well done here. Note the clocks that are positioned above the airbridges, and yes they actually work... a great detail. Terminal D is home to Air Canada, Delta, Spirit, United and Jetblue. The complex detail between Terminals B/C and D/E is expertly done here, in the amalgamation of building styles, note the flags which are all nicely animated. The Terminal has a large dark green glass facade, not as shiny as the earlier facades and so it all works better, the same D (E) Terminal design is also reflected landside, and the detailed (design) is excellent. Terminal E Terminal E has 17 gates. It is home to Alaska Airlines (check-in only, departures from D6), Frontier, Spirit, JetBlue (check-in only as of 2022), and Southwest. It opened in 1977. Terminal E houses a USO lounge available for all members of the military and their family. Again you have a different pier style with Concourse E. It has a Semi-Rounded glass end with a circular light atrium above. Roof detail are image textures with 3d objects, but it works in detail. I really like the oversized large gate numbers with "Philadelphia" noted below. Although connected together. Terminal E is separated on the landside. Again the detail is excellent, with internal details and more over shiny windows. Terminal F Terminal F has 38 gates. The terminal is a regional terminal used by American Eagle and Contour Airlines flights. It includes special (set lower) jet bridges that allow passengers to board regional jets without walking on the apron. Opened in 2001, Terminal F is the second newest terminal building at PHL. It was designed by Odell Associates, Inc. and The Sheward Partnership. An American Airlines Admirals Club is located above the central food court area of Terminal F. Terminal F is sprawling huge complex, that would have any regional operator drooling at the mouth. I personally love these facilities, and this is a very good one to use here at PHL with any ERJ. Walk-on/Walk-off is excellent as are those usable lower set SAM airbridges. Internal detail is done as well on all the finger piers... Landside arrival is small as the actual terminal in central to the complex, note the huge ramp tower just for this regional aircraft area. Just south, and at the end of the terminal area is a very nicely done American Airlines regional maintenance hangar, very authentic with a tired worn facade. Landside Very impressive is landside. Each terminal has it's own designated carpark. Parking garage A-West, Parking garage A-East, Parking Garage B, Parking Garage C and so on... and each massive carpark facility is well represented here. Detail and complexity of the area is excellent, as a lot of time and effort has been spent here to get the visual effect right, and it works... The Philadelphia Airport Marriott between garages B and C is well represented, as are the excellent car-rental zones for Avis, Budget, dollar, National, Alamo and Hertz car-rental, all are well designed and laid out, there a few photo (car) burn-ins, but overall it is very well done The SEPTA Regional Rail's Airport Line service is also a featured highlight here, as the train is of high-quality modeling and it covers the whole of the scenery in action (in and out of all the airport stations)... impressed. Notable is that all road traffic signage is also excellent, and all individually created for that particular road sign... Control Tower(s) The AA “Hub Control Center” (Control Tower) has a dominating view over PHL airport, it is 22 stories, and 196-foot high. But, this isn’t the Federal Aviation Administration’s air traffic control tower. The FAA occupies a much less impressive tower across the field from this one. Instead, the tallest and largest tower at PHL belongs to American Airlines to coordinate the ramps, so with 70% of the traffic at PHL, American Airlines has quite the say over the airport... Impressive it is, as the AA Tower detail is really well done, note the rear stair windows. The FAA facility is buried over the other side of PHL field, and yes as you can guess in that the X-Plane "Tower View" is set on the wrong tower! Cargo There is a huge sprawling area to the west. It has three major areas in the "Philadelphia Cargo City" facility, "American Airlines Maintenance" and the "International Plaza" complex. Cargo Facilities at PHL are located to the west of Terminal A-West, directly adjacent to the airfield. Buildings C-2 through C8 make up approximately 600,000 square feet of cargo tenant space. Tenants include Southwest Airlines, American Airlines Cargo, United Airlines Cargo, Delta Cargo and FedEx. Set behind Cargo City is the large "International Plaza" complex, again very well represented here by StarSim. Further west is the massive American Airline maintenance facility, both buildings and surrounding areas are nicely and highly detailed. Across the field to the south boundary on the Delaware, is another huge cargo complex, this time it is for UPS Parcel Services. To the east, there is a small FBO (Fixed Base Operator) Terminal run by Atlantic Aviation, just really a receiving facility, but recently