Site Plan 101 Information 

What is the purpose of a Site Plan ?

Site plans are an important part of any design, building or landscape process. Most plans are used to show the intended use and proposed changes to a site. When building or planning approvals are required, site plans are the best way for Local Government Bodies or Private Certifiers to know how the changes will impact on your site during their assessments, therefor enabling them to assess if any Building or Local Laws are triggered.

More simply, a site plan could be used to map out some landscaping and slope changes and how these changes would impact on your house block and outdoor areas.

What types of Site Plans are there ?

There are normally two types of site plans –

  1. Existing Site Plan – A snapshot of how the site is “NOW” and before any works or changes have commenced.

  2. Proposed site plan – This plan shows the changes that are going to be made and how the site will be impacted upon completion of the project.

Who Can draw a Site plan ?

Depending on the purpose of projects and building classification from a house to a shed or garage, but normally a draftsman, engineer or designer will provide a site plan with your working drawings.

However in the shed and garage industry Home owners are able to provide a hand drawn sketch providing the key information required.

How are Site Plans Drawn ?

Most plans provided today a drawn in Computer Aided Design (CAD) software. CAD software has been able to streamline the process for professionals, and especially with cloud base storage drives e.g. Google Drive – has made assess to documents immediate and available from any location.

Although some plans are still provided hand drawn. If a site plan is presented with all the required information there is no reason why it has to be drawn in CAD.

What is normally shown on a Site Plan?
  • the shape of your block

  • external boundaries

  • countour lines and height variations

  • size of the block – drawn using a typical scale i.e 1:100 etc.

  • Scale Block

  • Orientation i.e – A north point or marker is typical

  • Location of your block e.g Street address or GEO Co-ordinates

  • Exact locations to existing items on your site like buildings, trees, diveways etc.

  • Proposed new buildings, structures or landscaping

  • Easements

  • Existing Stormwater and sewer pipes

  • CAD plans usually have a title block that provides all the relevant information

Are there any Free tools to use when creating your plan ?

There are an extensive range of tools that are available, but really you’ll only need a few of these.

The easiest tools to use (we are not paid to recommend these tools) –

1. Google Maps is a great place to start. You can search your address and get a great birdseye view of your block and surrounding streets. Google Maps offers some other great features that help you get information for your block

  • Satellite Views
  • Steet Views
  • Globe Views
  • and Scale Views

Some businesses use screen shots of each to use on your site plan for additional information when required, but would be important to appropriately reference Google for any Copyright Infringements.

  1. Free 2d CAD – DRAFTSIGHT

CAD can take some time to get used to and additional learning, but is a great skill to have and will be very useful for future projects.

  1. Free 3D – Sketchup Personal.

Draw any shape, Import trees and many other items. Sketchup is worth checking out if you would prefer to view your project in 3d.