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FS2004 PORTUGAL VFR - The ultimate complete scenery for Portugal! (WIP)

Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hello everyone,

As I have finally got this project organized, I felt it was time to share with the community 'what's cooking' here in my FS9!

Portugal VFR will be an extremely complete and detailed scenery aimed at the 'low & slow' flying fans, that will cover the entire mainland Portugal territory.
This scenery will use the stupendous scenery "Portugal Terrain" by Luis Sá as a 'canvas' of sorts, which you can freely get at this link: https://www.ptsim.com/index.php/downloads1
My scenery will NOT work properly if you don't install Portugal Terrain first (but that will be covered in the installation manual too).

Planned scenery features to be included are as follows:

- Every airfield, airstrip and Air Base that exists in mainland Portugal, even some which have been closed in the last 30 years but that are still discernible in satellite imagery and on location somewhat, with 140 Civil airfields & airstrips + 11 Military Airfields (2 of them being joint Civil-Military use). The 3 major International airports LPPT, LPPR & LPFR might be included but are NOT a priority, as there are already a lot of great renditions, payware and freeware. All of the airfields will all have accurate taxiways, aprons and terminals/building placements, using official charts info & satellite imagery for this. Also many Heliports/Helipads I could find information on, with a total of 156. Terminals & buildings will be photorealistic/realistic models for the maximum number of airfields/heliports possible, with a few other Portuguese scenery developers sharing their creations with this project or helping build new ones.

- Portugal doesn't have water runways/aerodromes, but for all of you seaplane fans like me, I will create a total of 32 Seaplane bases, all fictional, 23 on dams/reservoirs and 9 in river mouths around the country.

- 42 Lighthouses on the coast, all faithful recreations of the real deal, many of which with photo textures. Models for these are created by me, sourced from 3rd parties or a combination of both. They will also be complete with lights at night which recreate (to the best of my abilities with FX editing) the real life lights of each lighthouse. An update on radio navaids around the country will also be made, with the additon of new stations such as VORs & DMEs.

- Lots of landmarks & buildings in the cities of Lisbon, Porto, Coimbra & Faro (Portugal's biggest cities) as well as many other around the country in other cities, towns and villages. These will include Castles, Palaces, Cathedrals, Monasteries, Hotels, 'famous' Office Buildings, Churches, Bridges, and many other buildings. Landmarks outside cities will also be added, with the occasional distinguishable or relevant for VFR approaches church/cathedral, water tanks, and even the Air Force's mainland 3 Radar stations represented!
An important part of these landmarks will be a great amount of Medieval Castles, Towers & Renaissance Fortresses scattered throughout the country, as many as possible with photoreal textures and accurate models, for a total of 160.

- All (and I mean ALL) Wind farms in the Portuguese mainland (exactly 2,624 individual windmills as per my latest research). Other miscellaneous obstacles such as antennae, masts and comm towers will also be added.

- Towns, villages or rural terrain close to an important landmark or an airfield will also be more accurately mapped than they were in 'Portugal Terrain' where I feel necessary.

- Harbours and marinas will also be given 'life' with the addition of port infrastructures and ships/sailboats static objects.

- Infrastructure such as powerplants, and other major industrial areas will also be rendered, together with new Motorways built since the creation of 'Portugal Terrain', as well as adding major regional roads missing.

- Official Aerodrome Charts will be included in the package, but more importantly I will create and include fictional charts for every single airfield in the scenery!

- I'm considering (as of Aug '20) creating a pack of flights with the purpose of showcasing the scenery, more on this later should I decide to pursue it..


It is indeed a MEGA project, and will probably take me a long time to complete as I am doing it all alone, but I am fully committed to it!

I also need help by anyone who has enough experience with Gmax or SketchUp, and might be interested in designing some buildings for the project! Most of what I need are castles. I will also post a thread in the 'Project recruiting' section.

And perhaps most important of all: It will be COMPLETELY FREEWARE!


Hope you are all excited as I am!

This thread will be updated regularly with news and developments on this project!

Also this first post gets edited from time to time if a significant change regarding the information above occurs along the project!
 
