Engineering blog
10 Nov 2021

What is a Site Plan Drawing?

When it comes to building design, knowing what’s on the development site is absolutely crucial. You need a detailed site plan drawing that gives you important information.

Many building permits need a complete and accurate site plan drawn to scale. Hence, you must know what a site plan drawing consists of. Let’s get started.

Introduction: What is a Site Plan Drawing?

A site plan, or plot plan, is part of architectural documentation. It functions as a map of your building site and provides details about how the structure will be oriented.

In short, site plans are large-scale drawings that display the total extent of a site for a proposed or existing development. Along with location plans, they might be required for planning applications. Furthermore, they may be accompanied by site sections, which display the site’s topography.

Usually, site plan drawings are created after a series of site investigations and desk studies. Depending on the project size, they may be at a scale of 1:200 or 1:500. However, larger scales might be used for very small projects.

A contractor or builder creates a diagram that shows a land’s plot and property lines, as well as:

  • Structural elements

  • On-site structures

  • Utility poles

  • Power lines

  • Landscape features

  • Setbacks

  • Driveways

  • Fencing

With the incorporation of Building Information Modeling (BIM), site plans can form an important part of the project management model. They may also be prepared in 3D.

What is the Purpose of a Plot Plan?

The site plan drawing will show the way your structure will relate to what already exists on the property. Furthermore, it allows building officials to check local zoning and building codes.

Here are some more important purposes:

  • Ensure that what you are planning to add will fall within authoritative codes.

  • Ensure that local services such as roads, water, emergency services, school and sewers are adequate for your plan.

  • Less likely to get tangled in lawsuits from improper land use.

  • Help cover your project for potential future law sets.

When Do You Need a Site Plan?

You might need a site plan drawing if:

  • You are applying for a building or demolition permit.

  • You want to remodel or remove a swimming pool.

  • You want to redo your landscaping.

  • You have encroachment issues with a neighbor.

What is Included in a Site Plan?

The information displayed on a site plan drawing will differ depending on the nature and size of the project. However, certain information appears on most site plans, including but not limited to:

  • Project name, scale, drawing type, revision number, author & status

  • Construction limits – that is, areas of the property where construction will take place and areas near the site where equipment and supplies will be stored

  • Easements (features shared with someone else for specific purposes, like a utility line)

  • Key materials

  • Key dimensions

  • Site boundaries

  • Directional orientation (may include a compass)

  • Highlighted changes from revisions

  • Parking areas with dimensions

  • Roads, footpaths, paved areas & ramps

  • Trees & landscape elements, as well as tree protection orders

Other information may include buildings to be demolished, layout of external services such as drainage and gas, extent of earthworks and so on.

Site Plan Drawing Guidelines

Site plan drawings typically adhere to certain guidelines, depending on the building authorities. Some of these guidelines include:

  • The plot plan must be drawn to scale.

  • Dimensions must be clearly shown and labeled.

  • Dashed and solid lines to indicate proposed and existing structures respectively.

  • Trees that have a diameter of two or more feet, along with their species.

Site Plan vs Floor Plan

One might get confused between site plans and floor plans. However, it is important to know how they are different.

A floor plan is a scaled diagram of the room arrangement in a particular building story.

Conversely, a site plan shows everything within property lines, including the topography.

Usually, floor plans are not included in site plans unless the property is expected to undergo significant changes.

First floor plan First floor plan by BluEntCAD


We hope this article has given you an insight into plot plans. No matter what you plan on building, it is always best to thoroughly research everything involved in the construction documentation.

If you want to get a site plan for your next project, BluEntCAD is just a click away. We serve homebuilders, architects, real estate developers, custom home designers, and engineering companies for large to medium sized commercial, infrastructure, hospitality and residential projects.

Ready to make your project a success with construction documentation services? Contact us now!



Your Citation

CAD Evangelist. "What is a Site Plan Drawing?" CAD Evangelist, Nov. 10, 2021,

CAD Evangelist. (2021, November 10). What is a Site Plan Drawing?. Retrieved from

CAD Evangelist. "What is a Site Plan Drawing?" CAD Evangelist (accessed November 10, 2021 ).

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