Novapoint Alignment Design is one of the most central and comprehensive functions within the digital design of road and railway alignments. Several flexible functions of the module Alignment Design give the user full freedom to find the optimal horizontal and vertical geometry. With this module, a road or railway is placed according to the terrain and at the same time, different requirements for technical as well as the community are considered.

Novapoint Alignment Design is based on the calculation routine NADB. Within this calculation routine, there are a number of functions that make the design of primary lines, edge lines, tracks, etc., more effective and easier.

In Novapoint Alignment Design, horizontal and vertical alignments are designed using the same method, program, and calculations. The program allows the user to work on:

All the above option plus a number of other functionality makes the alignment design efficient and provides designing with ease.

User Interface

From the main dialog box Alignment Design; all the functions for designing the horizontal and vertical geometry of the alignment can be accessed.


When a horizontal alignment is initiated, the alignment's data is displayed in the dialog box on the tab Input H.

Horizontal and Vertical Drawing

Customizing the User Interface

Customize the user interface by minimizing the number of tabs (Input H/V, Result H/V, Errors H/V, etc.) to be displayed in the user interface using the dialog Options.

Customize the tabs Input H and Input V by turning off any of the columns Parameter, End Radius, all the columns of Coordinates in Input H (E1, N1, E2, and N2), and all the columns of Coordinates in Input V (Chainage1, Level1, Chainage2, and Level2) using the dialog Options.

Toggle Options in Status Bar

The status bar of the user interface displays the following information from left to right:

Horizontal Alignment Design


First Chainage: The first chainage is automatically put to 0.0 at the first element's fixed point. This can be changed with the function Start Chainage, which can be accessed from the menu Object.

Design: The linear chainage direction is marked on the drawing with an arrow at every element transition. The direction of the alignment can be changed with the function Turn, which can be accessed from the menu Modify.

Figure 1: There is an arrow at every transition

Designing several Alignments simultaneously

Several sessions of alignment design can be done simultaneously by opening several alignment dialogs. This gives the option of editing individual alignments independently. This is useful when designing an intersection or roundabout.

Every main dialog refers to one single alignment, but by prompting another main dialog a different construction line from another main dialog can be the input data for the new main dialog. This is mainly applicable for horizontal alignment. The same method can be used for the vertical alignment but before this can be done the horizontal alignment must be designed before proceeding to the vertical alignment.

Offset - Horizontal Alignment Containing Clothoid

It is geometrically impossible to find an exact parallel copy of one clothoid.

The tolerance from a perfect parallel alignment becomes in the area of 0.01 - 0.5 meter

Accuracy with several consecutive clothoids

Method for offsetting a transition (clothoid) element

Method for offsetting a number of transitions (clothoid) for example reverse transitions (clothoid)

Adjacent adjustments can be done to the alignment, where there are consecutive transitions (clothoid). Try and change the relationship between the transition (clothoid) parameters, but it is recommended that the elements be locked before and after the transition (clothoid) combination.


Vertical Alignment Design

Designing the vertical geometry can only be done on an existing horizontal alignment. Before creating the vertical alignment, the horizontal alignment is to be saved to the active database (Digital Terrain Model). Quadri model cannot handle "free" profiles (vertical alignments); they always are linked to a horizontal alignment in the database.

Run the function Vertical Drawing from the menu Window in the floating window Alignment Design Professional. It's a prerequisite that the Overview - Horizontal Geometry is already read.

When the vertical alignment design function, Vertical Drawing, is activated, a new temporary drawing file is created automatically to house the vertical alignment and the terrain profile. The terrain profile is calculated along the horizontal alignment. This drawing is a temporary drawing, reserved only for the current vertical alignment.

The scale of the vertical drawing file is in relation to the scale of the horizontal drawing file, determined through the function Scale of the menu Novapoint.

Longitudinal Terrain Profile Calculation

When the function Vertical Drawing is activated, the longitudinal profile is calculated automatically. The longitudinal profile is updated continuously if the horizontal alignment is edited.

The longitudinal profile is represented with pre-defined line types.

Longitudinal profile in the vertical drawing can be calculated either from terrain model or road model.

Terrain from Terrain Model:

Terrain from Road Model (when the current alignment is the active alignment of the road model):

Additional Features of Vertical Drawing:

When the current line is a "free" line any of the abovementioned methods can be adopted.

