vaSpace wishes

Here are a few things to make the vaSpace tool fancier:

  1. Rotateable tags! Not having this renders it useless in any view other than ‘world’ cplane.

  2. When created from a curve, it should remember from which curve, so a vaUpdate will… update it to the changed curve.

  3. Even better: why not add edit points to the space, like e.g. a slab has? Including height!
    If the space would update immediately when it’s perimeter is edited, it would make it perfect tool for quick area / volume studies.

Sidenote: I’m looking for the best way to display text showing a closed curve’s area next to it, like so:
…which update immediately after the curve/volume is changed!
These areas/volumes should then be listable in a table (Used Revit for the job, but hey).

‘Text fields’ are the only working solution for now, and R7 WIP has also volume now, but it’s a hassle to edit, since curve and volume have to be dragged along together.

vaSpaces would be the ideal candidate!
Even tried vaElements / vaAnnotations with Grasshopper, but they suffer from the fact that the original curve has to be picked again after each change.

  1. Scaling a space created from curves changes it’s size, but the values (area etc.) do not update correctly.

  2. Spaces from curves have 2.7m default height. It’s unclear to me where this comes from, or how it can be changed.

Best regards

Hi Eugen,
There are already some of your requests in our wishlist. I know, you made some of them already long time ago: Space/Room tag rotateable? so hopefully we can work on them for version 3.
You can already show the volume of spaces, which update if the space perimeter (not when they are created from curves yet, I know), or the space height change. You need to edit the space style:

And you can already display the spaces information in VisualARQ tables, no need to go to Revit for that.

  1. That’s a bug. We will fix it as soon as possible.
  2. By default, the spaces take their height by the level heigh where they are inserted. But this does not work on spaces created from curves. We will fix this. And we will change the text displayed in their properties panel, where it says “By style” to “By Level”. Right now it’s a bit confusing, I know.


Hello there,
I would add two wishes. Calculating a volume according to boundary elements (also slabs or roofs) would be a great feature. And another behaviour of space tag - when moved outside of a room it slightly disappears, the more it is out of its boundaries.
And zoning, of course, but it is a third one :wink:
Cheers, Jaro

Thanks for the reply, Francesc!
I’m aware that spaces can display volumes. Also that spaces can be listed in vaTable, which is great.That’s why they would be so useful for mass studies! I really like to avoid Revit for something as seemingly trivial.
However, it’s not that trivial after all in Rhino when you want these masses update their area/volume immediately after editing.

Ad 3) Do you know what I mean? Imagine spaces had control points, and could be edited like geometry.
That of course would contradict the idea to update when their surrounding VA parts change.
How could this be solved?

  • Maybe they have a switch to work in ‘automatic’ mode or by perimeter/height
  • Or, there are special VA lines/borders that are recognized by spaces, which can be easily edited.
    I’d prefer the first.

If anybody has a good idea how to get these ‘masses’ with automatic area/volume, please share.
As mentioned, text fields would work, but are otherwise cumbersome.

Yes. This feature is in our wishlist already. We can add control points to spaces created from curves or even to spaces created from insert points. However, we need to study if after editing its control points, the space objet is detached from the position or the input geometry.

Got it, thanks!

Btw. my solution last week was a simple GH script that loads some perimeter curves, extrudes them by height and level number and putputs the area and volume to some text floating around in the scene. Works, but is not elegant, because if new curves have to be added, one has to open GH and fumble in those crv components. That’s why vaElements are so cool!

Before that, I tried to use a vaElement with curve input and height/levels as parameters, that outputs spaces. However, I could not figure how those spaces translate to vaTables. Tried everything I could think of.

Best regards

So are you using VA Elements created from GH definitios for spaces?
In that case, the resulting area is a property that cannot be displayed directly on a table. You need to create a custom parameter called, i.e “SpaceElementArea”, and assign values of the corresponding area to each Element.
Then you can create a new table style for Elements, which displays that parameter “SpaceElementArea”. From Grasshopper, you can calculate the areas of the elements easily and assign the values to that “SpaceElementArea” using the “Update Property” component.
Let me know if you have any questions about this workflow.
Kind regards,

Thanks a lot!