renovated! Notable is the missing areas behind the FBO. Here in real life there is a DoubleTree Hilton, Four Points Sheraton, Sheraton Suites hotels, Skychefs facility and another Fuel depot. So this significant blank area is highly noticeable on the eastern side approaches. Ground Textures The ground textures are very much like the real surfaces, because they are.... most of the textures are photo based, and it really shows in areas because of all the zaggy lines on the texture surfaces? It is sadly noticeable from the cockpit (cabin) and so not very authentic. In many areas hard lines have been overlayed the photo versions, thankfully this does help with the taxiway/runway context. That said, the photographic elements do make the surfaces look good in detail, and the surface roughness is quite good as well. As noted the in-field grass is photo, and looks really good, but no 3d grass makes it all very flat at ground level, another badly missed opportunity for making the scenery a higher graded environment. The grass edges are also quite noticeable in being all very straight lines. This is X-Plane 12, and so you have all the exciting X-Plane 12 weather features available here at PHL, but sadly they are not available in the X-Plane 11 version that comes with the package. Wet conditions, standing water, icy conditions and snow are all available, and are all excellent. But note again the straight or curved hard lines of the snow boundaries to the asphalt, not very realistic. Lighting I wasn't too impressed with StarSim's St Louis Airport lighting. Here again at Philadelphia it is also a bit on the average side. Approach and runway lighting is very good, as is the complex road network that surrounds the northern boundary of PHL. There is an over-reliance on small spot lighting in the scenery, so you get both lit and dark areas, right next to each other and no covering light spread. You can get away with small spotlighting with infrastructure areas like Fuel Depots and Carparks, but not for the larger active areas like the landside arrival zones, which are all very, very dark here. Ramp lighting is orangy dull, with not a lot of distance spread, and it is dark down there working at night? In a few areas the lighting does look highly realistic, like the Cargo City entrance, and the International Plaza window lighting is also more realistic as well But a lot of the window lighting still relies on that bland FlightSim grey look, including the Marriott Airport Hotel. Thankfully the logo signage is all very well lit. Car-rental zones are again a highlight, brightly lit, they shine out of the darkness... that said you could still add in a far more wider coverage area to cover the darker spots. Surrounding road infrastructure looks very nice at night, and the airport needed to balance into that extensive lighting better... Airport navigation signage is fine, but there are no ground reflecting lighting effects from the signs. _______________ Summary Philadelphia International Airport is the primary airport serving Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The airport is located 7 miles (11 km) from the city's downtown area and caters for 22 airlines that offer nearly 500 daily departures to more than 130 destinations worldwide. Philadelphia International Airport sits directly on the Delaware River, situated by one of the most historically significant cities in the United States, as Philadelphia served as the nation's capital until 1800. StarSim's first scenery was the impressive KSTL - St. Louis Lambert International Airport for X-Plane 11. This is the followup scenery for StarSim in Philadelphia International Airport or PHL. This scenery is X-Plane 12 compatible (features), but the X-Plane 11 version is included in the package as well. Philadelphia International Airport is a massive airport with six terminals, nine concourses with a total of 126 gates, and an extensive cargo area, so this is a substantial project for any developer. In modeling terms it is great achievement, as each terminal and concourse comes from a different era, hence slightly different style, and so you get a real feel for Philly airport in the scenery, the landside areas are also well done, with all the internal concourse areas visible from the external. All gates are active with SAM3 (Scenery Animation Manager) including the lo-riser Terminal F regional facility, Long-arm C17 gate and C gates have arrival boards and D gates have working clocks. West has the extensively detailed Cargo City, American Airlines maintenance and International Plaza complex which are are all represented. Landside is excellent with all the six massive carparks, and central Marriott Hotel included. Car-rental areas are extensively done and the highlight is the finely-modeled and the well animated SEPTA Regional Rail's Airport Line service, the UPS facility and FAA tower are also well done on the south Delware River boundary. Road Signage is custom and excellent. Minuses, are the average lighting, with too much reliance of spot lights, poor coverage and tone, zaggy image lines