Accurate Location Data

I am using Sketchup Make 2017. I would like to sketch a house on an empty lot in my neighborhood, but I’m having a hard time trying to figure out how to import the lot’s dimensions and shape accurately.

I work for a civil engineering company, so I’ve been able to access the .shp file, but when I import it using an extension the lot is only 10’ wide. Google earth ruler is telling me its closer to 128’ at approx the same location.

The File > Geolocation> add location doesn’t work because it doesn’t show me the borders of the lot in question. I don’t need geo coordinates, just the shape and size of the lot.

Any ideas?

a bit of an update. I used the geolocation in Sketchup to add the location. I then moved the lot parcel in question from the.shp file to the same spot and scaled it to match the geolocation.

The problem is this: The street size and shape of the geolocation isn’t even close to the actual size/shape of the street in google earth. plus, the geolocation information doesn’t show any lot information, so its basically worthless and innacurate.

Sketchup/Trimble: please work hard to bring more accurate data into the program. it was such a huge advantage to have it available!

here are the two images to show they aren’t similar

You need to be using SketchUp Pro, not Make.

what does Pro give me that I don’t have now?

More useful location information and access to better quality imagery through Placemaker II.

If you’re using SketchUp in your work as your first post implies, it also gives you the license to use SketchUp commercially. SketchUp Make is essentially for hobby use.


Whoa, $695 is not a price that I, an at-home user, would pay just to get a somewhat accurate location to sketch on top of…especially when it was previously included.

I’m not using it for work, I’m a hobbyist who is daydreaming about building a house on an empty lot in my neighborhood. I would love to model that house using somewhat realistic measurements but that’s not something I can currently do

Well, you can thank Google for that. That ability was lost when Google shut down their API for Google Maps.

SketchUp Make is the last Make version so you won’t see any changes to the Geo-location features going forward.

The type of accurate information you need won’t come from Google Earth or SU’s Add Location feature.

Obtain an image of the Plat Survey from your local government.
Import the Plat image (as an Image entity) into SU and scale it to real-world size.
Accurately draw the 2D lot lines on top of the plat.

Tip: Start with a new SU file. Do not geo-locate the model.

Then … draw in the other necessary information:
• Required building setbacks from the lot lines.
• Limits of ‘architectural projections’ such as roof overhangs.
• Existing Utilities below ground and above ground.
• Utility Easements
• Make note of any restrictions/requirements/limitations:
Examples: Building floor area, building type, height, exterior finish, soil conditions.

Last but not least, become familiar with the Building Codes applicable to the location of the home.

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@zdonaldson, for accurate shadows you’ll also need to input the longitude/latitude coordinates, set time zone etc. And set solar north!