Sketchup with georeferenced data

Hey there, I’m using sketchup to work with city size models on the mac. I have the requirements to load additional data into the model at a later time- that has to be placed into the right place without manual scaling and moving it to the right place. That’s why I need the geolocation to be exact.

I get most of the files in gis shape files - but I can export them into georeferenced dwg/dxf or kmz files that sketchup pro should be able to read.

When I import the dwg with the with the option to keep „Point of origin“ the model is far from sketchups Axes wich leads to errors to display and finding the model.

How do I deal with (large and complex) models that are far away from origin? Is there any good advise?
Does it help to change the geolocation in the sketchup model information?

The kmz file does not import at all… „Import failed“, although it is displayed correct in Google earth pro…

I couldn’t find any good shp plugin/extension that could handle complex files…There used to be an old Windows Only Sketchup 8 Plugin

Any recommendations are welcome, thank you!


A few items:

Question: Does the 3d kmz contain collada models (.dae) or is it pure kml xml? The SketchUp kmz importer only imports collada based KMZ files.

Question… Are you planning on taking your finished SU model and putting it into another software? ie… as long as the future added geometry is located in the correct location relative to your city model, is there any need to preserve the original location?

There are methods to correct the far Point of Origin issue and there may be ways to locate the future additional geometry after the fact. I just want to keep your eventual goal in mind before dishing out workflows that might come to a dead end in your use case.

One additional question… In the data sets you are using, is there a possibility of creating/using a specific piece of geometry that would serve as an alignment “benchmark”?


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Hello CD,

thanks for your reply. The kmz does in fact only contain line data without dae, so I know the reason it is not imported right. Exporting the kmz from a 2d gis I guess I have no option that it will contain an dae content.

Actually I don’t need the city model to be exported in another software. To be able to show it in Google Earth at the right position would be nice though. I would like not to define a point of reference, because for example if I try to load a tree layer into the model - I do not have anything already in the model to reference it with. I got the feeling, that it is often also imported in the wrong scale so I have to scale and relocate it - wich takes a lot of time with complex models… Markus