Display terminal buildings

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Many of the different airports do not have the terminal building showing, only the loading ramps. How do I fix it?

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Ian Stephens (ianstephens) Captain
Ian Stephens is an expert on this topic. Read his bio here.

Hi there,

Thanks for bringing this up. It's definitely an issue that can detract from the immersive experience we all strive for in our simulated flights. The intricacies of modeling individual buildings, including terminal structures, in the virtual realm can be challenging, even for established software like Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 (MSFS 2020).

Firstly, it's important to understand the architecture of the simulator itself. MSFS 2020 utilizes Azure AI and Bing Maps to generate its world, creating the environments based on satellite and photogrammetry data. This works excellently for large-scale landscapes, but when it comes to detailed structures, such as airport terminal buildings, the system may struggle. [Photogrammetry (using photographs to measure distances between objects) allows the creation of detailed, realistic 3D models of physical objects.]

If you're missing terminal buildings in the simulator, there could be a couple of reasons, and likewise, a couple of possible solutions.

1. Check your Scenery Settings:

Sometimes, the problem may simply lie in your graphics settings. In order to display detailed scenery, your settings need to be configured correctly. Here's what you do:

  1. Go to the Options menu.
  2. Select General.
  3. Go to Graphics.
  4. Ensure that your Buildings setting is set to High or Ultra.

2. Internet Connection:

The simulator relies on a strong and stable internet connection to stream in all the detailed graphics. If your connection is unstable, it may fail to load in all of the detail, including airport terminals. Ensure your internet connection is reliable and sufficiently fast.

3. Third-Party Scenery Add-Ons:

When the in-built AI fails to properly replicate the airport terminal buildings, you might consider turning to third-party scenery add-ons. Many talented creators in the MSFS community develop these highly detailed, often very accurate representations of airports around the world.

However, be mindful when choosing third-party add-ons. Ensure they are from trusted sources and compatible with your version of MSFS 2020.

With the ongoing updates and improvements being made to MSFS 2020, we can expect the overall accuracy and richness of the virtual world to continue improving. In the meantime, I hope these steps help you enhance your flying experience.

Please don't hesitate to ask if you have any other questions. Remember, it's all part of the journey in becoming a seasoned virtual aviator!

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