Revit 2016: R2 Enhancements

This blog post was originally written for the Managed Design blog. Managed Design is now a U.S. CAD company, so please check back here at for more written articles from Philip Charlson and our new U.S. CAD Minnesota team.

At the end of October, Autodesk came out with their mid-release update of Revit. With the release, comes a number of user-requested enhancements that just can’t wait for the next release. After updating Revit and working in a model with the enhancements, one of the first things I noticed was the addition of the options for Wall Joins. You’ll see it in the Options bar when creating a new wall. In the past, you would have to select the wall to set it to disallow a join. Another addition is the ability to select multiple wall joins and change the selected joins to a butt, miter or squared off condition.

family element visibility review

The next thing I found was the new options for View Range and Underlay. Underlay now has its own area in View Properties where you can set the Base Level, Top Level and set the Underlay Orientation to either Look Up or Look Down. The View Range now gives you a little picture description of how it works. In the classes I have taught this has always been a most confusing topic.

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enhanced revit links

For users who create and develop families, the user interface for the Family Types dialog has changed for the better. It has freed up more room to see the parameters, values and formulas and less dialog. A search parameters area has been added at the top for the more confusing families you might find out there. Another item added is on the View Control bar to see previews of your family instead of going back and forth to a project setting.

view underlay orientation improvments

To help improve productivity, R2 now will only draw elements that are visible. This will allow you to regenerate views more quickly during navigation when orbiting, panning or zooming. With the Draw Visible Elements Only option activated, Revit does not draw elements that are hidden.

A new positioning option, Auto – Project Base Point to Project Base Point, is available when inserting Revit links. This option positions the linked file using the model’s Project Base Point as the insertion point, and aligns it to the Project Base Point in the host model. It is a valuable alternative for projects that do not wish to utilize shared coordinates.

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select wall join type during wall creation

Previously when a Railing Type was created, it required a railing element defined in the project to be able to review its shape and construction. This new feature enables a preview window in the Type Dialog to view new or existing railing type shapes, enabling you to manipulate and iterate rail design in the preview window before placing it.

Below you will find a complete list of new options within the Revit 2016 R2.

Revit platform tools

  • Draw Visible Elements Only
  • Global Parameters
  • Family Element Visibility Preview
  • Thermal Zoning
  • Enhanced Revit links
  • Cancel Multisheet Print/Export
  • View Filter UI improvements
  • Revision enhancements
  • Isolate solids/voids with filter tool
  • Per-user RVT Unload
  • Improved Project Browser
  • Named reference plane

Revit for Architecture

  • Autodesk Raytracer
  • Wall Join Type
  • Railing Preview
  • View Underlay

Revit for MEP

  • Background processing of color fills
  • Fabrication Part Modeling improvements
  • Enhanced rotation controls
  • Insert Part option
  • Show Service
  • Place as Tap
  • Electrical Design enhancements
  • Default circuit rating
  • Default distribution system on panel

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