Final Presentation


At the Final Presentation the students presented the overall 3D city model of your case study area including the following parts:

1. General overview about your case study area
Use the overview maps provided for the course and give a general overview about your area.

2. Excerpts of your Smart Code Survey
Typological overall section (p. SC19 top)
Color coded map indicating your transect zones (from your Ex04)
Most common Frontage Typologies (p. SC12) and Building Dispositions (SC14)

3.  Transect Zones (section and plan excerpts)
Description of your Transect Zones as in the survey (p. SC20/SC21 ff.)
City Engine shots per each Transect Zone of: Facades, Buildings, Blocks, Streets, Open Spaces

4. Ecotect Analysis
(use low detail mass models for your Ecotect analysis as shown in class)
Shadow Analysis (whole case study area and shadowing studies of transect typologies) [tutorial PDF]
Total Sunlight Hours (studies of transect typologies) [tutorial PDF]
Visibility Analysis (studies on 3 Points of Interest in your case study area) [tutorial PDF]

5. Visualizations
Street views and birds eye perspectives


– presentation files as PDF and .indd package
– City Engine project as .zip file
– SmartCode Catalog as PDF and indd. package


– Please use the presentation templates provided on the student server.
– The presentation should be not longer than 20min (incl. discussion).

L08 – Visualization Techniques

Lecture as slides, PDF

E06 – GIS

For the following exercises please use the map data from the schmitt-stud server.

1. Create 3 thematic maps:
Map 1: Format a building structure map.
Map 2: Format a green zone and water  map.
Map 3: Format a road, rail network map.

2. Create a map with all public facilities.

3. Use ArcMap and CityEngine to create a colored land use 3D map. Make one screen shot.

4. Make a selection in ArcMap and report the areas of all selected buildings into a sheet.

5. Use Openstreet Map to create a bike, public transport, car networks visualization in CityEngine. Make one screen shot and create a map key.

E05 – Growth Simulation

L05/06/07 – GIS / Urbanism, Systems and Models

An introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and on Urbanism, Systems and Models

Lecture as slides, GIS, Urbanism

HS2011 – New Methods in Urban Simulation – Lecture 6 from iA.

E07 – Ecotect Analysis


Ecotect Analysis offers a wide range of simulation and building energy analysis functionality that can improve performance of existing buildings and new building designs.

Link to Ecotect tutorial [PDF]


Submission till _____, _____ 2011, 09:00 by uploading to the student server
– afp://
– smb:\\\schmitt-stud

Please submit a .pdf document
Naming scheme: E07_Name1Name2… .pdf


Simulation and evaluation of the building perfomance (40 pts)

Work through the provided exercise [PDF]


  1. Import the 3d model of your area created in City Engine into Ecotect
  2. Ecotect analysis
    2.1 Daily and Annual Sun Path Diagrams (5  pts)

    a) Create diagrams for the daily and annual sun path by activating the daily and annual sun path in the shadow settings.
    b) Get detailed information on 2d diagrams.

    2.2 Shadow Analysis & Shadow Range Diagram (5 pts)
    a) Using the shadow range (Ecotect tutorial, p.6 ) find out, which parts of the area  are not shaded.
    The areas not covered with the shadow would present better spots to plant trees, which would benefit from the sun, and could provide shadows and decrease the temperature of the ground.
    For this analysis define the time period from 9am to 5pm with the intervals of 30 minutes.
    b) Verify whether the current position of the trees on your area is optimal or not.
    Analyse the existing location of the open spaces in terms of their overshadowing during the day.
    c) You can optionally display shadows on the selected objects by activating the surfaces in the 3d editor. Tag them as shaded in the shadow display tab and display shadows.  



Exercises will be graded. A not submitted exercise will be graded with “failed”.
Support requests by email are possible anytime.






E04 – Determining Urban Rules for Altstetten, Zurich

One of the principles of Transect-based planning is that certain forms and elements belong in certain environments. For example, an apartment building belongs in a more urban setting, a ranch house in a more rural setting. Some types of thoroughfares are urban in character, and some are rural. A deep suburban setback destroys the spatial enclosure of an urban street; it is out of context. These distinctions and rules don’t limit choices; they expand them. This is the antidote for the one-size-fits-all development of today.
SmartCode v9.2


Submission till Midterm-Crit on Monday, Oct 31st 2011, 09:00 by uploading to the student server
– afp://
– smb:\\\schmitt-stud

Please submit a separate inDesign package and .pdf documents of the SmartCode Catalog for Altstetten as well as some shots of your first procedural models.
Please mark each document with your names.
Naming scheme: E04_Name1Name2… .pdf


In this exercise you will combine your findings of your SmartCode Catalog with your knowledge gained in the CityEngine tutorials to set up a first procedural model on building scale.


