Tracking Room Areas in AutoCAD



Most people know me through my six Autodesk Revit textbooks and my blog BIM Chapters. However, I also have two AutoCAD books: Residential Design using AutoCAD 2023 and Commercial Design using AutoCAD 2023. My first AutoCAD-based book has a 2002 copyright, and all are published by SDC Publications. The material shared in this post is derived from the commercial design AutoCAD book.


Adding Polylines

In AutoCAD, it is common to place a polyline around the perimeter of a room and observer the area via the Properties Palette, as shown in the following two images. Then, text is often added to track the area and keep the client informed. However, if the size of the room changes, the text does not automatically update. But there is a way to make a special version of text update automatically!



Inserting Fields

Within the text editor, right-click and select Insert Field… This allows you to report the area of a selected object, a polyline in our example.


Next, you are presented with the Field dialog. Select Object and then use the pick icon to select the polyline defining a given room.

Once the polyline is selected, the dialog will update to show preview/formatting options.


When the dialog is closed, the value for the selected property is displayed as text within the text editor! This text will update if the room/polyline is adjusted. Sometimes you need to right-click on the field and select update. But closing and reopening the file will also update the field.




This simple tip can save time and, more importantly, avoid errors in documentation and client communication.