Thursday, August 28, 2008

Area Plans...what's the big deal?

Area Plans are views that show spatial relationships based on area schemes and levels in your model. You can have multiple area plans for every area scheme and level. Each area plan can have distinct area boundaries, tags, and color schemes. The question is when to use the area plan in the first place. Well, let’s say you want to color up a plan to show a client the different departments the building has. Or maybe you need to count up the square footage or a specific portion of the building. Or you need to create a life safety plan that shows different areas within a specific department. The easiest way to accomplish this is to use Area Plans. Once you’ve got a floor plan set up you can create an Area Plan from it. The first thing you should do is set up a Color Fill Scheme. Select Settings → Color Fill Schemes, this opens the Edit Color Scheme dialog. Here you’ll be able to create new schemes and customize them to suit your needs. Click here to learn more about how to create Color Schemes. Once you’ve created the color scheme return to the plan view you want to create an Area Plan from and click the Room and Area tab on the Design Bar. Note: If you do not see the Room and Area tab on the Design Bar, right click in an empty space in the Design Bar and select it from the list. After clicking Area Plan select the level for the plan you want to create and then click OK. You will be asked you if you want Revit to create area boundary lines associated with the exterior walls automatically. This is up to you. If you choose no you’ll have to draw them in yourself. If you choose yes the boundary lines on the exterior walls will be drawn automatically, but you will have to draw in all other boundary lines. Before you start creating all the boundary lines, open the View Properties and choose the Color Scheme you created from the Color Scheme parameter in the instance parameters. Next, draw in all the boundary lines to create areas in the plan. Select the Area tool and place it one by one over the areas you created in the previous steps. This is similar to creating rooms with the room tool. As the areas are being placed they will be colored with respect to the color fill scheme you created and added to this view. The last thing to do is add the Color Scheme Legend. You do this by clicking the Color Scheme Legend tool and then with your cursor placing it in the view in an appropriate location. Remember the Area Plan tool is an effective way to graphically show specific areas as well as creating life safety plans.

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RevitED (Revit Education) and general BIM topics. I've been using Revit now for 11 years, and though I feel I've got a pretty good handle on the software it seems each day I learn something new. I want to share that with the readers of this blog and hope you learn something new as well.