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Buildings and terrain as IFC files

swisstopo offers building and terrain data in IFC format. Specialists now have access to optimized environment data for BIM projects (Building Information Modeling). These datasets are useful for visualizations in BIM viewers and for the combination with other BIM data.

Cover picture: Service IFC

Orders for datasets in IFC format, exported from the products swissBUILDINGS3D 3.0 Beta and swissALTI3D, can be placed with swisstopo. The terrain model and the building models within a defined project area are delivered as separate IFC files. IFC (Industry Foundation Classes) is an open data exchange format. Project participants can easily exchange digital 3D models using this standard format and import them into various applications.

Product properties

IFC package:

  • Data export of buildings and terrain as IFC is focused on smaller project areas.
  • Buildings and terrain are stored in separate IFC files.
  • The rectangular export area is specified by two corner points (Bounding Box).
  • The data are available in the Swiss coordinate system LV95 or in a local coordinate system (zero-point center, zero-point bottom left).
  • The data is exported as IFC 4.


  • The buildings are configured as independent objects (ifcBuilding).
  • Where already available, the Federal Building Identifier (EGID) is used as the Building ID.
  • The corresponding information of a building is stored in ifcBuilding.
  • Each building, which already contains the EGID, is assigned its address (source: Official directory of building addresses).
  • The buildings consist of the building solid (ifcWall) and the roof solid (ifcRoof).
  • Buildings that touch the border of the export area are fully exported and extend beyond the terrain.


  • The terrain can be exported as a block model (Solid) or surface model.
  • The generalisation of the terrain is done with a tolerance value of 0.5 meters.
  • Distinctive terrain shapes such as ridges, peaks as well as significant differences in elevation are maintained even with generalisation.

Sample data IFC

The sample data covers an area along the border between the cantons of Thurgau and St. Gallen. In the canton of Thurgau, the building models already include the EGID. In the canton of St. Gallen, the EGID has not yet been introduced in the swisstopo product. The differences between the building models with and without EGID are thus visible in the sample data.

Data order

In order to be able to export the IFC dataset according to your requirements, please provide the following specifications:

  • Definition of the area: Swiss coordinates defining the bottom left and top right rectangular area of intrest (Bounding Box)
  • Coordinate system: Swiss coordinate system LV95 or local coordinate system (zero-point center, zero-point bottom left)
  • Model type Terrain: Block model (Solid) or Surface model

Send an e-mail with these specifications to and we will gladly provide you with a quote.

Further information

More detailed product information about the used datasets is available in the product pages of swissBUILDINGS3D 3.0 Beta and swissALTI3D.

Here, you can find additional information about the geoBIM strategy swisstopo.

The 3D geodata and visualisations listed here are customised at the request of the client. They are not included in our download offer and belong to the geodata that cannot be downloaded directly. For this reason, provision fees are charged when an order is placed. Further information can be found here: Geodata - swisstopo ( For additional information or orders, you can also contact