and burn-ins in the ground textures. Markedly there is a sterile feel to the ramp areas with no service traffic (plenty of traffic on landside). Poor texture blending (including textures over a lake) on the north scenery boundary... But my main beef is the missing awareness of the significant blue George C. Platt Memorial Bridge, which is not represented on the eastern approach to the airport, a few fuel depot tanks in the same area would not go amiss in for filling in a deserted Bellwether area on the same 27L-27R and 26 approaches. And the missing significant Hilton, Sheraton hotels and the Skychef facility on the north apron. Overall this is a significant representation of Philadelphia International Airport from StarSim, a few wobbles, but overall a very worthy and extensive scenery of this expansive scenery, certainly a huge step forward in quality and detail for the developer StarSim, and it all comes across as really great value for the price. Certainly a must have for any U.S. East coast network, and another great scenery addition to X-Plane 12. Recommended! ____________________________ Yes! the KPHL - Philadelphia International Airport by StarSim is now available from the X-Plane.Org Store here : KPHL - Philadelphia International Airport Price is US$24.00 Features: Accurate and highly detailed recreation of PHL Fully modeled interior for all seven terminals High-resolution PBR texturing for ground and objects Animated custom jetways, SEPTA train as well as road and airport traffic Realistic custom Mesh High-quality (3in/7.6cm per pixel) Orthoimagery Custom road network Accurate 2023 airport layout Optimized for X-Plane 12 and its new features (compatible with X-Plane 11 too) Requirements X-Plane 12 or X-Plane 11 Windows, Mac or Linux 4 GB VRAM Minimum - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended Download Size: 3.56 GB Current and Review version : 1.0 (May 19th 2023) Installation and documents: PHL is download of 3.56Gb download. There are three folders as part of the installation; KPHL Philadelphia 01 - Airport (7.64GB) KPHL Philadelphia 02 - Roads (2.20 Mb) KPHL Philadelphia 03 - Mesh (32.8 Mb) 7.65Gb is installed into your Custom Scenery folder, Obviously the "Mesh" has to be installed below the other two folders. X-Plane 11 compatibility file "Earth nav data" is included for X-Plane 11 conversion SAM Plugin - Scenery Animation Manager - Suite 3.0 or higher is required for this scenery Documents There is a supplied manual; KPHL_Manual.pdf 2 pages for installation and requirements ________________________________________ Review System Specifications Windows - 12th Gen IS1700 Core i7 12700K 12 Core 3.60 GHz CPU - 64bit -32 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - PNY GeForce RTX 3080 10GB XLR8 - Samsung 970 EVO+ 2TB SSD Software: - Windows 11 Pro - X-Plane 12.05r1 (This is a Release Candidate review). Plugins: Traffic Global - JustFlight-Traffic (X-Plane.OrgStore) US$52.99 : Global SFD plugin US$30.00 : RK Apps XPRealistic v2 - US$34.99 Scenery or Aircraft -none- ____________________ Review by Stephen Dutton 8th June 2023 Copyright©2023: X-Plane Reviews (Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions.
  2. NEWS! - Scenery Released - KPHL - Philadelphia International Airport by StarSim Philadelphia International Airport is the primary airport serving Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The airport served 19.6 million passengers annually in 2021, making it the 21st busiest airport in the United States. The airport is located 7 miles (11 km) from the city's downtown area and has 22 airlines that offer nearly 500 daily departures to more than 130 destinations worldwide. KPHL is the fifth-largest hub for American Airlines and its primary hub for the Northeastern United States, as well as its primary European and transatlantic gateway. Additionally, the airport is a regional cargo hub for UPS Airlines and a focus city for the ultra low-cost airline Frontier Airlines. StarSim's previous X-Plane scenery release was the excellent; KSTL - St. Louis Lambert International Airport by StarSim, Checkout the X-PlaneReviews review. Key Features: Accurate and highly detailed recreation of PHL Fully modeled interior for all seven terminals High-resolution PBR texturing for ground and objects Animated custom jetways, SEPTA train as well as road and airport traffic Realistic custom Mesh High-quality (3in/7.6cm per pixel) Orthoimagery Custom road network Accurate 2023 airport layout Optimized for X-Plane 12 and its new features (compatible with X-Plane 11 too) Images courtesy of StarSim ________________ Yes! the KPHL - Philadelphia International Airport by StarSim is NOW available from the X-Plane.Org Store here : KPHL - Philadelphia International Airport Price is US$24.00 Requirements X-Plane 12 or X-Plane 11 Windows, Mac or Linux 4 GB VRAM Minimum - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended Download Size: 3.56 GB Current version : 1.0 (May 19th 2023) ________________ News by Stephen Dutton 20th May 2023 Copyright©2023: X-Plane Reviews Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions) All Right Reserved.
