Assigning Information in ArchiCAD for Material TakeoffsAECbytes Archived Article (Dec 16, 2010)

A Building Information Model is built on an integrated 3D database. This database allows you to automatically generate sections, elevations, plans, details, 3D views and more. This tutorial examines ways that you can use this database to assign properties to building elements and generate a material takeoff. It takes you through an example of assigning properties to a wall, programming these properties, linking these properties to the database, assigning the properties to building elements, and viewing a material takeoff. The concepts presented with this example are applicable to all construction elements in ArchiCAD including roofs, slabs, floors, columns and beams.

About the Author

Thomas M. Simmons, the founder of ARCHVISTA, Inc. and LearnVirtual, has spoken at major industry events including AEC Systems, Ecobuild, AIACC Desert Practice Conference, and the AIACC Monterey Design Conference. He has authored several books on Building Information Modeling, ArchiCAD and architectural technology. He was formerly the Director of Technology with the award winning firm of EHDD Architects, San Francisco, and has earned a Masters of Architecture from UC Berkeley. He can be reached at

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