What's New in Revit 2021 | Core & Architecture?

An overview of the new features and updates in Revit Core and Architecture 2021

What's New in Revit 2021 | Core & Architecture?

The latest release of Revit is upon us – 2021 as it continues to be named a year ahead. The other continuing theme is one of constant evolution rather than big step changes.

Revit 2021 also contains the enhancements released through the ‘point’ releases during the 2020 year. There was two point releases this year, 2020.1 and 2020.2. If you haven’t had these installed, then there is quite a bit that’s new in 2021, but not so much if you keep up to date with the point releases.

In this blog, we will outline the new features in Revit 2021 that relate to the Core and Architectural aspects of the product. 

The Public Road Map for the future of Revit has three categories of development; Create, Optimize and Connect. Creating the model, optimizing the workflows and interface within Revit, and connecting with external data, either Revit or non-Revit data.

Create New Features

Slanted Walls
Following on from the elliptical walls in the last release, we now have the ability to slant, or lean, walls away from vertical. Previously to achieve this, a Mass would need to be modelled and then a Wall by Face applied to the Mass, so this gives us a much cleaner workflow. Although there are some limitations, such as the wall profile cannot be edited for a slanted wall, which means we may still have to use the old way in certain circumstances.

Overall, this will be a welcome addition to the Revit toolset.

Voids in Families
When creating a family, the option for a Void object to cut Solid objects can now be toggled via a parameter. This is done via a checkbox and will allow us to build families where options to have holes or openings can be easily incorporated. As the parameter is a Yes/No parameter, they can be linked with visibility of other objects to the same family parameter.

This is a great enhancement to the family creation workflow.

Generative Design
Generative design has been on the horizon for some time now. Project Refinery has been the Autodesk development version available for public testing, via Dynamo, in previous releases. However, in 2021 Generative Design is now incorporated direct into the interface.

This is an interesting development that has great potential for future workflows and is worthwhile keeping abreast of.


Enable View Filters 
Now in 2021, we have the ability to enable or disable filters in views. This is a welcome addition as the only way previously to ‘turn off’ a filter was to delete it, which meant a lot of applying and re-applying view templates.

This feature will clean up the workflow and be a good addition to our toolset.
Enhanced Realistic Shading
The Realistic shading mode for viewports has been improved significantly. The Raytrace mode has been removed and the Realistic mode improved to give getter graphics and faster navigation. Although not a replacement for Enscape or other rendering tools, it does now give useable views with better contrast definition and automatic exposure controls.

Rotate Annotation
Section marker text can now be aligned with the section line itself. Until now any sections cut at anything other than horizontal meant the marker text could overlap the section head itself and become un-readable. Now we can choose for the section head to ‘rotate with component’ meaning it will align with the section line and longer sheet numbers will look tidier on the referencing plan.

This will certainly help in the presentation of drawings, specially with the long sheet names required by BIM workflows.

Path of Travel
The Path of Travel feature introduced in 2020 has had some enhancements. We can now add waypoints, use grips to manipulate the start and end points, reveal obstacles and schedule to and from rooms.

This feels like a more complete tool than when first introduced.

Workspace on install
Upon installation of 2021, there is an option to create a workspace related to your role. Answer a few questions about your discipline and role and Revit will turn of the display of certain ribbon tabs not related to your role.
As this only happens upon installation, I’m not sure how useful it will be in larger companies where deployments are commonplace. It will be interesting to see how it develops in future releases.


Link PDF/Images
In 2020 the ability import PDFs was added to Revit which was something we’d all been waiting to be introduced for years! Well now, in 2021, they are available as a linked object, which is what they should have been from the start. So now we can unload, reload and reload from… as we can with DWGs and other Revit models. The same linking functionality has also been added to image files too.
This is a welcome addition that has been long overdue.

Bridge Categories
We have some new categories in 2021, based around infrastructure. Bridges, Piers, Abutments, Expansion Joints and Bearings, as well as a few others. These will help us manage the collaboration with Civil Engineers using the Civil Structures workflow and Infraworks.
With BIM expanding into all areas of construction, these new infrastructure categories will help collaboration on large projects.


In summary, the 2021 release continues the on-going development of Revit as our preferred design tool. There aren’t any huge changes, but the new features that are here are worthwhile additions. The slanted walls, section marker alignment, voids in families or linking PDFs are enhancements that will benefit everyday workflows and should be investigated further.

Watch our video below to see these new features and updates in action:

Note: The below webinar recording was created by Excitech prior to becoming Symetri in January 2021, following its acquisition by Addnode Group. All Excitech products, services and solutions mentioned in this recording are available through Symetri.


To learn more about Revit, please visit our product page or call us on 0345 370 1444 or email info@symetri.co.uk