OpenSite Designer CONNECT Edition

What's New?

What is New Bentley OpenSite Designer CONNECT Edition

This section provides a list of new features in Bentley OpenSite, OpenRoads, and OpenRail Designer CONNECT Edition products, also referred to as OpenX Designer products. Features that are only available in specific products are appropriately noted as such.

The following summarizes the new features and enhancements in 2021 Release 1.

General Enhancements

  • Update of Power Platform to Edition (V10.16.00.80).
  • Subscription Entitlement Service (formerly CONNECT Licensing) is utilized. For more information: Subscription Entitlement Service.
  • This version uses OpenFlows SewerGEMS version More information here: What's New in SewerGEMS, CivilStorm, StormCAD, SewerCAD, and SewerOPS CONNECT Edition Update 3 (version - OpenFlows | Hydraulics and Hydrology Wiki - OpenFlows | Hydraulics and Hydrology - Bentley Communities.
  • Includes Bentley LumenRT Designer CONNECT Edition Update 14.
  • Includes Bentley Descartes CONNECT Edition (V10.16.00.80).
  • Update of gINT Civil Tools CONNECT Edition (V10.07.01.83).
  • Support for following ProjectWise Connect Edition (V10.00.03.434).
  • Includes Bentley GenerativeComponents CONNECT Edition (V10.16.00.80).
  • Added support for side-by-side installations. Side-by-side installations of 2021 Release 1 and any previous version is supported.
  • Changed product branding to reflect release name (Example, 2021 Release 1).
  • Optimized printing/plotting to increase performance by 5x.
  • Improved Export to DWG to eliminate data loss.
  • Removed Connect Advisor from the Help menu. Connect Advisor is now part of the Connection Client.
  • Renamed the "iTwin" tab to "Collaborate".
  • Updated right-click options in Sheet Index and Project Explorer to include all available options.
  • Removed the Downgrade Civil Model tool from Technical Preview.
  • Integrated the Downgrade Civil Model tool with ProjectWise.
  • For workspace changes please see \Configuration\Organization-Civil\Workspace Updates - 2021 Release 1.pdf included with the delivered workspace.

Survey Enhancements

  • N/A

Geometry Enhancements

  • Enhanced the Geometry Builder, Table Editor and Geometry Connector to honor the A Transition Parameter.
  • Geometry Connector now supports editing only part of an alignment.
  • Enhanced start stations and equations to hold their physical XY position when the beginning of a geometry changes.
  • Added the configuration variable CIVIL_GEOMETRY_IMPORT_FD_TABLE that defines the default mapping file for import geometry.
  • Added Equivalent Radius (100 * K value) as a vertical curve parameter option.
  • Added a new "Refresh 3D with Levels" option to the Profile 3d Slice tool that allows the profile slice to account for level modifications in the 3d model.
  • Added option to display horizontal geometry information in the profile view.
  • Added the ability to display vertical geometry annotation in the profile view.
  • Improved several calculations in the Italian Check Rules.
  • Geometry Connector improvements; Multi Element Regression support.
  • Geometry Connector improvements; edit part of complex geometry.
  • Vertical Design; Horizontal geometry information in profile view.
  • Vertical Design; Vertical element annotation in profile view.
  • Vertical Design; Display turnouts on profile view.
  • Analyse Point to include active Cant, Speed and Radius.
  • Updated geometry transition definitions; Czech and Half Cosine (Japanese).
  • Crossover tool is removed, geometry connector provides improved functionality.

Terrain Enhancements

  • Updated the icon layout on the Terrain tab to improve usability.
  • Addressed an issue with terrain imported from ESRI being at an incorrect elevation.

Modeling Enhancements

  • Enhanced Quantity Reports by Named Boundary to support non-Civil named boundaries.
  • Added mirror/reflection buttons to the Template Editor.

Drawing Production and Annotation Enhancements

  • Enhanced the Text Favorite Manager to be the single source for the creating, editing and managing text favorites, including Survey, Drainage & Utilities.
  • Enhanced Text Favorite Manager with a "Select Element" tool to make it easy to define text fields.
  • Improved the performance of Side Slope Annotation and the functionality to work on linear templates and clipped corridors.
  • Improved annotation performance by stopping annotation from updating when the underlying geometry had not changed.
  • Enabled the annotation of Survey crossing features in cross sections.
  • Enabled the annotation of D&U crossing features in cross sections.
  • Enhanced the Element Annotation tool with option to annotate "All Elements in Model" or only the selected elements.
  • Enhanced both the Element Annotation and Drawing Model Annotation tools with an option to use "Override Annotation Group" which allows a different Annotation Group to be used than the one associated with the Feature Definition. The Override Annotation Group option is also used to annotate a single geometry feature with multiple annotations.
  • Added a new Civil Labeler tool that supports complex labels computed from one or multiple targets. For example, crossing alignments or elevation/offset along plan element with stationing relative to the centerline. Labels include many types of leaders and frames around the text. (Tech Preview).
  • Added the ability to use level overrides for cross section drawing models.
  • Added the ability to create cross section sheets from existing cross section drawing models. This allows new cross sections to be added to a set and new sheets generated without having to re-create the existing cross section drawings.
  • Added a new Cross Section Navigator tool to allow easier navigation of the cross section drawing models in the active file.
  • Enhanced drawing production options to allow for the separate naming of Views, Drawing Models and Sheet Models. This supports many workflows including sequential sheet numbering.
  • Setting the variable _USTN_MERGE_INTERNALREFERENCES_SAVEASV8 = 1 in conjunction with "Export to V8 DGN" will now flatten files (merge references) for drawing production.
  • Added a new reference option (Synchronize View > Settings from Design Model) allowing the levels and view options displayed in sheet models to be controlled from a container file.
  • Updated Arema Turnout Definitions (v2018) .
  • Display curvature symbols on plan view .