  3. Scenery Review : KSTL - St. Louis Lambert International Airport by StarSim Truth be told. I haven't criss-crossed the United States that much. Atlanta, Denver or Albuquerque is about as far inland as I have got... I never even made it to Cincinnati. Why is a very good question as I have criss-crossed Florida repeatably. My main guess is that really good major city based payware scenery has been quite dire, as developers have kept mostly to the eastern and western seaboards. So I was interested in a MidAmerica St Louis scenery, as it could finally break my decade old dunk. KSTL St Louis is a first time scenery by StarSim for the X-Plane Simulator, It has been a 1½ year old project to bring you this Missouri-Mississippi River local with it's famous St Louis Gateway Arch. St. Louis Lambert International Airport, formerly Lambert–St. Louis International Airport, is an international airport serving metropolitan St. Louis, Missouri, United States. Commonly referred to as Lambert Field or simply Lambert, it is the largest and busiest airport in Missouri. The 2,800-acre (1,100 ha) airport sits 14 miles (23 km) northwest of downtown St. Louis in unincorporated St. Louis County between Berkeley and Bridgeton. In January 2019, it saw more than 259 daily departures to 78 nonstop domestic and international locations. Named for Albert Bond Lambert, an Olympic medalist and prominent St. Louis aviator, the airport rose to international prominence in the 20th century thanks to its association with Charles Lindbergh, its groundbreaking air traffic control (ATC), and its status as the primary hub of Trans World Airlines (TWA), and its iconic terminal. Originally a Naval Air Station St. Louis, it was a Naval Air Reserve facility that became an active-duty installation during World War II. In 1930, the airport was officially christened Lambert–St. Louis Municipal Airport by Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd. The first terminal building opened in 1933. After airline deregulation in 1978, airlines began to change their operations to a hub and spoke model. Trans World Airlines (TWA) was then headquartered in New York City but its main base of employment was at Kansas City International Airport (KCI) and had large operations at Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) as well as St. Louis. TWA deemed Kansas City's terminals unsuitable to serve as a primary hub. TWA reluctantly also ruled out Chicago, as its Chicago operation was already losing $25 million a year under competition from American Airlines and United Airlines. This meant that St. Louis was the carrier's only viable option. TWA proceeded to downsize Chicago and build up St. Louis, swapping three Chicago gates for five of American's St. Louis gates. By December 1982, St. Louis accounted for 20% of TWA's domestic capacity. Lambert's terminal was initially too small for this operation, and TWA was forced to use temporary terminals, mobile lounges and airstairs to handle the additional flights. After Concourse D was completed in 1985, TWA began transatlantic service from Lambert to London, Frankfurt, and Paris, hence St Louis became the central TWA (originally Transcontinental & Western Air) main hub and operations base. KSTL - St. Louis Lambert International Airport by StarSim The Lambert airport has four runways, three of which are parallel with one crosswind. The crosswind runway, 6/24, is the shortest of the four at 7,607 feet (2,319 m). The newest runway is 11/29 was completed in 2006 as part of a large expansion program. St. Louis Lambert International Airport IATA: STL - ICAO: KSTL - FAA LID: STL 12R/30L 11,019ft (3,359m) Concrete 12L/30R 9,003ft (2,744m) Concrete 11/29 9,001ft (2,743m) Concrete 6/24 7,607ft (2,319m) Concrete Elevation AMSL 605 ft / 184.4 m The "Gateway to the West", and the way west from Lambert Airport is flat, it is not the most exciting surrounding landscape, not helping is the broad blank areas that blend the airport custom scenery into the surrounding X-Plane default textures, and it gives the airport a sort of island feel, the darker inner field textures to lighter green default textures don't help either. The real airport surroundings has a lot of surrounding infrastructure, including long term carparking ,Hampton and Marriott Hotels that fill in the gap behind the main terminal areas. Looking at broad blank areas on arrival is not going to get you your real feel of the airport or the area. The Lambert airport has two terminals with a total of five concourses A, B, C, D and E. All international flights without border preclearance are processed in Terminal 2. Terminal 1 features an American Airlines Admirals Club and one of the largest USO facilities in the nation.Terminal 2 features a common use lounged operated by Wingtips. Terminal 1 Minoru Yamasaki was originally commissioned to design a new terminal at Lambert Field, which began construction in 1953. It was completed in 1956 at a total cost of $7.2 million, the three-domed design preceded the same terminals