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Creating a Site Model Automatically
  • 02 May 2024
  • 10 Minutes to read
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Creating a Site Model Automatically

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Article summary

A Site Model is a three-dimensional model that clusters information by assigning meaningful names to clearly defined areas in the space of a Site. With a site model, you can define and name the buildings, floors, rooms, or even more fine-grained spaces, of a site.

This process refers to automatically generated site models. Please check the criteria below carefully before you get started to determine if you can auto-generate or if you should manually create a site model instead.

Before You Start

Most often, you can use the auto-generate function to get a rough outline of your site model. However, there are some cases where this is not recommended. The most common cases of when you should manually generate your site model are when you have:

  • Multiple, nearby buildings in one instance. ​

  • Different floor heights which do not line up with each other in different parts of the building complex (think floors with ramps or platforms). 

If one of the above criteria applies, you should not use the auto-generate function.

Note: In order to see any changes reflected in your site model such as adding or removing floors, adding rooms, or editing your building outline, you must always click Save in the Datasets section of your menu and Publish.

Aligning the Dataset to the Ground Floor

Follow these steps to align the datasets to the ground floor:

Important: Since you have already aligned your datasets, it is important that you do not adjust this alignment. This step is simply to ensure that your site model knows where the ground floor is located, so make sure you only move your building as a whole.

Procedure

  1. Go to Site Setup > Dataset Alignment.

  2. Unhide the aligned datasets that you want to be a part of your site model by clicking the eye icon next to them.

  3. Use the Side Views at the bottom of your screen to check if the datasets aligned on the ground floor are sitting on the gray line. If they are, move onto Defining a Floor.

  4. If the ground floor datasets are not on the gray line, unlock the whole building by clicking the Lock icon.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated
  5. Use the Transformation menu to adjust the alignment of your ground floor so that it is sitting on the gray line.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated
  6. Once you have matched your building to the gray line, lock the datasets.

  7. Click Save.

  8. Click Publish when you have finished.

Auto-Generating the Site Model

Procedure

  1. Go to Site Setup > Site Model.

  2. Select Auto-generate in the Editor Options section of the menu. Confirm that you will overwrite the existing site model.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated
  3. Once the site model appears, the datasets will be grouped into a building with floors in the Datasets menu. Check the results to confirm that datasets have been matched correctly.

  4. Click Save.

  5. Click Publish when you have finished.

Fine Tuning the Site Model

Procedure

  1. You can change the name of a building by clicking the pencil icon next to Building.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated
  2. The site model automatically assigns names based on where your ground floor is located. The ground floor is labeled Floor 0. If the automatically generated floor names are not accurate, change the name of floors by clicking on the pencil button next to each floor name.

Note: If you do not need a perfect floorplan, the auto-generated building outline does not have to be extremely precise. In fact, the auto-generated site map is sufficient for many use cases. However, in some cases, for example if you need highly accurate floorplans, it is important to fine-tune your site model so that it is very accurate.

  1. To adjust the site model outline, expand the top left view by clicking Top View.

  2. Click the boundaries icon next to the building name. You will see a blue polygon placed on top of your building that likely does not appear to match your building. You will need to edit this.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated
  3. Start moving the white points of this polygon to fit around your actual building – the more precise you make it, the better your floor plan will look.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated
  4. Once you have sufficiently outlined your building on the map, you can move on to editing the floor and ceiling heights of your building (minumum height is 1 metre).

  5. Click Save.

  6. Click the Top View label again to go back to your split screen view to start working on fine-tuning your floor heights.

  7. Once you are in the split screen view, use the View Configuration menu to select either Side View (N->S) or Side View (E->W) or both.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated
  8. Use the rectangular area that appears in the Top View panel to adjust the content visible in the Side View below, depending on which side you have selected. Do this by moving your mouse over the rectangle and scrolling out with your mouse to adjust the size. Drag and drop the rectangle to where you would like it to be placed.

Note: You can rotate the view area by moving the rectangle on the top left panel while holding the Shift key.

  1. To adjust the height of the floors, change to the side view by clicking on either Side View titles. 

  2. In the Site structure section of the menu, select the floor you want to start with by clicking on the boundaries icon next to the floor name.

