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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

How do you handle Multi Storey typical levels in Revit?

Groups or links?  Or something else?


EDIT - Some additional research:
1. Model groups for Floor Plates is a bad idea. Between Editability issues, Canvas editing mode, reconciliation issues, etc, its almost a given that the groups will eventually fail. Links- while more complicated- are much better suited for tall buildings and floor plates. Groups are also a lot heavier to work with, when you have something that large, and a large number of them.

2. As for how to model walls? i model the walls based on the intent of the walls. If its an exterior facade wall, and my intent is that the wall is 70 feet tall from the ground level, i model it 70 feet tall, from the ground level. If that happens to span 5 storeys so be it. A wall on the interior OF a floor? It DOESNT span multiple storeys. The only case you can make for interior walls spanning multiple storeys in revit, is really Shaft Walls. Even then, we dont do them this way, since groups for small things like Cores handle any alignment issues.

However, Navisworks isnt even a consideration. If youre doing any kind of real coordination in navisworks, youll be exporting to NWC in multiple segments anyway, so it doesnt even matter if you model the walls full height or storey by storey. Ive got an 11 floor building where the facade is modeled full height, and i still have everything (facade included) broken up in Navis Level by Level. Revt Section boxes and multiple export views make this a cinch.
Wall- Storey by storey or Multi-level - Page 2

The other issue with floor plates is it becomes too big of a group. Rooms (imho) are the perfect sizes for groups, so yes... We use Groups inside of Links. A few key things about groups:

1. They dont always check for item editability rights until you hit FINISH group...
2. Everything gets lost fi you cant succeed in finishing the group.
3. They break apart often if they have conflict resolutions

I did an AU class on using Links as a replacement for groups in taller buildings. The handouts are on my blog. I even talked about a slightly unconventional approach we use with a single floor plate and Design Options, which makes it so you only have one floor plate modeled, for all variations in upper floors. It works fine, as long as you dont try to use the upper plate models as Room Bounding. Its not an issue for us, since we put our rooms IN the Upper Plate model, for those floors. The only other drawback to it is it cant be Space Bounding (Room Bounding) for MEP, either. Room Bounding properties of linked files do not respect any option other than Primary, since Linked File Room Bounding is a File Type selection and DO is a view selection.
Best Practices for Groups in High-rise Tower Models


  1. The groups work fine as long as the floors and layouts are truly typical. You eventually start running into problems when working with door schedules when one of the doors need to have a little different instance parameter value - then that changes everything. Also when elements are in the groups you cannot edit their data from schedule, for instance if you need to fill up some info about doors that are in groups you have to enter group and fill up their information in 2d/3d views.

  2. We've found that a combination of the Group/Link schemes works best. An initial Group is defined on a single floor. It is then saved out as an .RVT file which in turn is linked back in. This method avoids the fragility of Groups while engaging their flexibility.

    When work is required on the typical floor you are able to tweak the Group within the main file, export again and then reload and all the following links update.

  3. If you use Links, does this open it up for design options? Each of the multiple links could have a different 'option'? Never tried this, but, just had the idea. Then your 'typical' floor, can have a few variables.

    1. Finding out what revit wants can be time consuming and have negative impacts on productivity. Link. Groups. Multi storey large sites. Unusable slow files. Has autodesk reached the limitations of revit development.