How to import shape files?


I need to import 3D shp files created by the ESRI software.
Does anyone know a good way to get this done ?

thank you for your help


Just searching Food4Rhino for shape shp shows there are two plugins that should let you do that: Meerkat and @it.

thanks Wim… i will check it out!

meerkat seems to work only for 2d file as far as i understand, so that won’t work…

still testing @it, but no success so far…

is there maybe a 3rd party conversion tool to get these horrible shape files into something like 3ds or dwg or obj…?



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You should be able to import them into QGIS (open source) and then export them as something Rhino-usable… Otherwise, there is RhinoTerrain, but that is rather expensive… --Mitch

It would be better if Rhino could read shapefiles directly. I see Rhino used for urban planning more and more…

We thought it might be cool if Rhino ran inside ARCGIS: DOne right this could give everyone the flexibility to control the transfer.

There is also You can download shapefiles of OpenStreetMap from BBBike. A workflow is to download an OSM file directly from OpenStreetMap and import the data using Elk along with USGS elevation data for topos.

Yes but this requires arcgis. I don’t need it , i won’t install a software just to convert a file

Sometimes shapefiles are provided by municipalities, those files include future proposals, additional data which is not on OpenStreetMap.

Elk is very unreliable. In many situations those files are very large in size.

Much more easy is to have shp import in rhino. It is an open format, no?

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Hi Scott, I was wondering how feasible it would be to integrate Rhino.Inside into QGIS? ArcGIS is great but many find the cost of licencing prohibitive. There seems to be a gap for integrating GIS and the AEC tool ecosystem, Rhino.Inside.QGIS could make a big difference I feel.

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Because QGIS does not have .net SDK running Rhino.inside gets tricky. Much of the problem is related to this discussion:

But it does not mean it is impossible. I might first figure out if rhino.inside can be loaded thru the QMap Python interface. Although no interface would show, there might be a lot you could do with geometry and files.

I would pose a question to the rhino.inside forum here to work thru the possibilities. Our developers may have a better idea on how feasible it is.

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