Changing the Landscape of Irrigation Design Tools

Posted by Joanna Weedlun on 11/7/16 11:10 AM  |  4 min read time

Irrigation design is a rapidly growing market within the landscape industry, but many modern design tools don’t meet this expanding demand, forcing you to switch between different software programs. That’s why we included groundbreaking irrigation tools in Vectorworks Landmark 2017, empowering you to design your entire site, from GIS data management in larger contexts to the details of irrigation piping, valves, and hydrozones, all in one program.



But you don’t have to take our word for it; Kellan Vincent, licensed irrigator, project lead and vice president at Vincent Landscapes, Inc. was also frustrated with his workflows before the release of Vectorworks 2017. “We had to switch back and forth between programs in order to accomplish all of the tasks required of us, which made for a really irritating workflow,” he explained. After designing landscapes using the 3D modeling capabilities of Vectorworks Landmark, Vincent and his team would use Land F/X’s Irrigation F/X module to create irrigation plans. A few problems arose with this method, one being the that the transition from working in a site-specific BIM software to a general CAD software meant that information was lost and that iterative work had to be done.

Vincent and his team didn’t want to give up the powerful parametric, 3D modeling and BIM capabilities available in Vectorworks software, so they were eager to try out the new irrigation tools. “I was shocked by just how well it worked,” Vincent exclaimed. “We do a lot of Digital Terrain Modeling and we would have lost that capability by switching to a general CAD software. Now, our entire design process can be managed within Vectorworks, saving me time and creating better, more information-rich projects."

Commenting on the BIM capabilities of the irrigation tools in terms of calculating flow rates, Vincent loves that you can simply click on a pipe to check its flow rate in the Vectorworks Object Info palette. “Designing irrigation systems is much easier using BIM,” explains Vincent. “Having that functionality where I can click and see flow rates and the design pressure versus actual pressure based on the friction loss is really cool and helpful.”



These simplified calculations improve Vincent’s ability to design for sustainability. Because it’s now easier and faster to calculate water use and adjust your designs based on that data, it takes designers like Vincent less time and effort to tweak a project to achieve optimum water efficiency.

crosswinds-irrigation-plan Irrigation plan courtesy of Kellan Vincent.

And even though irrigation tools were only just introduced a few months ago, Vincent and his team have already executed projects using them. “On a recent residential landscape project, we used the tools to create an irrigation network that had a little bit of everything,” said Vincent. “We had that system installed a couple weeks ago and the flow rates and pressures match closely to the Landmark calculations. It was great to give my guys a solid, legible irrigation plan because they could just go and lay it all out easily.”

To Vincent, the true power of Vectorworks Landmark’s irrigation tools is their integrated functionality with all of the other features of the software. “With irrigation, you really need each element to work or the system breaks down,” Vincent insisted. “All of the tools function very well, and I really appreciate the simplicity of how all of the tools fit together.”

If you want to learn more about our new irrigation tools and how to use them, head over to our Vectorworks 2017 – Irrigation Design tutorial playlist, or check out this webinar exploring irrigation workflows. And, check out all of the great new capabilities of Vectorworks 2017 here.

Topics: Irrigation, Irrigation Design Tools in Vectorworks 2017, irrigation piping, water efficiency, 3D Modeling, BIM, CAD, Digital Terrain Model, GIS, hydrozones, Irrigation Design in Vectorworks Landmark 2017, Irrigation Tools, Kellan Vincent, Land F/X, Landscape, Vectorworks 2017 - Irrigation Design, #Vectorworks2017, Vincent Landscapes Inc.

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