Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Autodesk Vehicle Tracking 2014

Every project we work on, whether you are an architect or engineer,  we perform some type of design analysis to ensure our design meets local, state, or federal construction standards. In Civil 3D, we can perform slope, grading, sight distance, drainage and hydraulic, road vertical analysis and much more. Now with the new addition of Autodesk Vehicle Tracking 2014 software, we can now add vehicle swept path analysis to the list. 

Just early last week, Autodesk introduced the new Autodesk Vehicle Tracking 2014  (formally known as Auto Track) software to the world. This software was acquired by Autodesk from Savoy Computing Services in August.  Autodesk Vehicle Tracking software performs transportation analysis for vehicle swept path. In addition, it also provides design solution for vehicle movements in areas such as parking lots. The software also allows you to evaluate steering  movements for light rail vehicles and aircrafts. Last but not least, Autodesk Vehicle Tracking can assist in designing parking lots and road intersections such as roundabout. Another positive note about the software is that it is fully integrated into Autodesk software such as AutoCAD, AutoCAD Civil 3D, AutoCAD Plant 3D, AutoCAD Map 3D and AutoCAD Utility Design software. With capabilities of 3D modeling, performing vertical clearance, vertical grades and crossfalls, this software can help designers and civil engineers optimize their design faster.

 I have provided several screenshots of the numerous setting and features that comes with this software. Enjoy


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The Vehicle Tracking Ribbon

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Vehicle Library

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Roundabout standards and Vehicle Positioning

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Video: Autodesk Vehicle Tracking

Though Autodesk Vehicle Tracking is a powerful software with numerous tools it does has it’s bugs like most software, but don’t let this deter you from downloading it and taking it for a spin. See links below for known issues and documents. Thanks for stopping by and feel free to make comments. Have a great week and hopefully I will see a few of you at AU.



Monday, November 4, 2013

Creating Shapefiles from Civil 3D Parcels

Good evening everyone. In this post I would like to share a tip on how to create shapefiles from Civil 3D parcels. So far this is the only way I know how to convert parcels to shapefiles but I am sure there are other methods out there. Hopefully this will be helpful to some of you.

Before we get started we have to discuss coordinate system. We all know all firms are different and have different workflows. Some firms may create their plats in state plane and some on surface. If your plat containing your parcels was created on surface, you will have to perform a coordinate conversion or move the data once it has been import from an SDF file. In this example I will make my drawing in state plane to simplify things.

  • Open the drawing that contain the parcel data you wish to transfer.
  • Select the OUTPUT Tab on the ribbon then select Export Civil Objects to SDF.

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  • The Export to SDF dialog box will appear. On the first row, browse to the desire location you wish to save the SDF file and assign a name. Then set the coordinate system if not assigned.

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  • Next, open a new drawing and set the same coordinate system as the file we just saved.
  • On the command line type MAPIMPORT and browse to the SDF at we just created and select OK.
  • The import dialog box will appear. Check the Import polygon as close Polylines options. Then under the DATA column click the small selection box.

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  • The Attribute Data dialog box will appear. As the default the Do not import attribute data will be selected. Select the Create Object Data. Then click on the Select Fields button.

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  • The Object Data Mapping dialog box will appear. For now I will select all the targeted fields and select OK twice.

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  • This will take you back to the Import dialog box. You will now see a data file under the Data column. Click OK.  All the closed parcels areas should appear in your drawing as closed polylines now. At this stage, if you drawing was not on state plane but on surface you can now move all the linework to the correct location before we export to a shapefile.

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  • On the command line type MAPEXPORT. The Export Location dialog box will appear. Select a folder or create a folder that you wish to save all your GIS data for your shapefile and assign a file name. Then at the bottom under Files of Type select ESRI Shapfile (*shp.)

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  • The Export dialog box will now appear. For the option type select Line. Under the Select Objects to Export click Select All. You can also assign a layer for all your objects.

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  • Now select the DATA tab. As a default there are no attributes. Click the Select Attributes button.
  • The Select Attributes dialog box will appear. Expand Object Data and check the Parcels options. (It may appear as the SDF file that we created) For now I will select to export everything. Click OK

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  • This will take you back to the Export dialog box. You will now see attributes in the source Fields column. Click OK

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  • After a few seconds all the polylines in your drawing will be converted to shapefiles. If you look under the project folder that you assigned to save all your GIS data you will see several new files such as idx, cpg, dbf, prj, shx, and your shapefile. You will need to send all these files with your shapefile.
  • Before you send your new shapfile out the door, I would run a quick test by import the shapefile using the Data Connect feature in the Planning & Analysis workspace or the MAPIMPORT command and import the new shapefile. Then use the GEOMAP feature to ensure all the linework aligns with the aerial and appears in the correct location. Anyways I hope this information will be useful to you. Have a great week and thanks for stopping by.