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Using OpenRoads in InRoads - Project Defaults and Alignment Features

The NHDOT CAD/D staff is not proficient in all aspects of InRoads and is only documenting specific procedures as needed.
InRoads has been set up to work within the SS4 Workspace and utilize the projects MX file locations. Using InRoads as the native product to create and transfer horizontal and vertical alignments simplifies the process from MX. InRoads has no problems with USSF and alignments can have longer names than the four character MX label. InRoads uses the same dgnlib's for most features but has different Horizontal Geometry feature definitions pointing to InRoads native functions for auto annotation and use of InRoads tools for easier profile generation.


Browse to the project's mx\imperial_styles or the openroads\data folder and verify that the file exists. If it does not exist you can copy it from the workspace\standards\data\feature_definitions\ folder.

Open InRoads

Hit on the InRoads icon to open InRoads. Select the Project, User, Interface and drawing (12345-Geometry), click Open. Open the Default model, and use Level display to display the existing detail.

InRoads utilizes InRoads Explorer for its native functionality. If the Explorer is not visible, Right-Click and hold in the Default view and select Explorer Show/Hide to un-hide the Explorer panel.

InRoads Project Setup

Set Project Defaults box

From the InRoads Explorer Panel, select File > Project Defaults to open the Set Projects Defaults panel. Select New and type in the projects name and number, OK. If the project was set up previously select the project name from the Configuration Name drop-down and hit Apply.

Fill in the fields show in the sample image here. Many of the paths are for native InRoads functionality which will not be used and do not need to have values. After filling in the entries shown, hit Apply then Close. Remember to check that the correct configuration is loaded each time you open InRoads. Copy and paste paths or use the browse button to select folders or files after making an entry active. The file may need to be copied into your project. See the Prep section above for file paths.

View the InRoads Explorer. Along the top there are many drop-downs containing the native InRoads tools. These will be used to draw and annotate profiles. First some settings/files will need to be created and selected. The three tabs on the bottom left Surfaces, Geometry and Preferences are used to define some active settings and files to be used.

InRoads Open - Custom toolbox

A Toolbar with two tools is helpful when using InRoads. One to Open the Inroads Explorer and the other to Open the Set Project Defaults box. The Tool bar can be opened by Tools > Tool Boxes scroll down and check InRoads Open - Custom. The tool box can be docked for use.

InRoads Alignment Features

The Feature Definition Toggle Bar allows the user to select a Feature Definition once and it be used until a new Feature is specified. Find it from the Task menu, select Civil Tools > General Geometry (or Horizontal Geometry) > Feature Definition Toggle Bar. However, selecting a Feature Definition from the Toggle Bar does not automatically make the feature active. Therefore it is necessary to toggle the Use Active Feature Definition button on to set the active feature. Similar to other OpenRoads buttons, this button changes from a White background to an Amber background when toggled ON.

Feature Definition Toggle bar

Inroads dropdown feature list

To select a Feature Definition, click the Feature Dropdown and expand, then select the appropriate feature such as Mainline Alignment-Ir. When creating an Alignment by Elements, we recommend selecting the Alignment Elements feature from the Ali n Road Design / Road. When creating a Complex Alignment by either the Complex By PI or the Complex By Elements command, select an Alignment feature definition with the -Ir designation that identifies the type of alignment being created.

InRoads alignment features are set to auto-annotate. When creating the alignment; stations, bearings and PC/PT points will automatically be labeled. Stations are created on separate levels for Major Stations every 500' as well as the minor stations every 100' and tick marks every 50'.

New Hampshire Department of Transportation
PO Box 483  |  7 Hazen Drive  |  
Concord, NH  |  03302-0483
Tel: 603.271.3734  |  Fax: 603.271.3914