Urban Rules for Altstetten, Zurich (30 pts)

  • Set up an overall transect through your case study area as a sequence of typologies similar to this example. Further, assign the blocks in your case study area to the corresponding transect zones and generate an overview map similar to the example provided here using the given color code. (5 pts.)
  • Use the inDesign template provided here to set up a SmartCode catalog for your case study area. This catalog will be the basis for the following implementation into CityEngine. (15 pts.)
  • Implement your findings on the main building typologies into CityEngine and set up a first procedural model on building scale according to the given examples below (10 pts.)


CE-Implementation – examples:

  1. Get a general overview of the modeling workflow for this exercise [PDF]
  2. Download the CE project and take a look at the example files [CE-Project]
  3. Consult the ‘CGA Rule Reference‘ for further details (focus on ‘CGA Shape Grammar Reference / Shape Operations’ split, extrude, and comp).


SmartCode Catalog – additional examples:
[1] transect intensities
[2] green space patterns
[3] vegetation in Altstetten


further reading:
[1] Center for Applied Transect Studies (CATS)
SmartCode Version 9.2 and manual



Exercises will be graded. A not submitted exercise will be graded with “failed”.
Support requests by email are possible anytime.

L04 – The Art of Procedural Modelling

Rule-based modelling and its applications

Lecture as slides, PDF (ca. 28 MB).

E03 – Creating a Smart Code Catalog for Altstetten, Zurich

The term “code” derives from “caudex,” which was simultaneously the trunk of a tree and set of laws. It is one of several terms clustering around the idea of power being resident in a sacred tree at the center of a traditional village. A code, then, is etymologically and functionally the trunk around which a settlement arranges itself.

Patrick Pinnell | ‘SmartCode v9.2’


Submission till Midterm-Crit on Monday, Oct 31st 2011, 09:00 by uploading to the student server
– afp://
– smb:\\\schmitt-stud

Please submit separate .doc and .pdf documents of the SmartCode Survey sheets and a .zip file with your site visit photos.
Please mark each document with your names.
Naming scheme: E03_Name1Name2… .pdf


With this exercise we start our project work in the case study area of Altstetten, Zurich.
Your work will contribute to the project on Sustainable Urban Patterns (SUPat) within the transdisciplinary National Research Programme 65 (NRP65 ‘New Urban Quality’).

A Smart Code Catalog, as introduced in Lecture 2, will be the basis for investigations on the built environment and urban qualities of the chosen perimeter.
Combining your findings of this exercise with your procedural modeling skills earned in the CityEngine tutorials in exercise 1 and 2 you will be able to set up a first CityEngine model on a building scale in the upcoming exercise 4.

At the Midterm-Crit on Oct 31st you will present both your findings as well as your implementation in CityEngine.


Site Analysis Altstetten, Zurich (30 pts)

  • Form groups of 2-4 people and choose one of the 7 case study areas. The groups will be confirmed after the lecture on Oct 10th.
  • Do a site visit with your group to your case study area.
  • Document your findings in the two task sheets “SmartCode Survey” and “Identifying and Measuring of Urban Design Qualities”, make photos during your site visit. You will make several sheets for the different blocks in your case study area and for several places to measure the urban quality there.


Overview of the Case Study Area Altstetten, Zurich:
Case Study Area

SmartCode Survey sheets:
sheet 1 – SmartCode Survey: Analysis for Transect Zone
pdf-file, word-file
sheet 2 – Identifying and Measuring Urban Design Qualities
pdf-file, word-file

Example of a SmartCode Survey:
SmartCode – Analysis of a Transect Zone – Sub-Urban


further reading:

[1] Montgomery, John (1998)
Making a city: Urbanity, vitality and urban design
Journal of Urban Design 3: 1, 93-116
[2] Ewing, Reid and Handy, Susan (2009)
Measuring the Unmeasurable: Urban Design Qualities Related to Walkability
Journal of Urban Design, 14: 1, 65-84
[3] Clemente, Otto and Ewing, Reid (2009)
Measuring Urban Design Qualities: An Illustrated Field Manual
University of Maryland, prepared for the Active Living Research Programme
[4] Center for Applied Transect Studies (CATS)
SmartCode Version 9.2 and manual


Exercises will be graded. A not submitted exercise will be graded with “failed”.
Support requests by email are possible anytime.

L03 – Collaborative City Design

Collaborative City Design is crucial for successful urban planning projects. This podcast of the lecture shows, which means for collaboration exist and how these techniques may be coupled with generative city modeling approaches.

Lecture as slides, PDF (ca. 15 MB).