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As a design progresses you will get feedback from various sources. Your client may have requests. You may have to react to site conditions, or your energy analysis, or other code requirements might indicate changes that need to be made. The Conceptual Massing Environment allows you to make many edits and receive immediate and fluid feedback as you work. In this movie we will take our conceptual building form that we have been working in the last several movies, and we will make some modifications. Now here I have a version of the file that we have been working on in last few movies. This is the Massing file, again we are back in the Massing Family Editor, and it's called Modified Building forms.
It's the same basic model that we started with, with the simple addition of a Void Form right in this general area, right there. So I've got a couple Void Forms just in this area, because one of the changes that we want to consider is creating an outdoor sculpture garden. Another change that we want to consider is a different form for the tower and finally this block that we had over here is really more of a stand-in for a future development of townhouse facades that are going to come later. So we are going to look at those three areas of the design here, right now and we'll start with the building Tower.
So I am going to go up to the Roof Level and I am going to zoom in on the Tower element. I am going to select it; I am going to delete that Tower element. Now we have decided that instead of a round tower we want to do something a little more square in form, and we want to pick up some of the lines of the existing triangular forms that we already have here. So I want to start by choosing a Reference Line and I want to place that Reference Line here in the Roof Level and I will just a simple line. And I'll pick the midpoint there and run it across to the midpoint here.
Now you can see that I am having a little difficulty. If you have a hard time getting the midpoint you can use your keyboard shortcut for midpoint which is S+M, and then that will make it a little easier to force it to snap to the midpoint. I am going to click to Modify, I am going to select this line and I want to verify that the host is in fact the Roof Level. Because you saw that it was highlighting the top of the form element. So sometimes it tries to host itself to the form instead. Now, you may recall in the previous chapter that we actually said that Reference Lines could become hosts for other elements.
So what we want to do next is, I want to use the Set Work Plane option, pick a Plane, click OK and I want to highlight this Reference Line and make it the host for the next set of geometry. And that next of geometry is going to be Reference Lines again. And I will draw some lines here running perpendicular and parallel to the existing line. Now I am going to select this one and stretch it out a little bit and like so.
Now, I want to control all this in a more parametric kind of way. Remember, this is the Family Editor, so we can add constraints, we can add parameters and so on. I want to make sure that this Reference Line stays in the center of the top Work Plane here. So I am going to choose an Aligned Dimension, and I don't want the Form Element, so I am going to press Tab until I get the Reference Line underneath, and then go to this Reference Line and then again press Tab over here, you see it says Form Element.
Now I want it to say Reference Line, to get that Reference Line underneath. And even though we snap to the midpoint I am going to toggle on this equal to make sure that that stays equal. The next thing I want to do is take this line right here using my Tab key, and mirror it to the other side, like so. I use my Trim and Extend to a corner to clean that up. Select this one with the tab; mirror it from the midpoint of that line, like so.
So that I have a nice rectangular form right there, and now I want to set that up parametrically as well. So I want to go from here to here, from here to here, and then finally I want to keep it centered on its Reference Line. So I am going to go from here to here, to here. Now, that one needs to be equal/equal. You may be wondering why we need both an equal/equal here and here. Well this one keeps the host line right down the center, but this second one keeps all of this centered.
Now at this point, if I were to do this you see what happens to my rectangle. Now of course the dimensions are doing some really wonky things, but notice that the angle of that rectangle is staying all centered and so forth. Now this dimension became invalid when I did that, so I am going to cancel this because I just wanted you to see that this was actually hosted on this. But what that allows us to do is if this overall form out here changes shape, the tower will always stay in the center, that's what I am looking for there.
Now here, I want to take this dimension and label it with a parameter, and I am going to call this Tower W for width. I want to make that a Type parameter and click OK. And then this one, add a parameter, Tower Length, make that a Type parameter. Now I can go to Family Types and I can flex these to anything I want. So maybe I want the width to be, let's do about 58 feet, and the length there to be may be about 40 feet, and let's click Apply and you can see that those changes are taking place there.
So now what happens is if I select this and Create Form and I'll choose the one on the left which I know is the 3D form, let's go look at it in 3D. Okay, you see I have a nice square tower there, but because all these parameters are established on there I can go in and change those numbers, let's try 40 and 50, and click Apply and the size of my tower will change to react to that. I am going to go back to 58x44.
And then one more thing I am going to select this and toggle this on right here and deselect it. And I am going to make that a parameter as well, and call that Tower H for the height. And so now I can flex that one as well and let's make a tower a little bit taller there. So I now have a fully parametric tower and we've also changed the shape of it. So instead of it being round it's more rectangular.
Over here, I provided the voids already ready as I noted at the start of the movie. So we have a Void Form right here and we want to actually start carving away from this annex over here and turning it into more of an outdoor sculpture garden in that area. So there are actually two voids in this area, so we can't see the second one because it's buried inside. So I am going to take this first one here and I am going to use the Cut Geometry tool. So when I click on that, it asks me to select the solid geometry to be cut that's going to be this guy.
And then to select the object that's going to do the cutting and that's going to this guy. And you can see that that sort of carves away. Now you get this other effect over here because that's actually the hexagon form that's now been revealed when we carved away from this form. But if you notice if I highlight this form the void did cut away the part that overlaps the hexagon. But we get this sort of interesting form that happens in there. But now we have a roof down here, well I actually want to cut it again and you can kind of see this second form here. So I am going to pick it a second time, the Cut Geometry tool remained active.
And then pick the second void object and now you can see that I sort of have this double tiered void carving away and leaving behind this little like wall right here. If I go to the Main Level, that wall area right there kind of tapers, it's got this width to it, because right now the shape is following exactly along this straight line right here. So I am going to go to my Split tool, right here, and I am going to find that Vertical Reference Line and split it right at this point.
And when I do that, that'll give me these as two separate Reference Lines now, which is good because I can change the shape of this. But you'll notice that something has happened over here. What actually happened is as soon as I split that Reference Line these are reference-based forms, which means that the overall form has actually just changed and it's affected the way that the void was being applied to it. So we'll have to fix that after we are done here. So I am going to click my Modify tool to get out of the Split tool and I'm going to select this Reference Line right here, that gives me this little grip, and I am just going to drag it back along this line right here until it intersects with the point right there.
And you can kind of see that it's now parallel to there, it stays lined up with this Reference plane and it more closely matches that angle. Now let's go back to 3D to see what happened. Notice that if I deselect everything here that this form element actually went a little haywire. Let me select something here. It kind of turned itself into just planes instead of an actual form and that's just simply because this Reference Line changed. So what I am going to do is delete this that I have selected, when I orbit around you can kind of see.
I can reselect this--make sure you are getting right one. If I move my mouse it changes which chain is being selected. So I want that inner chain of lines that goes all the way around the form. Let me orbit around to show you. All right, so it goes all the way around in the inside of this form here. I am going to re-create that form, do the 3D, change the height back to 50 feet, and then this just gives us a little bit of extra practice here with applying the Void Forms.
We will do Cut Geometry, select this, pick the void, Cut Geometry again, pick this and select the void and then we are back to where we started from. So now we have our little sculpture garden carved away. And the last thing that we want to do here is we are actually going to select this form and delete it. Because in the next movie we're going to talk about how we are going to create the townhouse facades there in a little bit more of a sculptural kind of way.
So rather than being one big old block of material, they're actually going to look like several small town houses that are all kind of attached to one another along the street front there. So for now we'll just delete that from our form, we will save what we have here. And in the next movie we will look at the townhouse facades.
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