Updating terrain profile

If the horizontal geometry is changed, modified, edited, then the new terrain profile along the horizontal alignment is calculated automatically. This can take a few seconds, so it is recommended that only small changes be done to the horizontal geometry when the vertical drawing is open.

To toggle the longitudinal terrain profile calculation and presentation in vertical drawing; double-click the field TERRAIN in the status bar of the user interface. Alternatively, run the function Display. You can also use normal CAD layer functions.


Help lines in the grid are generated automatically. The X-axis is equivalent to the linear length in the grid. The Y-axis is equivalent to the absolute elevation in the grid.

The setting is done from the function Scale of the menu Novapoint (the scale in the vertical drawing is in relation to the scale in the horizontal drawing).

The program, depending on the zooming grade, updates the size on the grid, text automatically.

Signature in the grid

Chainage and elevation are displayed and updated by the program depending on the zooming grade.

Points of tangency – horizontal alignment

The horizontal alignments points of tangency are displayed in the grid of the vertical drawing. Whether element signature is to be displayed or not, can be controlled through CAD layer control. The element signature is drawn on the horizontal alignment layer.

The construction lines for the vertical alignment

The initial principal for designing the vertical geometry is identical to the design procedure of the horizontal geometry, but with the following additional comments:

As a starting point for the design, CAD lines, polylines, and arcs can be utilized to initiate vertical alignment, or lines and curves can be directly inserted through the table Input V in the main floating window Alignment Design Professional.

Angular Points

The construction method of calculating angular points is often used in vertical geometry, even though the methodology for constructing the vertical geometry is almost identical to the construction methodology of horizontal geometry.

The calculate angular point methodology is simulated by giving one element the following section classification:

The first element's second fixed point is placed on the third element's first fixed point. The common fixed point can be edited as an angular point.

There are different functions to create or remove angular points. These functions can be found in the Modify menu and through the shortcut menu in the drawing (right-click menu).

Toggle between horizontal and vertical drawing

It is possible to work alternately between the horizontal and vertical alignment.

One can change from a vertical to a horizontal drawing with the aid of alignment design functions or activating the drawings by pointing at the desired drawing. Change projection can be done by activating the respective Input table in the main floating window, which changes active drawing automatically.

Close the vertical construction drawing

The menu choice Close Vertical Drawing from the menu Window closes the vertical drawing window.

When Novapoint Alignment Design is closed, the vertical drawing is automatically closed as well and deleted from the hard drive. The drawing is only a temporary construction drawing.

When the program is terminated with the function Ok - Draw, the vertical geometry is saved on the horizontal alignment in the database as well as on the horizontal alignment in CAD. The temporary vertical drawing is not saved but terminates and gets deleted from the hard drive.

Novapoint Road Drawing Generation functions are used to create profile projections, drawings, etc. With the Alignment design, only the actual alignment is created not drawings.


The Novapoint Alignment Design is accessed from the following places inside Novapoint Road in the CAD environment:

MOUS_ICO Toolbar: Alignment Design

MOUS_ICO Menu: Road > Alignment Design


When the function Alignment Design is activated, the dialog box Alignment Design will pop up and be placed on top of CAD as a floating window. In the dialog box the menu Object unfolds several options of selecting the starting point/element of the alignment.

Novapoint Alignment Design contains functions to design a three-dimensional alignment. This is performed in traditional fashion by editing the alignment in the horizontal and vertical planes.

Novapoint Alignment Design is comprised of the following parts:

Design Standard

To define design standards, refer to the topic Design Standard.

To Start a new Alignment

To start a new alignment, refer to the following topics:

Save the Alignment

To save the alignment, refer to the following topics:

Retrieving the Alignment for further design

To retrieving the alignments, refer the following topics:

Editing the Alignments

Refer to the topics of Edit from the table of contents.

Modify the Alignment

Refer to the topics of Modify from the table of contents.

Design Line View Options

Refer to the topic Display.

Calculation Options and Customizing the User-Interface

Refer to the topic Options.

Longitudinal profile calculation and presentation options refer to the topic Terrain.

Shortcut Menus

Refer to the topic Shortcut Menu.

The table of contents of this file follows the menu of the user interface.

There are many more advanced design options, which can be found in this help file by following the menu of the user interface.