Simulation & Visualization of Infrastructure for Economic Development
The Gary/Chicago International Airport is planning an expansion to extend the main runway and increase capabilities of the airport. The expansion is expected to attract new business to the region and promote future economic growth.
A major issue with the expansion is a 15-foot-high railroad embankment located near the northwest end of the runway. A portion of the railroad must be relocated to meet safety regulations and to accommodate the longer runway. Simulation and 3-D Visualization have been identified as tools to aid in communicating the project to the public.
A partnership has been formed between the City of Gary and Purdue University Calumet for stimulating economic planning and development of the city. Visualization of the Gary Airport runway extension is the first project resulting from the partnership.
Satellite imagery and GIS data were combined with architectural plans and images to produce a 3-D model of the existing and proposed airport along with its surrounding areas. Animation was added to the model of a plane taking off and a train traveling on the existing railroad located near the end of the runway for visualization for effective communication .
A video combined with 3-D renderings and animations of the existing and proposed airport were created. The project provides benefits of simulation, virtual reality, and 3-D visualization to enhance and support the city’s capabilities for economic development and growth in the airport region.
Future uses will interface 3D visualization to more sophisticated simulation models for site location analysis, emergency facilities planning, design review, and marketing.
Faculty Collaborator: Amlan Mitra, Professor of Economics