Creating a Graphics-Only Design File for Plan Production - PL2201

From DelDOT CADD Wiki


The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) Survey Section typically provides topographical survey data in two MicroStation design files (DGN), as listed below.

  • FS01_xxxx_Graphics.dgn, where “xxxx” is the project specific number and/or contract title information. This design file contains the survey line work (graphics) exclusively. This file is to be utilized for plan preparation type work such as annotating survey features (curbs, trees, pavement materials, etc.) as well as rotating survey feature cells to the correct orientation (signs, drainage inlets, utility guy wires, etc.)
  • FS01_xxxx_Terrain.dgn, where “xxxx” is the project specific number and/or contract title information. This design file contains the survey line work (graphics), survey field book(s) and existing terrain data. This file is to be utilized when it is necessary to include the existing terrain data in a particular workflow such as corridor modeling, creating cross sections, etc.,

If two separate design files were not provided as mentioned above, the following workflow can be utilized to create a design file that contains the survey line work (graphics) for plan production purposes. This workflow shall be performed using OpenRoads Designer (ORD) 2021_R2 ( or later.


  1. In ORD, open the original survey design file containing the survey line work (graphics), field book(s), and existing terrain data.
  2. Once the design file has opened, open the Explorer dialog.
  3. PL 2201 01 01.png
  4. In the Explorer dialog, expand the Survey tab.
  5. In the Survey tab, navigate to the Field Books section which is typically found under Survey Data > Default.
  6. Right-click on the project specific field book and select Export To > DGN Graphics....
  7. PL 2201 01 02.png
  8. Select the location to save the design file and enter the design file name for the graphics file that is being created. Select Save.
  9. The survey field book is removed during the Export to Graphics process, but the existing terrain data remains.
  10. To remove the existing terrain data, navigate to the Explorer > OpenRoads Model tab in the newly created design file.
  11. Expand the active design file properties, to expose the Terrain Models present in this design file.
  12. Right-click on the terrain that is present in the active design file and select Delete to remove the terrain from the design file.
  13. PL 2201 01 03.png
  14. This design file is now ready for use in the plan production workflow.