Integrating CAD+GIS for Facilities Management

I’ve focused on GIS for IoT and big data processing the past few years.  Just got the call to help out now with GIS for facilities management.   I’m building this CAD + GIS resource list for my own reference and to share with CAD and GIS operators I’ll be working with.

CAD-GIS Overview

A quick tour of working with CAD data
[ArcGIS Help]

CAD Integration Community

Georeferencing CAD

Overlaying CAD Data into ArcGIS – [ArcGIS Help]

Lining up CAD Data in ArcGIS
[ UC 2017 presentation by Margaret Maher, author of the book.]

  • CAD and ArcGIS approaches
  • Reasons why data might not align, and visual examples
  • Details on how to modify the PRJ
    • The Scale Factor parameter
    • How it affects false Easting and Northing
  • What to request from the CAD operator (AutoCAD & Microstation)
  • List of deep-dive resources on projection

Using GIS inside CAD

Exporting features to CAD drawings
Design projects in CAD can begin with base data generated from a GIS. Export feature classes and shapefiles to AutoCAD and MicroStation formats.

A quick tour of ArcGIS for AutoCAD

CAD-GIS Data Integration

Strategies for migrating CAD to a Geodatabase – [ArcGIS Help]

Standardizing CAD for Importing into Geodatabases – Lessons Learned
[Esri UC 2017 presentation by city of Aurora, CO]

  • The city’s CAD data submittal standards
  • CAD terminology, AutoCAD and Civil 3D
  • CAD Batch Standards Checker
  • FME Workbench
  • Understanding the technology strengths and weaknesses
  • Engaging stakeholders




My Very Short History of LiDAR, GIS, and CAD

In a letter to my son, the young architect.  With a reading assignment from Dad.

Are you architects seeing more about the integration of these three technologies?

LiDAR started more than a decade ago in remote sensing from satellites, first tested from the shuttles for terrain and elevation modeling.  When I was in the Univ. of Maryland GIS program, they were working on calibrating LiDAR for remote sensing of vegetation – different levels of tree canopy to assess forest health.
When I was working GIS in for the city of Philadelphia, the GIS staff started seeing LiDAR in the urban environment.  GIS and LiDAR vendors were partnering with the city to use LiDAR for 3D modeling of the downtown area.  Then they started using portable LiDAR sensors – the size of a wheelbarrow – to survey the subway spaces in Center City.  And the interiors of some buildings.  The focus was public safety and emergency response.
Now we see LiDAR moving into the consumer market – interior design and real estate are the focus of the two articles below.  Made possible because LiDAR sensors are smaller and cheaper.  (Where have we heard that before… )

The architect’s reply just in:

We see this happening but don’t use it directly.  There is talk of it being used in surveying but not for design. 
We have our own information-imbedded software (Building Information Modeling – BIM) which we use to design with and to communicate material quantities and interfaces.  The first article mentioned intergratig LiDAR and BIM. 
We are seeing companies which market the 3D scanning service for interiors and you can imagine that we could use that for modeling existing conditions, but the issue is that most of the time we need those existing models to contain information – BIM – and to be manually input. 
The 3d rendering company we work with has a portable version of this and they use it to scan interiors because all they need to do their work is geometries and surfaces. 
I can definitely see an integration of this technology with our BIM but we need and additional layer of information. The BIM software that we use is called Revit.