How to Insert a Map in AutoCAD

This minHour will teach you how to insert a map in AutoCAD on a Windows or Mac computer. You'll first need to have AutoCAD installed.


Open your project in AutoCAD.

You can launch this app from your Start menu in Windows or the Applications folder in Finder on Mac; then click or select from the “Recent Files” listed on the right side of your screen. You can also right-click the AutoCAD project file in your file manager and select .

Click the Insert tab.

It’s in the menu above the editing space with Home and Featured Apps.

Click Set Location.

You’ll see this is the last option in the menu in the “Location” group.

  • A menu will drop down.

Click From Map.

It’s the first option in the drop-down menu and will open up a map that you can use to search for a location.

  • If you already have a KML or KMZ map file, you can select From File instead.

Search for your location.

Using the search bar at the top of the map window, enter the name of the location you want to include in your map (like “Penn University).

  • You can use the locations in the panel on the left to change the location. You can also click the view (it defaults to “Road”) to change the map view to Road, Aerial, or Bird’s eye’.

Right-click and select Drop Marker Here.

When you have the map situated as you want it, right-click on the map and a menu will appear at your cursor.

  • A red pin will appear on the map where you right-clicked.

Click Next.

It’s in the lower right corner of the window.

Set the coordinate system.

Scroll through the list to see the options of coordinate systems you can choose from.

  • Choose a coordinate system with the same unit reference as your main project. For instance, if your project is set to “Meters,” choose a coordinate system that lists “Meter” under the “Unit” heading.
  • Click the time-zone and drawing unit drop-down menu if you want to change the time zone/drawing unit from the default.

Click Next and click your AutoCAD drawing space.

This will designate the first point that you marked on the map in your AutoCAD drawing.

  • When you click Next, the map will close so you can transfer it to your drawing space.

Designate the “North” direction.

Click on another space in AutoCAD according to the “North” angle that you want to designate in your project.

  • The map will be added once you click to add the northerly direction.
  • Use the “Distance” command to measure the distance between two points. The command prompt is centered at the bottom of your screen and typing “Di” will pull up the correct command.

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