at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York City and Paris–Charles de Gaulle Airport. A fourth dome was added in 1965 following the passage of a $200 million airport revenue bond. This four-dome design is still highly visible, but the external infrastructure in concourses and buildings have snaked their way out of the building and have surrounded it. Terminal 1 contains 68 gates across four concourses, lettered A–D The quad dome structures (certainly the nice roofs) are really nicely done, and overall the terminal is nicely designed, lower textures are very nice and feel authentic, but the frames are a little model like... overall a great effort. Concourse A There are 15 gates on Concourse A, A2 - A21. A finger concourse and the building is nicely done. Detail is panels high and a brickwork sub-ramp access lower. The lower portion has built in access doors and the wider roller doors that are really realistic in being weather worn. This construction format is the same throughout all the concourses. I like the detail and quality around the terminals as presented here, it is well done. Glass is just a dark shade with a matt-reflection, and again really effective. Concourse B There are 10 gates on Concourse B, B2 - B16. A tree Concourse which are all walkon/walkoff with no airbridges. Concourse C There are 30 gates on Concourse, C1 - C38. A long finger concourse that is the main activity concourse at Lambert. Notable is that StarSim has used real world photo textures for the roofings of all the concourse areas, it adds in detail, but it also makes the custom modeling air-conditioners standout with no textures. The idea is solid, but needs more better co-ordination between the two elements for better realism and in this case the Air-Conditioners are of a more lighter sky-blue than the darker blue used here. Clutter is not bad in parts, but the more you move out to the end of the finger, the more the clutter is weaker... and the end there is no detailed clutter at all, where as an arrival point of view this is where you actually need the detail. It feels like the developer didn't finish off the detail and left it. At the end of Concourse C there is an LIMA PAD, a ramp holding area for arrivals. The layout is as sighted is well done. Concourse D There are 12 stands on Concourse D, D2 - D18. Concourse D is a very long finger connection one-sided concourse separating the two 1 and 2 Terminals . Most of the inner section is not used in the StarSim scenery with clutter hiding a few workable stands that could be available for use? Note Concourse D ends at the Airbridges, which are part of Concourse E. Terminal 2 - Concourse E There are 17 stands on Concourse E, E4 - E40. Basically Terminal 2 carries all the international flights as noted are used via Terminal 2, hence the BA (although the wrong ones here in Regional CRJs). Notable is that the STL release came with no correct parking gates (ATC Routes) for designation of the correct identification of the gates for Traffic Global and WorldTraffic. This can be fixed via a new apt.dat file file attached below. The same apt.dat will be fixed in the next update with the correct gate designations. Terminal Two is probably the highlight in the modeling of the scenery. There is some great lattice work and detail to be found here, and the building looks impressive, but slightly let down (again) by some untextured signs and bollards. A bit of trivia... One aircraft from the Missouri History Museum currently hangs from Lambert's ceilings. This aircraft is a red Monocoupe 110 Special manufactured in St. Louis in 1931, and it hangs in the ticketing hall of Terminal 2. The airport has also played host to two other aircraft. A Monocoupe D-127 hung near the eastern security checkpoint in Terminal 1. Charles Lindbergh bought it in 1934 from the Lambert Aircraft Corporation and flew it as his personal aircraft. And a Ryan B-1 Brougham, a replica of the Spirit of St. Louis, hung next to the D-127. Concourses A, C and E all have SAM (Scenery Animated Manager) Airbridges, SAM brings the usual high quality interaction to any airport, and so the system is good here. There is "Southwest" Airbridge branding on Concourses A and E, but none on C? Control Tower The very prominent 156-foot (47.6-meter) control tower was opened in 1997 at a cost of approximately $15 million and is placed central to the Terminal 1 facility. A very modern slab-sided concrete structure, it is well represented here. Tower View is set correctly, just slightly above the tower, so the views of all the approaches are really good. The radar on the roof is nicely animated. There is a "MetroLink" LightRail that runs between the St. Louis City and on to MidAmerica St. Louis Airport, a secondary airport about 37 miles (60 km) to the east. The LightRail stops at both Terminals, and it is well represented here and animated with the correct Metro livery, but although there are the correct pantographs shown, the corresponding overhead power lines are not displayed, so it looks a little odd. Inner Landside is very good, with a large short-term carpark