CD3 2011 Other New Features

I’m sure a lot of you with subscriptions have download the new Civil 3D 2011 and have started playing with new new features. I have provided a list of other smaller new features that have also been added. Make the jump to check out some gems.

  1. New visual styles have been added to the visual style manager. ( X-Ray, Hidden, Shades of Gray Wireframe, Shaded Wireframe, Shaded, Shaded with Edges, and Sketchy. You can view these styles in the Views ribbon under the View contextual tab.


2.  The User Interface and Show Toolbars features have been added to the View contextual tab also. The User Interface allows you to control View Cube, Navigation Bar, Show Motion, Text Window, and Drawing Status Bar. The Toolbars feature is something that will come in handy for those techs and engineers that love their old 2009 toolbars. This features will allow you to add those toolbars. The category of toolbars include: AutoCAD, Autodesk Seek, Civil, Express, Taskbaseeribbon, Toolbasedribbon.


3. Create Section Sheets has been added in the Output contextual Tab / plan production ribbon. In addition, the export has a new look.


4. The Import HEC-RAS feature has been added to the Insert contextual tab.


5. One great new feature some people will like is the Visibility Check feature. This feature includes

  • Point to Point: used for sight distance check or validity of terrain at intersections and curves. This can be used for road design. A good rule of thumb when the command ask you for height of eye is to use 3.75’ and 0.50’ for height of target. The red arrows represents that the target can not be seen from the height of eye. The green arrow represents that the target can be seen from the distance assigned.


  • Zone of Visual Influence: allows your to assign hatch pattern when you need to determine if a vertical object, such as traffic light or a tower, can be seen from within a certain radius. This feature can also be used to determine how far a driver can see from a stop line at an intersection.


  • Check Sight Distance: this feature basically calculates sight distances along a roadway to ensure that the horizontal road design meets the required minimum sight distances. C3D will graphically highlight the areas that do not meet the minimum values. This will definitely come in handy for road designs. The command will ask you for  minimum sight distance and you typically would want to use your project city’s design and construction standards for this input.


  • Drive: This feature is really amazing. It allows you to simulate driving through a 3D model using the Drive command. In order to used this feature you must have a profile and corridor ( or feature line, or 3D polyline). You will be able to select the visual style and design speed of your animation drive video. I must warn you though when you run the video it will eat up a lot of you memory and will bog you down slightly.

visibility_check image

6. Toolspace ribbon in your Home contextual tab has added the prospector, settings and toolbox commands to the user interface.. This will allow you to control the display of these features and commands.


7. As you all know, one of the new big features that came with C3D 2011 was the Point Cloud features. You can find this feature  in the Civil 3D workspace /  Modify contextual Tab / Ground data ribbon.


You can also find Point Cloud commands in the Tool-base Geospatial workspace / Insert contextual tab / ground data ribbon and Create contextual tab / point cloud and 3D surface ribbon.

point_cloud2 point_cloud

I hope these new features will come in handy for your designs.


  1. Mark Spatz says:

    Great post! What a power pack of new analysis features. This is a great presentation of the common sense use of these tools that will ring a bell when others read; I know it did with me. Something I will definitely share around the office to engineers. Thanks again…

  2. Tony Carcamo says:

    Thank you for the comment. 🙂 I’m working on part 2 thats goes with this post.

  3. Andrew Stewart says:

    I’m working on a bulletproof list of reasons why my boss should let me upgrade everybody to 2011. He has a few concerns and I was hoping someone might shed some light for me.

    Will there be any additional training necessary to move from 2009 to 2011? I think they’re similar enough that if you’re comfortable in 2009 you can make the transition pretty easily.
    Can you install it on a 32-bit OS?
    The previous lack of a 64-bit Object Enabler meant we couldn’t view Civil 3D objects in vanilla CAD on a 64-bit machine. Is there now a 64-bit OE, or will there be one? Is there improved interoperability between C3D 2011 and plain old CAD?

    Thanks in advance for any help. I don’t understand why it’s even a question, but I need to go in fully armed.

    • Rick Graham says:

      Going from 2009 to 2011 will introduce the ribbon to the new user. It WILL take some getting used to finding old familiar commands. Luckily, the included ‘Where is my command’ will help out. But I’m just saying that there will be a learning curve in this aspect.

  4. Mark Spatz says:

    1) I agree on the training. There are new features workship videos folks can watch to know what is new but other than that everything else should remain the same.
    2) There is a 32-bit version.
    3) I don’t know about that one off the top of my head.

  5. Tony Carcamo says:

    i will try to add some short videos on examples of how to use some of the new features that comes with C3D 2011. This will give you a better understanding of the benifits of using a 64 bit C3D 2011. The biggest change, like Rick mention, is the ribbon. The users will need to get firmilarized with the ribbon and where everything is.

  6. Andrew Stewart says:

    Thanks for the help everyone. I spoke to our reseller and looked around myself, and the best I can tell is that an Object Enabler hasn’t been released yet, but should be out eventually. We work around this (everyone who would need this has 64-bit machines anyway, so they can’t use the old OE either) already, and I think I can talk management into upgrading. But I have to wait to discuss it in the next official meeting of…

    The CAD Committee!

  7. Mohammad Paydari says:

    I think we can add to this list Calculate/Edit Superelevation, superelevation view & edit roundabout

  8. Tony Carcamo says:

    yes thats also a good one.

  9. Shane Matt says:

    Thanks for the brief overview!