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ArchiCAD Tip: Place any new element(s) on one layer


One of the better management features in ArchiCAD is the ability to have an active layer for EACH tool in ArchiCAD.
As you switch from tool-to-tool, elements are place on that tool's current layer – Personally I am very happy with this method.

There may be times (for example when annotating) that a user would prefer if all elements were placed onto the same layer as they are created, irrespective of the tool used.
For example, all lines/polylines/circles/fills/text were placed on an "Annotation" layer.
(This goes against the default ArchiCAD method, but may be of interest in some certain instances – I would not recommend widespread use of this feature)

To assign one layer as the overriding layer for all tools:

  1. Click on any (layer-based) tool
  2. Assign the proposed 'global active layer' to that tool (via the Infobar)
  3. Goto the pulldown menu, Document > Layers > Layer Extras > Active Layer
  4. A small palette appears, and you can choose one of two options – the 'One Active Layer for all Element Types' is the one to choose
  5. Place any elements by any tool, and they will all be placed on the layer chosen in step (2)
  6. When finished with that amount of drawing/modeling
    • Switch the option back to 'Individually Set Layers'
    • Close the Active Layer palette

This feature has been available in ArchiCAD for a reasonably long time but has only resurfaced recently!!