- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 15 Nov 2017
For buildings, this can be useful as it gives a view through the spaces and surrounding structures (typically across a vertical plane) that can reveal the relationships between the different parts of the buildings that might not be apparent on plan drawings. Plan drawings are in fact a type of section, but they cut through the building on a horizontal rather than vertical plane.
The direction of the plane through which the section is cut is often represented on plan drawings and elevations by a line of long and short dashes, called a section plane. If there are a number of sections, the line may have letters at each end indicating the name of the section drawing and an arrow showing the direction that the view takes.
The scale of a section drawing will depend on the size of the building being drawn and the level of detail that needs to be shown. Sections may show the entire building, or may focus on a particular component, junction or assembly. In this case they can be similar to assembly drawings but differ in that they don’t usually include details of the actually assembly process.
Different types of cross hatching can be used to differentiate between different types of component on detailed sectional drawings. Standards exist for hatching that should be used on some common materials, for example, double diagonal lines indicate brickwork, a wave indicates insulation and so on.
Perspective sections include 3D projection of the spaces beyond the section plane and can be used to give a graphical illustration of the relationship between spaces and building components as well as their depths that can be very helpful in trying to interpret a complex design.
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- As-built drawings and record drawings.
- Assembly drawing.
- Building information modelling.
- Component drawing.
- Computer aided design.
- Concept drawing.
- Design drawings.
- Detail drawing.
- Engineering drawing.
- General arrangement drawing.
- How to draw a floor plan.
- Installation drawings.
- Manual of Section - review.
- North American Paper Sizes
- Notation and symbols.
- Paper sizes.
- Production information.
- Scale drawing.
- Shop drawings.
- Site plan.
- Technical drawing.
- Types of drawings for building design.
- Working drawing.
 External references
- ‘Building Construction Handbook’ (6th ed.), CHUDLEY, R. and GREENO, R., Butterworth-Heinemann (2007)
Featured articles and news
Timo Hartmann of TU Berlin introduces a themed issue of the ICE Smart Infrastructure and Construction journal.
Freedom of Information request reveals that taxpayers are footing the bill for Carillion's collapse.
Driven piles are used to support buildings, walls and bridges, and can be the most cost-effective deep foundation solution.
Australian landmark celebrates achievement of carbon neutral status five years ahead of schedule.
Non-material amendments can sometimes be necessary after planning permission has been granted. Find out more here.
Six things civil engineers could do to ensure the success of projects.
Dublin housing crisis restricts employers' ability to recruit, according to new U+I research.
Intricate inlays and beautiful patterns can be created with waterjet cutting.
Two historic quarries in environmentally sensitive areas were reopened to repair Exeter Cathedral.
The phrase ‘time at large’ describes the situation where there is no date for completion, or it has become invalid.