2D floor plans without drawing the 3D object

Question. If a person needed to draw floor plans for a gas station, this includes, pumps, parking lot, floor plan, etc, using SUpro, with out drawing the gas station in 3d, how would one do that in SUpro? are 2d architecture symbols available?

My father in law is an architect and a dang good one. He is doing a hospital right now and i wanted to see if SU could handle a work flow such as this or at least the gas station he designed.

would this be a layout only since no 3d will be used? or can it be done in SU, just do it in overhead and turn off perspective?

I would want to have schedules, dimensions, and all the stuff that needs to be on there:)


I guess one could do it but SU is NOT a 2D CAD program. Wouldn’t it just be easier in a 2D CAD program?

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Yes, i guess it would be, but i have seen floor plans on the layout website. Here is an example i found of someone using SU to create the floor plan. I know that layout uses scenes from SU. that is how i make drawings for my mechanical parts, but how are these floor plans for hospitals, hotels, etc done in SU

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Use a combination of SU and LO. SketchUp for the bulk of the line work and textures and LayOut for the rest.

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ok, so in SU, i can do just the 2D linework from the top view, with perspective off?

what about symbols such as windows, doors, electrical, etc etc. Is there a library for this?

Thanks dave. I remember the online demo you gave me for layout for mechanical stuff, but things just got complicated when my father in law asked me about SU for 2D drawings for large buildings, houses, etc.

They don’t use SU for these perhaps? They mostly use some BIM program. We get plans in all the time for our buildings and NONE are done in SU. The vast majority are done in Revit so the Architects can coordinate with the mech contractor, the G.C. and the other disciplines. I would think that just the change orders in SU would be a nightmare.
For small jobs, sure SU and Layout can work but for a big ones I just don’t see anything but headaches. I am sure that I will be told otherwise :wink: I know what we do and the architects that work for use do as well.

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You can draw that stuff in in SketchUp or you can use symbols for a lot of it from scrapbooks in LO. There are a number of them available from Sketchucation

Check out the work of Nick Sonder. Pretty much exclusively SketchUp and LayOut. It seems to work fine for him with large projects.

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Nick SOnder, i think i saw a basecamp article on him last night… I will check him out. thanks for sharing.

I will also check out the libraries from sketchucation.

I wouldn’t call single-family residential a “large project” but to each their own. Absolutely beautiful work though.

I use SU/LO for 2D work all the time after migrating from Autocad. I now find it much easier to use SU and it has the 3D capabilities when I need them. There are a few things someone used to a 2D environment will struggle with, such as arcs and circles being segmental.

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Sketchup is not preconfigured for any particular industry or application so it is a challenge to find libraries of 2d symbols but they can be found and/or converted from ACAD files or just make your own. Schedules are also not automated so you would need to do those somewhat manually although there is the ability to generate some reports which would help.

Yes you would just draw lines on a flat plane and use the parallel projection camera and top view. Medeek is developing several extensions that will help -particularly the electrical which is under developement:


to be honest though I think something like “Home Designer Architectural” would be both less expensive and easier to set up if one does not need the more advanced modeling capabilities of SU

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interesting. thanks for this. i have downloaded the plugin. I use SU mainly for my engineering drawings and projects but was curious to see how it is used for other projects:)

Hi lt7284
I’m an architect. I’ve been using SketchUp Pro for all of my architectural and boat design work for the past seven years (since 2012). I don’t use AutoCad at all now.
For architecture, I use a workflow where I make a 3d model of the outside of the building and draw floor plans and sections in 2d. I use scenes and styles a lot, which I then place in a Layout file. I add dimensions and notes in Layout, but not much else. I show trees, people etc. in the SketchUp model.
To answer your question… I’d recommend that you do the 2d drafting in SketchUP on the ground plane, make scenes in plan view, parallel projection, with a style that you like and then bring into Layout to add notes and dimensions.
As a 2d drafting tool I find SketchUp better and quicker than AutoCAD. I use a piece of software called ‘X Mouse Button Control’ which locks the Z plane. That enables me to do 2d drafting on a plane without having to hold the shift key whilst panning. One of my ‘wishes’ for SketchUp is for a native pan lock.
I find this way of working to be as quick as working in 2d with AutoCad.
I started using AutoCad over 30 years ago - I thnk it’s enormously overpriced and crude when compared with SkecthUP.
Some of my SketchUP stuff is on my websites:


Hi Andrew,

The X Mouse Button Control sounds interesting. Can you explain how you set this up? It looks like
X Mouse Button Control can do a variety of things. Very nice drawings BTW!

ok, here is a sample i saw off the web. The elevations are scenes from SU, but how much of the floor plan on the right was drawn in SU and how much was done in LO?

Is it safe to assume that the fans, electrical wire(dashed lines), recipticals, smoke detectors, showers, and toilets were drawn in SU? then in LO, dims were added, labels, text, and side notes.

I can also safely assume you can change the line color from dark black to light gray for things like the tubs, showers, fans, wire?


If the desired workflow is two dimensional, why not use CAD software? Well, if the goal is to produce something that looks more like art, and less like a run of the mill CAD drawing. If you have been in the business for 50 years and desire a finished product that looks more like your pencil and pen drawings of yesteryear; and know that your customers were more satisfied when you handed them plans that you obviously slaved over drawing. Well, perhaps Sketchup is the tool you need. Sketchy filters, section planes, parallel projection and intersect will all be your friends. Try to start by working on your templates and components. I suggest creating your own symbols, and make them stylized enough to be unique to you, but standard enough to be understood. A combination of Layout and Sketchup is how you do it. Except no one can tell you how it is done. It is up to you to take the tools available and determine the work flow that works for you. Remember at this point that what you are drawing is your art and passion, and let your work reflect it.

It’s difficult to say for sure although the author could probably tell you.

They could have been. They might also be scrapbook entities which might have been drawn in SketchUp, LayOut, or some other program which were positioned over the floor plan in LayOut.

Dashed lines for electrical were likely drawn in LayOut although they could have been drawn in SketchUp. Prior to the release of SU2019, I would have drawn those curves in SketchUp putting them on a separate layer and displayed in a scene separate from the floor plan. Then in LO, I would have stacked the viewports and exploded the one for the electrical dashes and edit the line style to show them as dashed and gray. Now I’d just set their layer to show dashes in SketchUp and set the Edge Color as needed for the style associated with that scene.

Most likely that’s right. Large text blocks might RTF text files. Tables could be inserted XLSX files.

It can be done. Where depends on where the lines are. If they are in a viewport, that’s a style setting made for the scene in SketchUp. If they are LayOut drawing entities, that would be done in Shape Style.

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AWESOME! i think i have a better understanding now of all of this. Since im on 2018 pro, i do not have the nifty layer style for dashed line.

as for scrapbooks, im still learning abut those. If i draw a shape or something in SU, how do i save it as a scrapbook for layout?


It is quite possible that the floor plan is actually a horizontal section through the 3D model, with dimensions and other annotations added in LayOut. Things like door swing arcs can either be part of the 3D door component (possibly on their own layer) or added in LO.

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You might look here for sources or ideas on LayOut Scrapbooks for architectural drawings.