    A screenshot of a computer program  Description automatically generated
  3. You will now see that a yellow mesh rectangle has appeared around your selected floor. You can adjust the height of the floor by dragging the floor and ceiling so that the entire floor is covered. If you get a bit of the ceiling below, it will show up on the floor of the story above and vice versa. Make sure that the limits cover the ceiling and the floor, and that the floor does not cut into the floors above and below.

  4. Click Save.

  5. Repeat steps 12-15 for each floor of your building and ensure that each floor of the building has the correct height.

  6. Check if there are any floors missing. If you need to add another floor, select the floor of which you want to add a floor above or below. 

  7. Click on the + button next to your building name. 

  8. Choose to add a floor either above your top floor or below the floor you have selected.

  9. Adjust the height of the floor you just added by repeating steps 12-15.

  10. Click Save.

  11. Click Publish when you have finished.

Defining Rooms

Now that you have a basic site model, you are able to add more attributes to your building, such as rooms.

Procedure

  1. Unhide the floor and specific dataset with the room that you want to add by clicking the eye icon next to it. It is much easier to add a room when you are only viewing the floor that it is on.

  2. Using the View Configuration menu, select Top View

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  3. Use the red rectangular area that appears in the Side View screens (either Side View is fine), you can adjust the content visible in the Top View above. Do this by moving your mouse over the rectangle and scrolling out with your mouse to adjust the size. Drag and drop the rectangle to where you would like it to be placed.

    A screenshot of a computer  Description automatically generated

Note: You can rotate the view area by moving the rectangle on the top left panel while holding the Shift key

  1. Once you can clearly see the outlines of the rooms from the top view of your building, go into the Top View by clicking on its label.

  2. Click the + button next to the floor you want the room added on.

    A screenshot of a computer program  Description automatically generated
  3. Draw the outline of the room, similar to how you outlined your building in the beginning. The room outline must stay inside the floor and building outline.

  4. Using your cursor, click the corner of the room which you want to define. This will be the first spot you start drawing your room from, and where you will need to click to complete the outline of the room.

  5. Start drawing the perimeter of the room, using the underlying building as a guide.

    A screenshot of a computer program  Description automatically generated
  6. When you are finished defining the room, close the outline by connecting the last node to the first one. The node will turn green to indicate that the outline is closed.

    A screenshot of a computer program  Description automatically generated
  7. Now that you have a rough outline of your room, you can continue editing the shape of the room by dragging the white points around the perimeter until you are satisfied.

  8. Rename the room by clicking on the Pencil icon next to the room you just defined. Click OK when you are done.

  9. When your room is defined and named, click Save. You will now see the room as a part of your building. Repeat steps 5-12 to add more rooms to your site model.

  10. Click Publish when you have finished.

Adding Custom Attributes

To further label your site model, you can add custom attributes to the buildings, floors, and rooms.

Procedure

  1. Go to Site Setup > Site Model.

    site_model1
  2. In the site model side menu, click edit next to the entity that you want to add custom attributes to.

    site_model2
  3. In the Edit site entity menu under Custom attributes, enter the key in the Key field and the value for the key in the Value field.

    site_model3
  4. Click + to add the custom attribute to the site entity. You can delete custom attributes by clicking Delete next to the custom attribute.

    site_model4
  5. Click OK.

  6. Click Publish when you have finished.

Backing Up Your Site Model

Procedure

  1. Click Save once you have finished adding all building attributes that you want, including floors and rooms.

  2. Export your site model.

Checking Your Site Model

Procedure

  1. Once you are satisfied with your work, click Save.

  2. Exit the site model in the top right corner and this will bring you back to the main view of your site.

  3. You will now see a floor changer on the right side of your screen if everything has worked properly.

A spiral staircase in a room  Description automatically generated

Exporting a Site Model

Procedure

  1. Go to Site Setup > Site Model.

  2. Click Export site model from the Editor Options menu.

Importing a Site Model

Procedure

  1. Go to Site Setup > Site Model.

  2. Click Import site model from the Editor Options menu.

  3. Select the file you want to import.

Note: You cannot import a site model that is the same as or overlaps with the site model currently used for the site.

  1. Click Save.


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