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Library Research Guides

Geospatial Data

Subject guide to finding and using geospatial data. Includes tutorials for using elevation data to make contours, and using aerial imagery layers to output imagery even more efficiently than Google Earth Pro can.

Making 3D, .dwg Contour Lines

This tutorial guides you through the process of creating 3D contour lines in .dwg format for use in CAD, Rhino, 3DS, or other .dwg friendly programs.

This tutorial was designed for architecture students, or others who want to leverage existing GIS data on elevation/topography, but who want to subset and convert that information for use in other 3D modelling programs.

Sections include:

  • Get a digital elevation model (DEM) for the United States or Mexico locations
  • Using ArcMap for the first time
  • Creating contour lines
  • Working with projection to ensure your .dwg uses the units you want
  • Converting contour lines to 3D
  • Exporting to CAD