dominating the drop-off area. It is nicely detailed but not finely so. Notable is there is some nice animated airport traffic, and the roads surrounding KSLT are also well animated. StarSim relies heavily on Lo-Res photo images for the base. Overall the images are very good, but come with a lot of burnt in areas, like cars, which are quite noticeable. Nicely done are the four animated flags that represent the Country, State, City and Airport. Northwest of the Terminal 1 is the "Airport Terminal Services" area and airport support buildings. These buildings have been faithfully reproduced and the area looks very good... ... but to the more Southwest StarSim has used only the photo element to fill in the area, it looks good... but in reality the area should have been modeled in to create an overall fill of the Landside. There are actually only a few prominent buildings in the zone to cover. The area is important as it represents the U.S. Marines and the U.S. Navy Operational Support Center and should be represented. More Northeast you see the maintenance area of STL. This area is the remnants of the older part of the airfield in the original Naval Air Station St. Louis. As during World War II, the St Louis airport was also a manufacturing base for the McDonnell Aircraft Corporation (later McDonnell Douglas, now Boeing) and Curtiss-Wright. All the old factories and hangers are still here, with also some engine testing bays thrown in and all now used by American Airlines (but are ex-TWA). Notable is the FireStation facing taxiway C NorthEast Over the other side of the field on the Northeast are three areas... A General Aviation apron area that is used by Signature Aviation, with nicely logo-ed three hangers and reception/adminstration building. Situated behind is the STL Cargo ramp... FedEx, Amazon Air Distribution and UPS are all represented with a nice bit of cargo clutter. The rest of the Northeast area is dominated by Boeing... Here the Aviation company designs and builds autonomous vehicles, develops space and missile systems, and builds the F/A-18 and F-15 fighters. Future projects include the MQ-25 Stingray, “the Navy’s first operational, carrier-based unmanned aircraft" will be based here. However only about half of the Boeing complex buildings are represented including the impressive administration building, as the buildings and factories continue the other side of the railway tracks, here in the scenery it is just another blank space (image upper Right). There is another large "Airport Terminal Services" facility facing Banshee Road on the north boundary (there is a noted General Aviation park area as well). The north area is well represented, but again missing the highly visible and large GKN Aerospace facility situated behind ATS, which is again a large green blank area. Notable is that at the centre of the field is the "Cardinal" VOR-DME CSX 116.45, and nicely represented here. St Louis City There is a St Louis Gateway Arch, but I'm not sure if it is part of StarSim scenery or an X-Plane default object, I think the latter. There is however no city skyline provided, which is shame as it can be seen from the Lambert airport. However there is a great CityX St Louis scenery package you can download (118.20MB) by Jaben42. The package includes the required Gateway Arch, Old Courthouse, SBC Building, Edward Jones Dome, Busch Stadium, Scottrade Arena, Union Station and many more. Lighting Overall the lighting here at STL is average. Approach lighting is nicely defined, and thankfully there are two different tones of lighting to separate the Airside from the Landside... the side expressways also do help in creating a lot of the Landside lighting effect as well. Not sure on how to do night window lighting? then just do bland grey... everywhere. Most non-active apron areas use just simply down lighting or spot lighting for fills, it sorta works, but overall it is not very creative. Some ramp areas are also quite dark, the worst point are gates C35, C36 and C38... black as night down there, so avoid? Ground Textures We are seeing a new technique here, lay down photo textures, then lay the Burnt-in ambient occlusion effect laden textures over the top, the results... mixed. The hard surfaces are actually very good. But the shoulders and a lot of the approach linage is very, very Lo-Res and even jaggy, that is courtesy of the photo images and not doing correct cover lineage... personally effective at a distance, but it is not very realistic close up. As shame actually, because the concrete textures are very nice and realistic, but jaggies at this close quarter just don't work for me. There are also burnt in images on some texture areas, and they shine as much as the ramps do in the right lighting conditions. Grunge and dirt is there, but not as heavy or worn that you would expect at such an old airport, but passable in context. There is no 3d Grass, just again Lo-Res field texture areas, the colour though (thankfully) is realistic. But overall it is a dot-matrix of a field view. Notable is that a lot of uses have noted the field