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Last updated on July 02, 2019

VU.CITY and planning applications

VU.CITY is often used for reviewing planning applications due to its ability to rapidly generate accurate views of proposals in context. As a result, planning officers may ask you to provide 3D models in support of your application.

VU.CITY users have the ability to extrude a massing model based on the details outlined in your application. However, it may be more beneficial for your application that you provide an accurate model of your own to portray your scheme in its best light.

File requirements

VU.CITY supports models in the FBX format (2011-2016).

See here for further details.


For the UK, geolocation should conform to the British National Grid (GBOS). For Ireland, geolocation should conform to Irish Grid (ITM).

Geolocating an FBX file is not the same as geolocating a CAD/BIM file.

Please see here if you use a dedicated modelling package such as 3ds Max, Maya, or Blender.

Please see here if you use a CAD / BIM package such as Revit, AutoCAD, Rhino, Vectorworks, Microstation, or SketchUp.


Some modelling/CAD/BIM packages allow you to set a “Project North” that is different from True North. Due to the non-standarised way these various packages export to FBX, VU.CITY is unable to reliably read this information. Please therefore use True North, and manually rotate your model in the orientation you wish it to sit in the real world.


When sending a model to your planning officer, please include the following information:

– Which modelling application you used;
– The scale you have built the model in (VU.CITY supports mm, cm, m, in, and ft);
– Your geolocation coordinates and AOD.