Removing taxiway names


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FSDevConf team
Resource contributor
This is the XML sent to the compiler for a taxiway designator


The sim certainly doesn't care about the name which is not unique but uses the index which is. The name property sent to the compiler for a taxiway path is the index


And finally the SDK defines it so


Clearly you can have 255 taxiway designators with 0 being reserved for Blank
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There are quite a lot of stock FSX airports where the original developers used this 'split' technique. I have to assume that, at some stage, they found that by doing this AI movements could be improved.
Well, I will be utterly honest.
I do not believe they did this on purpose, it can be the result of them using a different program to design the default airport, or designing different parts of it in different times.
I cannot even imagine they are spending time tweaking AI behavior, especially on ground where we all know are the main problems related to AI handling. And these problems are still identical from FS2004 (2003)!
The main big problem of ground handling is parking spots availability, that makes any default airport unusable with any add-on AI traffic, LM has improved this (just a little) from V4 to V5.
What I've noticed more from V4 to V5, they added some more terminal buildings at big airports (and many times they did not add related parking spots, that's bad), or they modified a little bit the ground layout.
The only thing they improved in some airports is building positioning, many of them are 100% in correct position if compared to satellite images, and this is a big thumb up for LM.
As George said, It stops ground control from holding AI aircraft (on, for example, taxiway A) until the preceeding AI aircraft has cleared (for example, taxiway B).
Having multiple A's means that the following aircraft can bunch up more all on taxiway A.
Damn, they're some fast typists on here...
Coming to LICJ, there is no different frequency for that taxiway, ground and apron is the same frequency (121.625), so same guy talking to planes on that frequency, that is just a matter of (pretty much) legal organisation of the apron between the local handling society and the Italian air traffic service provider (ENAV).
The fact that the orange segment is handled by the tower is a matter of practicality, as soon as an aeroplane is about to cross rwy 20 from T towards E, the only logical thing is to transfer it from GND to TWR.
But again, charts might say one thing, and in real life it can be done in a different way, always keep that in mind.
Other examples of airports with more than one GND frequency are pretty much any European big hubs, such as EHAM, EDDF, EDDM, LFPG, EGLL, and so on.

You are thinking to have a different GND handling by any payware/freeware ATC program? Again, forget it, it is not possible, at all.

Hope I answered your question!
Thanks for your comprehensive answer. Most of it was nothing new, however, the LICJ part had been interesting (even if the RWY crossing requirement was evident). Regarding taxiway D, I was only caught by the short green section that didn't make too much sense to me.

And no, I never really thought about any ATC program that could act half the way realistically in the given environment. I'm simming now well over 30 years and don't believe in miracles. I'd been quite often at Punta Raisi in the mid-70s and saw lots of challenging approaches while sitting on a jump seat in the cockpit of a BAC 1-11 (while studying I used to work for a travel agency that chartered those flights).
This has not come up in this forum for many years but I remember there being quite a lot of discussion about 'doubled-up taxiway designators' in years past - you may like to do a search for these discussions.

Now that Jon has pointed out that each designator has a unique index number, which I now assume FSX uses in preference to the letter, I can see how ground handling of AI could be affected/improved, particularly when a long taxiway with a single letter is being utilised. There are quite a lot of stock FSX airports where the original developers used this 'split' technique. I have to assume that, at some stage, they found that by doing this AI movements could be improved.
Hey, you might be right, but I think this never could compensate the loss of time and efficiency caused by the spacing of arriving and even of departing AI aircraft (as long as default ATC is involved). :duck:
As a relative newcomer to this forum you are welcome to your opinions but as you can see there are some of us who think otherwise to you.
I do apologize if my post was intended as an argument, by any means, I had no such intention!
Yes I am new to this forum, but I am not new to using ADE to modify airports for a better AI management, and I always encountered plenty of nonsense stuff hardly-coded by FS9/FSX/P3D that made airport developing quite challenging.
That is why I am thinking MS/LM has never dedicated much time for AI development (opinions by other simmers and developers on P3D forums seem to agree with mine).
If I am not wrong, the only changes in the ATC/AI engine were from FS2002 to FS2004 (introduction of AI pushback and "line up and wait" for departures), and from FS2004 to FSX (introduction of QNH difference from hPa to mmHg).

It is not me thinking they are not using layering for taxiway, as it is in the SDK, it is clear that the parameter is there and might have a function.
I am not even thinking you are wrong when saying that layering affects AI ground behavior, it most probably does.
I was simply considering that it is unlikely that the sim developer did extensive testing of this function (the default AI traffic is not dense enough to cause congestion even at big airports).

So far, I understand that multiple taxiway layer will somehow reduce the annoying ATC telling "hold position, caution XXX on taxiway" with no apparent reason, am I right?

I am really interested in this new possible feature, but we definitely need more evidence to consider this a usable and solid function.
What I always try to do is to keep my approach to any problem the most scientific possible.
I will try to modify some long taxiways I have in my airports to see if this affects AI ground behavior. I expect this, as tgibson said, not to be a straightforward work.

I think there are multiple parameters to consider when talking about taxiway layer:
  1. Does layer/UP vs layer/DOWN changes something in the way ATC will process AI routing?
  2. Does ARRIVING vs DEPARTING AI traffic changes when considering taxiway layer it is taxying on?
  3. Can taxiway layer be used to force specific routing, or the ATC will calculate the shortest way (which is annoying since planes might be routed via aprons, avoiding main taxiways)
If this can be further developed, I think it would be an excellent idea to make layers visible in ADE.
I am looking forward for discussion of this feature.



Resource contributor
Um, who said anything about layers? Jon mentioned the Index values - these are only used by FS to know how a given taxiway is linked to other taxiways. It is not a layer. If you mean the Move Up and Move Down commands in ADE (I don't know if taxiways have these), those are only for the ADE display and have no effect in FS. While multiple identical taxiway designations may help minimize planes holding far away from other planes, AFAIK it doesn't provide any priority of one plane over another.

I have never seen any AI behavior based on taxiway "preference" (that's not saying it doesn't exist). AFAIK in case of a conflict it is usually first come first served - if an arriving plane gets taxi clearance to the gate first then a departing aircraft who gets clearance later will wait short of the conflict point. If the opposite, then the arriving plane waits. Often ATC gets confused and lets both planes taxi too far - then you have a standoff.