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Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hey everyone,

I started by creating the seaplane bases, and I thought I'd share a picture of one of them in the 'Barragem do Azibo', a dam/reservoir in northern Portugal I just finished. Specifically here: https://www.google.com/maps/@41.5762137,-6.8977272,17z/data=!3m1!1e3?force=lite

Parking spot at the pier, with numerous boats also docked. A small 'snack shack' as well as picnic tables on shore, and the small village of 'Santa Combinha' in the background:

Azibo.PNG
 
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Leo2789

Resource contributor
Here's an example of some 'easter eggs' you can expect to find in a place where there is a fairly important building in a small village/town near an airfield/reservoir :)
In this case, near the seaplane base I made for the "Barragem do Vilar", in the village of "Fonte Arcada" as well as there being a medieval tower there, there is a fairly important church for the region or a "Santuário" (portuguese for sanctuary) as its called. So I placed a photoreal model of a traditional portuguese church in its location as you can see below:

Vilar_igreja.PNG

It's not a model of the actual church at this location, but it is a model of a church i another town which is fairly similar, and gives the scenery a light regional/traditional touch in my opinion ;)
 
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Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hey everyone,

Just another sneak peek into one of the seaplane sceneries, this in the "Barragem da Aguieira" reservoir, one of the biggest reservoirs in Portugal, and a very popular water sports location in the region.
Close to the dam there is a somewhat fancy resort named "Montebelo Aguieira Lake Resort & Spa", which is where I decided to create the water runway, and so I made this scenery extra heavy on objects when compared to most of the other water runways in reservoirs, take a look:

View of the resort (recreation with generic objects) with its piers. Aircraft Pier startup location marked with a red circle
Aguieira_hotel.PNG

Final approach to the landing area or the 'runway' in SE direction. The snowy mountain in the distance is mainland Portugal's highest mountain: "Serra da Estrela", with its peak standing at 1993m (which has a restaurant and ski resort; the restaurant area will be recreated for this project in the future)
Aguieira_final.PNG

I'll keep posting pictures and news of the development!
 
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Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hey @darrenvox

Like I said in my first update post, I started by doing seaplane bases, but the scenery will include all airfields/airstrips, which will be 151 and are all real airstrips on land that exist in the country, as well as various heliports.
I also explained that since I'm a floatplane fan, and there are lots of dams with big reservoirs (as well as wide river mouths in the coast) in Portugal, I decided to create 32 water runways/floatplane bases in various places around the country, even though there aren't any in real life; so the seaplane bases are all fictitious, but are placed, for the most part, on/near existing harbors/marinas/piers for boats that DO exist! And they will indeed be for seaplane operations only, since there isn't any runway but the water landing area ;)

I simply decided to start by creating the floatplane bases, that's why you're only seeing pictures of those so far! After I'm done with the 32, I will begin creating the 151 airfields/airstrips (of which 38 will be improvements on those that already exist as default scenery in FS9), so don't get alarmed! :p

This is a HUGE project and it will indeed take some time to make. My rough estimate is that I'll have the complete scenery ready by mid to end summer, probably around August, EDIT:(currently at 3 years and counting as I keep adding stuff to do :eek:):EDIT
 
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Leo, would you mind, doing a new rendering for Lissabon Airport as well? Since the one from Aerosoft is now quite outdated and could use a new rendering.
Is there any chance of creating a new Lissabon Scenery hopefully in same or even better quality as the Aerosoft one?
 

Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hey @Airbasil

As I mentioned:
...
Planned scenery parts/packs to be included are as follows:
- Every airfield, airstrip and Air Base that exists in mainland Portugal, even some which have been closed in the last 20 years, in a total of 136 airfields (The major International airports LPPT, LPPR & LPFR won't be included, as there are already a lot of great renditions, payware and freeware), with accurate taxiways, aprons and terminals/building placements (though all will be created with generic or addon libraries, none will have photoreal buildings).
...
the 3 main airports LPPT, LPPR & LPFR (Lisbon, Porto & Faro respectively) won't be included, precisely because there are much better renditions (Aerosoft for Lisbon, TropicalSim for Porto & Faro are the best in my opinion, though all payware) than what I could ever do, since I'm no object/model designer; so if I did recreate Lisbon airport, it would be using default buildings or addon libraries at the most; no photoreal buildings like those you find in Aerosoft.

I might consider trying to update Aerosoft Lisbon's AFCAD though, to bring it on par with the recent developments the airport undertook, but that's something to think about after this project of mine.
 

Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hey marioc,

Thanks I'll give it a look :) , though I won't hold my breath, as FSX/P3D stuff usually has dds textures which aren't compatible with FS9.

As for progress, I'm currently swamped in school work so I'm moving at a VERY slow pace right now. I'm still on the water runways, though I've also started (and almost finished) road and railroad improvements in the country, which is essentially adding bridges to wide river & reservoir areas which were missing in PTT, as well as creating new Motorways and Expressways missing from PTT, as they were built after the creation of that scenery.
As always I'll keep updating this thread with the latest news!
 

Leo2789

Resource contributor
Thanks Bjoern!
But the models might still be FSX/P3D only no?
Ill give them a look anyways when I get the time (which is in short supply for me rn!)
 

Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hey everyone,

Just a quick update on why there's been no updates lol.
I've been busy studying these last weeks and so progress on the project has come to a halt. I do except to resume work in the next 2 weeks or so.
Also I'm almost done with water runways, about 10 remain to be created by now.
I have also completed a 'side work' which consisted on adding VTP bridges to all river and lakes in the country where roads cross them. This is because Portugal Terrain simply had a VTP line as a road crossing these water bodies, which was somewhat dull; so I decided to fix this issue and all inland water bodies now have proper bridges crossing them ;)

I will post a new update as soon as I've restarted work in this, accompanied by new snapshots!
 

Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hello everybody! Well I'm back and I bring some more snapshots, this time of a 'special' seaplane base, as this one includes in the nearby village a representation of a famous medieval tower rebuilt by the Knights Templar in the 12th century on top of an original roman sentry tower; a small taste of what's to come in the future when it comes to the inclusion of Castles & Palaces all throughout Portugal ;) This seaplane base sits on the narrow valley of the Zêzere river in the village of Dornes, quite a few Kms north of the Castelo de Bode dam, one of the most important ones in the country.
The model of the tower is photoreal but unfortunately not of the actual tower; it's that of a spanish tower (located in the Trujilo region) which looks somewhat like the one in Dornes. The Church of Dornes is also represented with a photoreal model but again, not of the actual church, but instead of a very, very similar one from a town in the same region.
And now the pictures:
Capture.PNG
View of the pier and water runway

Capture2.PNG
On 'final' to the landing area with Dornes village clearly visible below; Church & Tower to the right

Dornes.jpg
Actual picture of Dornes taken roughly from the same angle as the snap above from the simulator

My workflow is being quite slow as I'm having lots of stuff going on at the moment, but I'll try to finish the Water runways ASAP so I can move on to the airfields and then publish the first 'pack' of this mega-project! :)
And as always I'll keep posting updates and snapshots from time to time!
 
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Leo2789

Resource contributor
Hey everyone! Another update on the work here! :)
I'm pleased to announce that I currently have 3 members here helping me out by building accurate renditions of Portuguese castles that I will include in the scenery! I would also like to publicly thank them right here for the time and effort they are putting in to contribute to this scenery project! :)
The Dam/River Water runways are all done! Next up I just have to create the few remaining Harbour/River mouth/Sea Water runways, and I will start working on the airfields :)
I have in the meantime also completed the expansion of Portugal's main road network, which consists of Freeways/Motorways & Highways (Auto-Estradas & IP/IC roads in portuguese).
Since the days of Portugal Terrain (2005) Portugal has seen a massive expansion & growth of these types of roads, and since they make for great VFR references, I just had to add all new ones to my scenery, perfectly complimenting the ones already included with Portugal Terrain. Also included are accurate intersections for all of these roads in the Lisbon & Porto metropolitan areas, as well as everywhere else in the country for Motorways (Auto-Estradas) only.
I have also rectified an 'issue' that PTT had, which was the in-existence of bridges whenever a road crossed a river or reservoir in either a waterway with significant width or a valley with significant height; and so I have added bridges in all of these locations, including for the major roads I have added myself.
And now 2 maps which will help you understand exactly how much motorway/highway was added by me:
Roads_PTT.PNG
Motorway & Highway network included in 'Portugal Terrain'

Roads_NEW.PNG
Motorway & Highway network included in 'Portugal Terrain' + the ones I added to my project!

I shall post again when I have another important update to share with you! :)
 
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