I don’t know how to do that…

Maybe post a demoscene, with Grasshopper and all?

Hi Eugen,
Actually, using an Element as a Space object is not a good solution, since it requires an insert point, and it can’t be created from a boundary curve. (You could, but the curve would be a parameter, and you would need to insert first the Element and then change the curve parameter, so it wouldn’t be very practical).

If you have already used a GH def that generates polysurfaces, you can use GH to calculate the bottom areas of them and add these areas as values for a custom parameter with the Set Property component. (The Update Property component would be more convinient to avoid baking the geometry and having duplicated objects, but we are fixing an issue related to it).
See gif below.

Later on you can prepare a new table style that lists this information:

Find attached the GH file in the (13.8 KB)

Thank you, Francesc!
Got it to work, but not in a manner that is practical enough.

  • The whole idea is to get immediate feedback on changes to the mass geometry. Baking renders the whole thing close to pointless, as would having to press the VA ‘UpdateProperty’ button.

  • Why are closed polysurfaces not displayed in that list?
    With extrusions, it works.

  • How can a sum be displayed in a VATable?

  • How can the numbers in the table be rounded? Is that what the ‘Style’ column is for? How to create one? Seems not to be documented.

For now I threw together a GH script that displays area and volume of the loaded breps, as well as the totals. Just text objects in the scene. Not beautifuly, but works and updates live.
However, a VisualArq version would be desirable.

Thanks a lot!
Best regards

This is a bug, even it says “Open polysurface”, it refers to closed polysurfaces too. We will fix it in the next release.

There is an option to see the sum of the properties of elements in the table. You need to group the elements by a specific property, whose value is common to all of them. In your example, if you group the properties of your table style by the parameter “name”, you will see the total sum of Area and Volume. You can do that from the “Quantity” field.

To make this “Quantity” field appear, (if it doesn’t exist), do right-click on an existing table style, so the style wizard opens, and go to the step where you can group table elements by a specific field.

The option to display the total sum of values as in your screenshot is expected in VisualARQ 3.

The number of decimals in tables is taken from the Document Properties > Units > Display precision.
We also have plans to decide in which units are dispayed the values in tables, regardless of the Document units. I’ll keep you posted.

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@eugen, bug fixed in VisualARQ 2.9!


Dear VisualArqers!
Would it be possible to add a toggle to auto-updating vaSpaces, and maybe also vaTables at the same time (Revit style)? Using vaUpdate becomes a bit boring after the 50th time.
That spaces/tables don’t auto-update yet is for performance reasons, I assume. However, if there are not too many of them, such an auto-update might be quite fast enough. What’s fast enough should be the user’s decision.
Thank you!

Hi @eugen,

You are right, actually those two features are already in our list. We will let you know when are available.

Kind regards

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Do you see any chance to get rid of the z-fighting of a vaSpace and a vaSlab in a shaded view?


BringToFront etc. is no good, since then all the parts would have to be sorted.
How about some automatic tiny offset of the space’s hatch?

Hi Eugen,
We will see if we can avoid this z-fighting. This only happens in 3D views though. From the Top viewport you should not have this issue.

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Thanks, Francesc!
This is a general problem with hatches, of course. Maybe McNeel itself chould look into this.
However, if you find a straightforward fix…

Hello! A wish regarding vaTables:
In the RMB context menu, there’s the option to set the spaces which the table will list.
How about adding options to add / remove spaces? Would be more handy than always having to select all relevant spaces.


Thank you!
Best regards

It would be a great option to have a possibility to add/remove objects from all kinds of tables.
Cheers, Jaro

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@jerry.bakowski, @Eugen I agree it would be helpful to add objects to tables, and not forcing you to select them all every time you want to list them. I add your votes for this feature.