Leveraging Civil 3D for Turnpike Maintenance and Renovations

Pennsylvania Turnpike

Autodesk Solutions: Civil 3D

Services Provided: Drafting, Mapping, 3D Modeling, Content Development, Workflow Development.

Other Professional Services: Application Development, CAD/BIM Standards Development, Workflow Documentation, Compliance Requirement Development.

Customer Challenge

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC) required a system that could identify and locate roadway conditions from a central location. Additionally, challenges with data management and variations in project deliverables and less than optimal design review workflows created a situation where design errors and omissions could occur.

Project Goals

PTC’s primary objective was to implement digital models as a requirement for project bidding. This would provide the foundation for a more streamlined approach to ongoing upkeep and modifications and bring PTC into the modern age of Building Information Modeling (BIM). As a global BIM and EAM consultant and Autodesk Platinum Partner, Microdesk was uniquely suited to assist PTC with this goal.


Microdesk introduced PTC to the power of Civil 3D and leveraged the platform to develop master alignment, right-of-way, mile post and travelway drawings for the 550+ miles of turnpike. These designs were then used to develop intelligent 3D models of corridors and drainage systems. Part of this process also resulted in the development of workflows for the creation of sole source record retention for the master model and streamlining the population of GIS and asset management systems.

Business Outcomes

The BIM designs that were developed in Civil 3D became the primary data location of all intelligent models in unified standards, coordinates and software platforms. This new process also streamlined the flow of data from design through to construction and asset management. The Civil 3D models can even be imported into InfraWorks for more in-depth project visualization.


The partnership between Microdesk and PTC allowed for the creation of a modern system of mapping and maintaining a vast amount of heavily trafficked roadways. Creating BIM standards for deliverables allowed PTC to simplify the project lifecycle. Microdesk also embedded the level of intelligence required for these models to feed GIS data into facility management systems. Overall, these solutions provided a reduction in rework, easier access to data and an integrated system between departments.

A Note on Sustainability 

Prior to digitizing project delivery processes, PTC used printed documents to track initiative progress. By transitioning to a collaborative platform and managing projects within Civil 3D, PTC was able to greatly reduce their paper usage leading to less administrative waste.

*Microdesk is doing business as Symetri and has changed their name as of 6/26/23. 

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