Import DXF (AutoCAD)

AutoCAD DXF (Drawing Exchange Format) is a legacy format originating in the CAD industry to exchange 2D vector data. CityEngine imports the following entity types for DXF:

  • Shapes—Circle, LwPolyline (must be closed), Polyline (must be either closed or polyface mesh), and Insert
  • Graph segments—Line, Arc, Circle, Polyline, LwPolyline, and Insert

DXF import allows you to browse layers and individual entities contained in the .dxf file. You can select the entities to import by dragging them.

Import options

For DXF import, the following options are available:



Click Browse to open a dialog box and select a .dxf file to import. After opening a file, the DXF entities are automatically classified as graph segment or shape and moved to the containers on the right.


In the x- and y- offset fields, you can specify an offset to translate the data before importing. This can be useful to center the imported data and to avoid floating point precision problems. Click the Center button to automatically compute the offset of the selected DXF entities.


When changing the set of objects in the entity listings, the offset may also change. If this occurs, click Center again.


Scale is the size factor that is applied to the selected entities.

Entity Listings

In the container on the left, all entities contained in the .dxf file are listed. Entities that can be imported as shapes can be moved to the container at the lower right. All entities in this container are imported as shapes. Entities can be moved between and inside containers by dragging them.


Each entity is marked with an icon on the left indicating whether it can be imported as a graph segment, shape, or both.

  • Graph only Graph only
  • Shape only Shape only
  • Graph or shape Graph or shape
  • Entity cannot be imported Entity cannot be imported

To delete entities on the right, click Del.

Graph settings

The following graph settings are available:


Run Generate Bridges Tool after Import

When enabled, the Generate Bridges tool is run on a subsequent wizard page.

Run Simplify Graph Tool after Import

When enabled, the Simplify Graph tool is run on a subsequent wizard page.

Run Graph Cleanup Tool after Import

Depending on the DXF data, it may be necessary to clean up the graph segments after import. If enabled, the Cleanup Graph tool is run on a subsequent wizard page.

Create Street/Intersection Shapes from Graph

When enabled, the shape creation parameter of the graph nodes and segments is enabled and street shapes are created.

Create Block/Lot Shapes from Graph

When enabled, the shape creation parameter of potentially created street blocks is enabled and shapes are created.


Presets can be saved and applied.