CityCAD for Planning Teams

CityCAD is a proven city information modelling solution for exploring, testing and communicating urban masterplans.

Unlike other CAD and GIS software, it was created for urban planners from the beginning, and makes it easy to create 3D models using tried and tested building types and urban typologies.

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What is CityCAD?

Screenshot of CityCAD 3.0

CityCAD is a conceptual city-information-modelling solution.

It allows you to quickly sketch a 3D spatial model of a masterplan and will automatically estimate quantities.

These quantities can include planning data such as floor areas, residential unit mix and parking standards, as well as environmental, liveability and viability indicators.

It can be used to quickly test the capacity, impact and viability of different approaches to a development site.

Why CityCAD?


Push zero-carbon design back up the priority list where it belongs.

Analysis of operational and embodied carbon in conceptual masterplans has been an integral part of our CityCAD software since its launch over ten years ago. We can also help you integrate analysis with your own models and data.

Pace of change

Planning authorities are under pressure to react instantaneously to an unpredictable and constantly changing environment where employment, mobility, service delivery and communications are evolving all the time.

CityCAD can help you respond more quickly to requirements and test a large number of options with greater confidence.


In a globalized world people, organizations and capital are increasingly mobile, and fierce competition now exists between cities to attract them.

CityCAD’s focus on best practice design and its unique liveability analysis features can help give your city a competitive advantage.


CityCAD is a proven way of communicating complex planning issues to both technical stakeholders and non-specialist audiences.

It will help you communicate a vision, predict benefits, report to elected representatives, and maintain trust in the ability of a democratic planning process to deliver quality design. 


Collaboration across specialisms and sectors is essential to successful placemaking. When launched in 2008, CityCAD was the first major CAD solution to bring together spatial design, planning, environmental and financial analysis. 

The latest version CityCAD 3.0 makes it easier for teams to collaborate on an urban model.

Best practice

Best practice in urban design can be elusive, but CityCAD was designed from scratch as a conceptual urban modelling tool.

Tried-and-tested urban block typologies and street types are built in into the software and a growing library of components will offer a short-cut to best practice in your designs.

What can you do with CityCAD?

1. Explore

Import base information such as DXF drawings or aerial photography, then sketch streets, spaces and buildings. Click to place objects such as local energy centres and bus stops.

2. Test

CityCAD will automatically and instantaneously analyze your model and estimate quantities such as GFA and units, allowing you to quickly test whether an idea meets your requirements.

3. Communicate

Use pre-set views to navigate through your 3D model and explain your design. You can also make changes in real time to answer 'What if?' questions and inform debate about options.

UK Planning Team Package

From 11 February 2020, we are pleased to announce a new package for planning policy teams in the UK.

This licence includes:

  • On-site installation and training.
  • Review of monitoring and other requirements.
  • Project and model setup assistance.
  • CityCAD site licence for up to 50 PCs.
  • 3 × ½-day follow-up site visits to provide support during each year of your subscription.
  • Dedicated technical support contact.

Installation and training

One of our consultants will work with your technical staff on site to install CityCAD and create accounts for your team members.

We will provide training for both planning staff and IT administrators, explaining how to manage users, manage projects, change configuration settings, manage land uses, build CityCAD models.

We can also describe how CityCAD can be used to share and discuss models with colleagues and other stakeholders.

Review requirements

We will review your requirements, whether it is creating conceptual layouts for new masterplans, testing site capacities, or reviewing existing policies, and configure CityCAD accordingly.

If the functionality you need is not available in the standard version of CityCAD, we can prepare options for customizing the solution.

We will also discuss your annual monitoring policies and requirements so that CityCAD can generate information outputs in a useful form.

Project and model setup

We will work with you on site to set up projects and models of individual development sites.

As part of this, we can import your existing mapping or survey data on to the ground in your CityCAD model. You can then sketch streets, buildings and add models on top of this base.

If you have 3D models of the surrounding area in DXF or a similar format, we can also import these into CityCAD to provide context to your development sites.

For more information, or to arrange a demonstration at your office, please contact us at