at STL is far from absolutely flat as shown here, but quite hilly. Sure that aspect can be very daunting to a new developer, but it is also required to show the true elevations and folds of the field. Field Navigation Signage is clear and good, and look authentic at night, but there are no ground lighting effects from the signs. ____________________ Summary St. Louis Lambert International Airport (KSTL) is the first released scenery from StarSim, and the airport has been a year and a half in development. A significant MidAmerica scenery, STL has been home to a Naval AirStation, a wartime and current aircraft production facility, and also the past main base to the now defunct Trans World Airlines. A true American Airfield of some note. Creating a first time scenery or any Simulation project is a very steep learning curve. What starts out as an interesting idea and project, soon turns out to be a far harder idea to create and deliver. So assessing a introductory project is wrought with conflicts. The bottom line is that this is a payware product, so to a point it has to deliver a certain standard to the purchaser. So does this St. Louis Lambert scenery deliver? Well overall yes, but there is still more room for development that is required to fulfill the whole promise. The modeling overall is very good (Terminal 2 is excellent), but there are elements of non-textured items that should have been textured and stand out. All the Terminals and Concourses are represented and three come with the featured SAM Airbridges and two with branding, however a lot of Concourse D is unusable because of placed clutter on the stands?. Daytime windows are nice, but come with average grey lighting in the dark. There is a very heavy reliance on photo-textures through-out the scenery, it works very well from a distance or from an airborne perspective as they are of high quality, but looks very burnt in and flat on the ground, also most of the important runway language in arrows and markings are all very Lo-Res and jaggy. Lighting overall is also average, with dark ramp areas and an over reliance on a lot of down and spot lighting. My biggest issue with the scenery are the blanks of areas all around it, creating a scenery island feel. So Lambert it is not intergrated well into the surrounding built up zones as it is in reality. Important blank areas in infrastructure are also missing, directly south of Terminal 1, half of the Boeing complex and the notable large GKN Aerospace facility. There are no St. Louis City objects, but a good CityX download fixes that aspect. So the outcome is that currently this St. Louis Lambert International Airport is a "Very Good" scenery, but not the high quality one it could be, as there is still more work to be done. Do I like and would use KSTL Lambert... overall yes, as the scenery has a huge amount of potential, it just currently needs that extra 15% to deliver on the idea. ___________________________________ Yes! the KSTL - St. Louis Lambert International Airport by StarSim is now available from the X-Plane.Org Store here : KSTL - St. Louis Lambert International Airport Price is US$22.00 Features: Accurate and highly detailed recreation of STL airport and parts of the surrounding area High resolution PBR texturing for ground and objects Extensive custom HDR night lighting Animated custom jetways (SAM plugin required) Custom modelled and animated MetroLink train, car traffic and airport traffic High-quality Orthoimagery Requirements X-Plane 11 Windows, Mac or Linux 4 GB VRAM Minimum - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended Download Size: 1.3 GB Current and Review version : 1.02 (December 2nd 2021) Installation and documents: STL is download of 828Mb download that is translated into a 2.84Gb install in your Custom Scenery folder. SAM Plugin - Scenery Animation Manager - Suite 2.0 or higher is required for this scenery apt.dat file file attached is required to fix the non-data gates for correct identification of the gates for Traffic Global and WorldTraffic. You just replace with the same "Earth nav data". Earth nav data.zip There is an excellent CityX St Louis scenery package you can download (118.20MB) by Jaben42 to add in a great visual aspect to this scenery. Documents There is a "Read Me" page for installation and requirements ________________________________________ Scenery Review by Stephen Dutton 6th December 2021 Copyright©2021: X-Plane Reviews Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions) All Right Reserved  Review System Specifications:  Computer System: Windows - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit -32 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 1TB SSD Software: - Windows 10 - X-Plane v11.55 Addons: Saitek x52 Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose Soundlink Mini Plugins: Environment Engine by xEnviro US$69.90 : Traffic Global - JustFlight-Traffic (X-Plane.OrgStore) US$52.99 : Global SFD plugin US$30.00 : Scenery Animation Manager - Suite 2.0 - Free Scenery or Aircraft - None-
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