Drainage and Utilities Enhancements

  • The Place Node command now lets you select a baseline reference as part of the prompt sequence.
  • Nodes now include relevant properties for connected conduits, such as their shape, size, invert elevation, and material.
  • Profile runs can now show the conduits that connect to a node, that are not part of the profile run.
  • Annotation of multiple conduits in cross section drawings can be automated using an Annotation Filter, which now lets you select conduit feature definitions.
  • The MicroStation 2D Element ID has been added as a Utility property, which means that it can be included in FlexTables, and exported to external formats such as Shapefiles.
  • A Slope (Construction) property has been added, for annotation and reporting.
  • The Extract Utilities from Graphics command now lets you select a feature definition for nodes, as well as conduits.
  • The Extract Utilities from Graphics command now lets you specify a search radius for nodes, to account for the situation where the ends of the graphics for the conduits are close, but not coincident.
  • You can now import and export a Utilities submodel, as well as a Drainage submodel using a .sqlite file.
  • Importing InRoads Storm and Sanitary, LandXML, and MicroDrainage data can now be done in an empty design file, as opposed to a new design file.
  • You can now remove the elevation and baseline references if those references are no longer available.
  • A new configuration variable (CIVIL_SUBSURFACE_LOAD_REFERENCES) has been added to prevent the extraction of Drainage and Utilities databases from a referenced design file.

Item Types Enhancements

  • Added the ability to define pick lists in an excel file.
  • Add search capability to Item Types pick list in the Properties dialog.
  • Added the ability to define multiple Item Types per Feature Definition.
  • Added the ability to define default values for each Item Type property per Feature Definition.
  • Added synchronization of Item Types between 2D, 3D, and profile models. The synchronized Item Type can be viewed and modified from any of the three views/models.
  • Removed Asset Manager icon from the Home tab. The Asset Manager icon can be found on the Utilities tab.
  • Added a new "Update Sta/Off Values" mode to Asset Manager to calculate Station and Offset values and update existing Item Type definitions.
  • Improved Asset Managers ability to use Linear References in 3d models.
  • Enhanced Reports to Group and Aggregate data.
  • Enhanced Reports to include Summary rows.
  • Added new configuration MS_DGNLIBLIST_ITEMTYPES variable to define Item Types dgn library files.
  • Renamed PICKLIST_EXCELPATH configuration variable to ITEMTYPE_PICKLIST_EXCELPATH. The old configuration variable remains active at this time but will be retired in the future.
  • Added the key-in "PICKLISTS UPDATEEXCELSETTINGS <filename>" which can be used to bulk update existing Pick List definitions on existing Item Types. This can be useful if the file Excel name or tab/sheet name changes.

The following summarizes the new features and enhancements in 2020 Release 3.


  • Update of Power Platform to Edition (V10.14.04.04), Bentley Descartes CONNECT Edition (V10.14.04.04) and Bentley GenerativeComponents CONNECT Edition (V10.14.04.04).
  • Includes OpenFlows SewerGEMS version For additional information refer to: OpenFlows: What's New.
  • Includes Bentley LumenRT Designer CONNECT Edition Update 14.
  • Update of gINT Civil Tools CONNECT Edition (V10.07.01.03).
  • Support for following ProjectWise Connect Edition (V10.00.03.334) and (V10.00.03.4xx).
  • MicroStation task navigation interface capability has been added to UI allowing to switch from Ribbon to task-based navigations. Task navigation is for legacy support of MicroStation tools and does not include support for OpenX Connect Edition tools.
  • iTwin Synchronizer & iTwin Design Review has been added.
  • Visualization Content is included as optional feature in the installer.
  • MicroStation based clash detection tool is included under Drawing>Analyze, note this is only available when in a 3D model.
  • Siteops Desktop application is included with the OpenSite Designer installer.
  • Downgrade Civil Model tool on the backstage allows the ability downgrade OpenX DGN files to a previous version or as a plain MicroStation DGN. (OpenX-Technology Preview)
  • Civil File Manager has replaced Version Checker. Civil File Manager allows for variety of file management of OpenX Designer DGN files. This application is located at: C:\Program Files\Bentley\OpenX Designer CONNECT Edition\OpenRoadsDesigner\CivilFileManager.exe.
  • Added the ability to report station and offset of Item Types on 3D elements such as meshes.
  • Update standards tool supports updates from the item type library.
  • Dynamic Plan view allows to navigate along an alignment and automatically rotate view normal to current station and exaggerate in X and Y axis.
  • Icons have been updated for the Activate and Deactivate rules.
  • All rail spiral types are supported when exporting to DWG format.


