Converting a Polyline into a Terrain Perimeter

Reference Number: KB-00324
Last Modified: March 27, 2023

The information in this article applies to:



In a floor plan view, I have created a plot plan polyline using the CAD tools. I would now like to convert this polyline into a terrain perimeter. How do I do this?


Chief Architect allows you to convert 2D CAD drawings into a variety of 3D objects, including a plan's terrain perimeter. This allows you to create a terrain perimeter that both bounds the 3D terrain and defines the property on which the plan will be built.  

To convert a polyline into a terrain perimeter

  1. First, Open  an existing Chief Architect plan in which you would like to convert a polyline into a terrain perimeter, or create a New Plan  and draw a plot plan perimeter.   

    Plot plan perimeter created using a polyline 

  2. Click on the plot plan polyline to select it, then click the Convert Polyline  edit button. 

  3. In the Convert Polyline dialog that displays, select the Terrain Perimeter option, then click OK.

    Note: If Terrain Perimeter is grayed out and cannot be selected in the Convert Polyline dialog, there are two possible causes:

    • The first is that a Terrain Perimeter is already present, in which case you can simply delete it and then convert your polyline to replace it.

    • The other possibility is that the polyline is not completely closed. You can confirm this on the General panel of the Polyline Specification dialog. An open polyline will read 'Not closed' under the Area heading, while a closed polyline will show a value. Only a closed polyline can be converted to a Terrain Perimeter.

    Select Terrain Perimeter and decide what layer option to use

  4. In the Terrain Specification dialog that appears next, make any desired changes to the specifications for your terrain, then click OK.

  5. Your terrain perimeter is now visible in both 2D and 3D views. To view the results in 3D, select 3D> Create Perspective View> Perspective Full Overview  from the menu. 

    Perspective Full Overview of a Terrain Perimeter

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