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PennFoster-Oleson Village-Finalization questions

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I am currently taking the PennFoster-Drafting with AutoCAD course and a few questions on the AutoCAD Commands:Blocks and Layers Project Booklet (aka-Oleson Village). I have reviewed previous posts, but could not find a final answer. I have the drawing complete, but wanted to confirm the following questions before submitting for grading. I have emailed and called PennFoster and did not recieve a response. Anyway, If anyone has completed this and had their drawing graded, could you please help me out with the below 4 questions? Thanks in advance for help.


1). Tree S44 Location? The location has to be a typo, as it is way out of the drawing area and I confirmed my drawing and coordinates were correct. Did anyone recieve instruction on what to do here?


2). ROW, Sidewalk, and Curb location. The instructions here are very vague and confusing. I have mine on the outside of the ROW lines. 1ft from ROW then 6ft sidewalk, then 3ft parking strip, then curb. Does not seem correct to have the curb and parking strip on the other side or the side walk.


3). Plat Map for plotting- It says to activate the layer called "Trim" and draw the trim lines for plotting on it. There is no Trim layer specified in the layers they give us to add to the drawing. Is this just to go on the Yellow Border layer?


4). Does the title block and border stay in model space for plotting? It doesnt specify to do this in paper space, with a proper viewport or anything.

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You are correct, the Penn-Foster instructions are, at times, either misleading, incorrect or vague. They have been that way for some time. One would think that they would be corrected.


4. The title block and border remains stuck in model space because P-F has failed to instruct their students about the usage of paper space layouts.


3. No response at this time. I'd have to check but I'm not on my CAD computer.


2. The sidewalk, curb and parking strip should fall within the ROW lines. Having worked in the civil field for a municipal engineering department doing road layout this is the way we always did it. A 50 foot ROW typically will have 30 feet of actual roadway for parking/travel lanes.


1. See answer to #3.

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3) The Olsen Village drawing I have access to has a TRIM layer, red in color, dashed linetype but after making it the current layer and freezing all other layers nothing appears onscreen. I think they may have goofed on that one which comes as no surprise. I hope you did not pay full cost for the program.


1) The P-F instructions list the coordinates of tree S44 as follows: 1420986.34, 786332.48. After looking at the "Y" coordinate for all the other "S" trees I think I found the problem. The coordinate should be 783332.48.


OK then, I think we're done here then right?

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Sorry for the late reply. I was traveling back to the US from India. I am an engineer for a telecommunications company that requires international travel 50% to 60% of the year. My company paid for the course. I chose it because it was online and at your own pace. Ive been working with AutoCAD for the last 5 years. We basically draw 2D floor plans, elevation drawings, and electrical schematics (kind of basic). This course started off okay with a decent structure and order of lessons. But now it seems to jump around a bit. For example, I started the next module (after Oleson Village) and it explains tasks we had to do in the Oleson Village. Also, the books are dated and have errors (typos) in each one. They send a list of corrections that you have to go through the text books and correct yourself. Obviously they miss some. Probably wouldnt recommend it to anyone, but at least its something to slap on the resume. Apologies for running on. Just wanted to give you a back ground on me and share my thoughts of the course for anyone who reads this. At this point I just want to finish and be done with it.


PF actually got back to me (2 weeks later). Below were there responses.


1) Tree S44 location was yet another typo. You were correct on your reply. Coordinates were supposed to be 1420986.34,783332.48


2) ROW, Sidewalk, and Curb location- Outside the ROW goes ROW- 1ft buffer- then 6ft sidewalk. Inside the ROW goes ROW- 3ft Parking strip to curb.


3) Trim Layer- There is no instrcution for this, but they said to just create a layer called "Trim" and chose the color and line type of your liking.


4) Layout tab/Paper space- You were also correct. It just stays in Model space.


Thanks so much for your help, not just on this thread, but previous threads as well, which Im sure many people read through for help on this. Take care.

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Sidewalks, grassy strips and curbs usually are shown INSIDE street ROW lines. P-F has two of the three on the outside and only one (parking strip) on the inside. Which means if you deduct 3 feet on both sides of the road for a parking strip the pavement is 46 feet wide. For a subdivision that just doesn't seem right. Now maybe if you were drawing a main commercial boulevard I could see it but not in this case.

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I've found something online that should not only help you but also the good folks over at Penn-Foster.


It is a street ROW section that explains what entities fall within ROW lines. This should clear up any confusion. As far as I know, this is pretty much standard across the U.S. The only thing that might vary would be the actual widths (boulevards are typically wider than side streets) and whether or not curbs and sidewalks are required. I live in a city where 95% of the roads have sidewalks and curbs on both sides but a handful of streets have them only on one side, and a very few (maybe two?) don't have walks or curbs at all.






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Sidewalk Sketch.jpg


Here is what they sent me. Thanks for the link, it has some good info. I have submitted my drawing to PF. Will let you know how I made out. The next module is on Structural and Civil drafting. I am looking forward to the Civil drafting project, as thats what I plan to try and get into.

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Well despite what the instructor has given you I must politely disagree. Do it the way the instructor wants it shown and if you get any grief about it you have the evidence to back it up. Personally I think the "instructor" who answered your question does not have any civil background and is giving you his interpretation of the instructions. Remember P-F is grading you and not me.

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Curiosity got the best of me so I went to the Penn-Foster website. You probably know they are located in Scranton, Pennsylvania.


I visited the website for the city of Scranton and went to their Planning and Zoning department to check the ordinances specifically in regards to streets. This is what I found.


The city lists three different types of streets defined by their ROW width shown in parenthesis. They are Local (50 ft.), Collector (50-60 ft.) and Arterial (60-80 ft.). Sidewalks are to be built within the ROW. The width of a sidewalk on a local street is not given; the width of a sidewalk on a collector street is 4 ft. and for an arterial street is 5 ft. I can only assume that sidewalks are either not required for local streets or that they should be no more than the width of a local street.


The roadway width (i.e. - paved portion) for each type of street is as follows: Local (26-32 ft.), Collector (30-36 ft.) and Arterial (per PENNDOT specs).


With regards to the Olsen Village project I would assume the subdivision roads would be considered "local". Therefore the ROW width should be 50 ft. (as called for in the project PDF), the sidewalk should be 4 ft. (not 6 ft.) and the roadway 26-32 feet. By the way, the grassy strip called for in the project is referred to in the local ordinances as the "planting strip" and not the parking strip. This strip is supposed to be 3 ft. wide and fall within the ROW.


Penn-Foster's Olsen Village project does not even conform to the requirements as set forth by the city in which it is located. The person who developed the project should have, in my opinion, paid closer attention to the details.


The city of Scranton, oddly enough, encourages narrow streets. It says narrow streets help reduce traffic speeds thus leading to less noise. It means that on streets with two-way traffic and parking allowed on both sides cars must weave their way through, occasionally pulling over behind a parked car to allow a vehicle coming in the opposite direction to get by. I understand the need to slow vehicular traffic speeds down but this approach seems beset with its own set of problems.

Edited by ReMark
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Thanks Dadgad. I would have preferred a street ROW cross-section drawing if I could have found one. It's amazing what some cities and towns will NOT put on their websites.

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ReMark - Thanks for your help. I got 100% on the drawing.

Damn! You rock!! When and where do we celebrate?


That is very good news. Thanks for updating us.


You're entirely welcomed. :)

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