  • A configuration variable has been added that defines the path where images files are located for survey data processing, CIVIL_SURVEY_PHOTOS_FOLDER.


  • Added the capability to define feature definition(s) to geometry during import.
  • Reporting for tangent direction now indicates if it is the Forward (Ahead) or Backwards (Back) tangent.
  • Rail Parameters have been added to Design File Settings.
  • Regression line is now also used as slew line, reducing the clutter in the plan view.
  • Fixed and information regression point types are added.


  • Import Topo tool allows the creation of terrain model from ESRI, USGS, and SRTM. Importing from ESRI service requires an ESRI account. (OpenX-Technology Preview)


  • Copy Template tool has been enhanced to allow copying Corridor templates from one corridor to another.
  • Added ability to calculate multiple substratum layers with earthwork quantification with the Create Cut Fill Tool.
  • Template Library file (*.itl) now prompts user for checkout from ProjectWise if available. If the file is already checked out, one can enter the template library and perform a Save As.
  • Properties and quick properties display the Volume Option of a mesh for quick identification.
  • Corridor Modeling tools that require a corridor to be selected now allows the picking of the corridor in the 3D model by selecting a corridors mesh or 3d linear geometry.
  • The corridor Clipping Reference object now identifies if the clip is 2D or 3D clip.
  • Create Closed Mesh tool allows the creation of a mesh from corridors, linear templates, terrain models, and meshes.
  • Feature Definitions with a Custom Volume option can specify if Fill is or is not included in the Mass Ordinate.
  • Corridors processed in 2020 Release 3 include metadata on mesh and 3D linear graphics. This metadata is used for increase performance for a variety of tools including the Cross Section Grade Report and Cross Section annotations.
  • A key-in for Process All has been added, GEOMETRY PROCESSALLOBJECTS.
  • Cant dialog is simplified, additional parameters are added to Design File Settings. (OpenRail)

Drawing Production and Annotation

  • Named boundary and sheet creation tools support selection sets for bulk creation of plans, profiles and cross sections on multiple geometries.
  • Ability to name Saved Views, Named Boundaries, and Sheet Models has been added.
  • Vertical change in Plan annotations are now supported.
  • Cross Section Grade Report has enhanced filtering abilities and optimized performance.
  • Ability to automatically trim profile vertical grid lines by the existing ground line has been added.
  • Survey chains can be annotated on cross section sheets.
  • Ability to label elevation along a plan view element with a profile at an even interval.
  • Cross Section sheets can be cut looking down station, "backwards facing".
  • The key-in PLACELABEL TOOL OPEN has been added for Place Label tool.
  • Added the ability to annotate Rail cant in plan. (OpenRail)
  • Additional rotation options are added to turnout annotation, for cell-based representation of turnouts. (OpenRail)
  • New plan cant annotation definitions are added. (OpenRail) New vertical change in plan annotation definitions are added.
  • New cab definitions are added to 3D Drive Through tool

Drainage and Utilities

  • A new Critical Storm Analysis Wizard gives the ability to easily run a number of storm events on a system, and identifies the worst-case storm for every conduit or node - without having to create the scenarios first. This makes it much easier to test a system that has been designed using the Rational method.
  • A series of nodes can now be placed at an interval along a linear element.
  • Place Node now lets you state that the elevation reference is for the node invert, instead of the cover or ground. This is useful when placing endwalls in a ditch.
  • Place Node now lets you extract an irregular cross section from the elevation reference.
  • Place Node now lets you place a tap node in a conduit.
  • Added the OpenFlows batch pipe split functionality, that automatically inserts nodes in conduits if they are within an offset tolerance.
  • An option has been added to list all conduits that are missing a start or stop node.
  • Properties that have civil rules are now displayed in Utility Properties as read only.
  • Properties for the largest and smallest conduits connected to a drainage node have been added.
  • The ability to only draw "whole" conduits on profile sheet has been added. This will force the subsequent conduit to be placed on the next profile sheet.
  • The profile manipulator for conduit slope can now display the OpenFlows value, if this is selected in Design File Settings.
  • The road cross slope for a catch basin can now be read from a terrain model.
  • Added support for UK Flood Estimation Handbook 2013 Rainfall Data.
  • Loading of reference files containing drainage and utilities database occurs automatically when the active file also contains a database. This will allow the exposure of reference drainage and utilities properties and the ability to annotate them across reference files.
  • ModelBuilder now supports the Node Rotation property when importing and exporting data. This has caused a change to the way that the Node Rotation value is set. If you have existing design files containing nodes that use a relative rotation, the value needs to be reset before you compute the hydraulics and hydrology. To do this, select each node, and use its manipulator to change the value - either very slightly, or change it, then change it back.