Adding a Deck
A large variety of deck styles can be created in Realtime
Landscaping Architect, including straight, multilevel, curved, and even decks
Realtime Landscaping Architect makes it easy to create
intricate deck designs; simply draw an outline for the deck and all the work of
adding support posts, framing, railing, balusters, and more, is done
automatically. Decks can be designed from scratch, or the Deck Wizard can be used to add a pre-built deck.
To add a deck:
Click the Add Deck button, which is found near the top of the screen
under the Building tab.
Draw the outline of the deck by clicking the left mouse button to add points.
Press the Backspace key to remove the last point added, and press the
Esc key to cancel. If you would like to input the distance and angle
manually, place at least one point and then press the Enter key.
To finish drawing the deck, place the last point on top of the first point.
Alternately, right-click to place the last point; it will automatically connect
to the first point.
The landscape in the following design features a deck with
Creating Curved Decking
The curvature of a deck can be edited at any point,
allowing you to create accurate bends and rounded corners. For details on how to
manipulate the points of a shape, see Editing
If multiple sharp corners need to be rounded, see below for
an easy way to round each corner at the same time.
To round one or more corners:
Click the deck you wish to modify to select it. If more than one deck needs to
be edited, hold the Shift key while clicking on additional decks.
Click the Edit points button found in the properties.
Click the corner point(s) that need to be rounded. If more than one point must
be rounded, hold the Shift key on your keyboard while clicking on
Click the Round corners button that is found underneath the Edit points
button, or press the O key on your keyboard.
Move your mouse over one of the selected points, click and hold the left mouse
button, and move the mouse to round the corners. While the corners are being
rounded, you will see the radius displayed at the bottom of the screen. When the
desired radius is reached, release the left mouse button.
Click the Edit points button again to disable point editing mode.
The following picture displays the same deck before and
after two of its corners have been rounded using the steps above:
Holes of any shape and size can be cut into decks to make
room for hot tubs, gardens, or other features.
To cut a hole in the deck:
Select the Plan view.
Click the Ellipse button that is found near the top of the screen under
the Plan Detail tab, and draw a circle by holding the Shift
key, clicking once on your design where the center of the circle should be, and
again where the edge of the circle should be.
Select the new circle by clicking on it, and then click it again, but this time
hold down the left mouse button while moving the mouse to relocate the circle
over the deck.
Click your deck to select it.
Hold the Shift key and click the circle to select it as well. Note that
the selection order is important for creating holes; the deck must be selected
first in this case.
Click Edit, Shape, and Boolean Subtract. Alternately, just click
the Subtract shapes button that is found near the top of the
screen, under the Main tab.
The picture below shows a deck after a hole has been
subtracted. The Hide deck boards option was used to expose
the deck framing.
For more information on cutting shapes from one another,
see Using Booleans to Create
The entire deck receives railing by default, but railing
can be toggled on and off per edge using the Toggle Railing button. Note
that you do not need to turn off the railing where you plan to add deck stairs;
the deck stairs will automatically remove the railing for you.
You can also add standalone railing which can be placed
anywhere on the deck. See Adding Railing for
To turn railing on or off:
Select the deck in your design, and click the Toggle Railing
button that is found in the properties
to enable railing editing mode.
Click each of the deck edges that need railing removed.
When you are finished, click the Toggle Railing button to disable
railing editing mode.
Customizing the Plan View
Within the Plan view, decks can have a customized
appearance. For example, a deck could look realistic in the Perspective view,
but have a dark outline with a gradient fill interior when viewed in the Plan
view. To customize the way the deck looks in the Plan view, click on the deck to
select it, click the Material bar that appears to the right of the
screen, and then check the Custom appearance in each
view option. Two tabs will appear: Plan and Perspective. These two tabs
allow you to customize how the deck appears in each view. If the Custom
appearance in each view option is unchecked, then the deck will simply look like
a realistic deck in both views.
are usually easiest to add while in the Plan view.
can also add standalone railing which can be placed anywhere on the deck. See Adding Railing for details.
the grid snap feature can make adding an accurate deck very easy. See Snap Settings for more details.
Multistory decks can be built by adding each of the deck stories as
individual decks using the steps above. For the upper level deck stories, set
the Elevation slider (found to the right of the screen, under the
Options bar, when a deck is selected) to the desired height.
Stairs can be easily added to any deck in your landscape design. For
details, see Adding Deck Stairs.
Setting Object Properties
Adding Deck Stairs