Whilst setting up a model in Autodesk Revit, one of the most important steps you will need to take, especially when collaborating with other parties on a BIM project, is to establish the location of the project according to site data. This task will ideally be agreed upon and undertaken at the beginning of the project or at least prior to collaboration.
There are several ways the location and orientation of the building site can be set, and in this article we will look at the ‘Shared Reference Point’ add-in which works by using an exported XML file from AutoCAD Civil 3D so you don’t need the 3D model. The add-in can be downloaded along with all the other subscription entitled add-ins from your Autodesk account as below.
As far as your Revit model goes, you do not need to have that much modelled in to use the add-in. Below is a screenshot of the out of the box Architectural template file and it’s in the ‘Site’ floor plan, to which the project and survey points are visible. The only additions to this are two grid lines drawn through the Base Points and it is the vertical line we need for the add-in ‘grid 1’.
Once you are in possession of the .xml file you then go to the ‘Add-Ins’ tab in Revit and select the ‘Import Shared Coordinates from XML file’ tool, to which you are then prompted to select the ORIGIN point, so I’ll select the project base point.
You will then be prompted to ‘Select a point on the +Y (Up) Direction to align to’. In this case it will be necessary to select a point on ‘Grid Line 1’, above the base points as below.
It will then launch an ‘Explorer’ window and allow you to browse for and select the XML file, click open when this is done.
You will then get a notification confirming that you wish to create the NEW Shared Coordinates, click ‘Yes’ and you will receive confirmation of the new coordinates.
Upon checking the base points, you will see that they are both still in their default locations 0,0,0. There is however one more task left to do.
The last step is to go to the ‘Manage’ tab on the ribbon and select the ‘Location’ tool.
You then select the ‘site’ tab and you will see the new shared site in there with the existing internal one, which will be current. Select the new site (DEMO-SITE) and then click ‘Make Current’. Click ‘OK’ to exit the dialogue box.
When you now check the base points, they will have updated to the new shared coordinates including orientation and elevation of the site.