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Multi-layered topography

Multi-layered topography

  • Is there any possible workflow in revit to demonstrate the soil strata (multi-layered topography) in 3D model? 

Well, this is an interesting question. I simply don't see anything that will do this in out-of-the-box Revit, and don't use Civil 3D (the more logical place to look, I think). Someone is sure to say it's a breeze with Dynamo...


As the image below shows, I did create three stacked topo surfaces in Revit to represent the strata boundaries, and exported these as polyface meshes to AutoCAD. There, I followed a procedure I found in the Autodesk Knowledgebase:

Issue:You have a polyface mesh object and you need to convert it to a NURBS Surface object.
Solution:To convert a polyface mesh object to a NURBS Surface object:
  • Type FACETERSMOOTHLEV into the command line and press Enter. [The text said FACETRESMOOTHELEV, but that is an error.]
  • Set the system variable to 0 and press Enter.
  • Type CONVTOMESH into the command line and press Enter. Then select the objects and press Enter.
  • Type CONVTOSURFACE into the command line and press Enter. Select the objects and press Enter.

Then I created a closed polyline around the perimeter of the topos, extruded it above and below them, and then SLICEd the solid with the surfaces to create the strata. Colored these and imported the CAD into Revit. But as you can see, the colors do not come through when cut by a section box, if that is one result you are looking for.




The strata DO appear correctly when cut by a section however:


topo strata section.jpg


All in all, interesting to have done, but far from a smooth workflow even if you are only doing it once. Frequent updates would really slow things down. And... you can't explode the CAD import - everything disappears with an error message.


On behalf of a user, I would like to add some comments regarding the need to represent soil layers on sections in Revit:
- There needs to be the ability to load multiple topographies e.g. Civil 3D, points, text or DWG files.
- Such topography would represent a boundary between different soil layers identified during geotechnical investigations.
- Each such topography would mark the top surface of soil layer below.
- One could use and extend the dialogue that is already available in Massing&Site>Model Site>Site Settings.

Toposurface settings.png
- Each layer and its corresponding soil type should be able to assign/define a unique hatching on cross sections.
- Additionally, it should be possible to cut all layers by construction and e.g. building pad.
- Additionally, the ability to calculate the balance of cut and fill would be helpful.



AutoCAD approach is excellent and good for presentation purpose. But this does not provide any of the benefits of a BIM software. Grading / Cutting and Filling, quantity of Earthwork etc. cannot be achieved by this approach.


I have used 3d modeling in DWG for each different strata (in the same coordinate system, of course) then created different revit models that I import to my working file. It's simple and efficient.

Status changed to: Implemented

We are pleased to say that this has been implemented in Revit 2024! Thank you for your contribution to improving Revit!

 -The Factory


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