Dynamic Parking Lot Design

This is an often asked and misunderstood workflow within Civil 3D.  The general question revolves around what objects should I use and how should I use them to create the finished design. We’ve done this forever using manual calculations and hand drafting.


Typically, users will opt for feature lines and grading objects first to create their design. And this is my assumption that feature lines closely resemble 3d polylines used in Land Desktop.  Granted, in Civil 3D, if you make a change to the feature line that is a data source for a surface, then the ripple effect happens and the surface will update.

Only, with feature lines, we’re generally hand calculating key points and then possibly using some of the feature line tools to set curb line elevations.  Not a bad tool to use, but a very manual operation in this given scenario.

And, for the most part, you will get a surface. But probably one that you’ll extract the contours and edit them directly.  Again, a very similar mindset used in Land Desktop where at some point you will no longer utilize the LDD design database and rely on the information in the drawing. Pardon my language, but… Yuck!

Wouldn’t it be great if we could make a simple adjustment and have all the islands and curbs update and having a parking lot surface we would he HAPPY to show our boss? Read more of this post


Parcel Ownership for Oil & Gas Pipelines, Part 2

To pickup where we left off, let’s review what we have in the drawing.


The missing part is the parcel information in the data band between the “property lines.”

To do this, we have two options, one would be to just create hard text that would require re-positioning whenever the alignment moved or use a pipe connected to the structures, allowing the pipe information to adjust as the alignment adjusted. But how do we use the pipe to use the parcel information?
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Parcel Ownership for Oil & Gas Pipelines, Part 1


Living in Pennsylvania, the Marcellus Shale has had a positive business impact on firms in and around the area. With that, the Oil & Gas industry has brought a new way of creating design documentation than we have been accustomed to doing in the past. For instance, the pipeline will stretch many miles and cross many properties. And as is often the case, easements will have to be obtained. So along the pipeline concept plan will have to be some documentation of property impact.

Along comes the idea that in the profile, we add a band indicating the station at which a parcel line crosses the alignment. And, in between those “crossings,” we indicate who owns that parcel.


Snapshot Courtesy of Entech Engineering, Reading, PA.

So, how do we do that?

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