Glander, Tassilo; Döllner, Jürgen
Computers, Environment and Urban Systems
Virtual 3D city models increasingly cover whole city areas, hence, the perception of complex urban structures becomes increasingly difficult. Using abstract visualization, complexity of these models can be hidden where its visibility is unnecessary, while important features are maintained and highlighted for better comprehension and communication. We present a technique to automatically generalize a given virtual 3D city model consisting of building models, an infrastructure network and optional land coverage data, this technique creates several representations of increasing levels of abstraction. Using the infrastructure network, our technique groups building models and replaces them with cell blocks, while preserving local landmarks. By computing a landmark hierarchy, we reduce the set of initial landmarks in a spatially balanced manner for use in higher levels of abstraction. In four application examples, we demonstrate smooth visualization of transitions between precomputed representations, dynamic landmark highlighting according to virtual camera distance, an implementation of a cognitively enhanced route representation, and generalization lenses to combine precomputed representations in focus + context visualization.