Home » BIM and Building Design » Gazebo plans and other outdoor structures: pergolas, projecting roofs and canopies design

Gazebo plans and other outdoor structures: pergolas, projecting roofs and canopies design

Gazebo plans and other outdoor structures: pergolas, projecting roofs and canopies design

Gazebo plans and other outdoor structures: the guide to help you designing gazebos, pergolas, projecting roofs and canopies together with definitions, features, DWGs and 3D BIM examples to download

Gazebo plans, similarly to pergolas, shelters or canopies projects, are a fairly demanding activity as a consequence of the considerable implications it entails. For this reason, it is essential to involve technical experts during the design process.

In this article we will address some aspects relating to gazebo designs, starting off with definitions and characteristics.

For each project type you will have the opportunity to download DWG resources, 3D BIM models in EDF format and the software trial version.

Gazebo project render- architectural BIM software, Edificius


Download the 3D BIM models (.edf files) of the different types of projects

Click here to download Edificius, the architectural BIM design software

Gazebo, pergolas, shelters and canopies project

Characteristics and functions

Gazebos, pergolas, shelters and canopies, although apparently similar structures, can actually represent architectural elements that are also significantly different in size, design, purpose and urban impact.


Type of structureCharacteristicsFunction
  • Gazebo
Type of self-supported pavillion structureShading and furnishing
  • Pergolas
Structure supported by vertical posts, sometimes leaning against a wall, partially or totally opened on the upper partShading and furnishing
  • Projecting roof
Small-sized roof without side supportsRepairing the part of wall or door underneath
  • Canopies
Covering supported by pillars sometimes leaning against the wallCovering and sheltering people and things underneath


Gazebo project

gazebo project render- BIM architectural softwareEdificius


We can define the gazebo as a lightweight structure which is, usually, freestanding and not attached to other buildings. In particular, it can be covered on top, opened at the sides and made with a load-bearing structure in wrought iron, aluminum or structural wood.  Sometimes it is closed at sides by easily removable curtains. Occasionally, it is built permanently for open spaces such as gardens or large terraces.

Gazebo project floor plan-BIM architectural software Edificius

Technical characteristics

Generally, the height of gazebos varies between 2.50 and 3 mt, while the covered surfaces vary between 15 and 40 m².

For safety and privacy reasons, it is recommended that each element is placed at about 1.5 meters distance from railings, parapets and fronts of the building. On the other hand, it is advisable to coordinate with other professionals who may be involved (for example, the structural engineer) for planning and implementation.


Download the gazebo project drawing and 3D model

Pergola project

pergola project render graphic-architectural BIM software Edificius


Typically, a pergola is an outdoor structure built to adorn and shade gardens or terraces. It consists of a scaffold, generally supporting climbing plants, made of two or more rows of vertical uprights which are joined together on the top by horizontal elements. It works as a passageway for people and it is normally opened on at least three sides and on the top part.



Some operational tips

  • Consider anchoring the pergola structure firmly to the ground. Consequently, ensure that a suitable depth is defined to guarantee the stability of the structure.
  • Vertical elements must be anchored and closed with cement or fixed to the floor using bolted plates.
  • Consider tiles, textiles, evergreen or deciduous plants to be laid on supporting wooden beams and cover the pergola. Usually, suitable plants are the buganvìllea, the passiflora, or fruit plants such as vine or kiwi.

Gazebo project, pergolas section-BIM architectural software Edificius

Download the 3D model and the pergola project drawings

Projecting roof project

projecting roof project render-graphic-architectural BIM software Edificius


Projecting roofs can be defined as roofing elements overhanging the exterior walls of a building and built without vertical support uprights.

gazebo project projecting roof floor plan - architectural BIM softwareEdificius

Technical characteristics

The projecting roof is a structure composed of vertical elements (such as, wood, iron or other metals) and an overhanging roof (such as, canvas, glass or other materials) which are anchored to the facade of the building. In particular, it has the function of protecting windows, French windows or the walking path from the public sidewalk to the entrance of the building from atmospheric agents.

gazebo project projecting roof - architectural BIM software Edificius

Download the 3D model together with the construction drawings

Canopies project

projecting roof project render- BIM architectural software Edificius


Lastly, the canopy is an overhead structure to provide shade and shelter. It consists of a cover laying on posts or pillars or any discontinuous vertical structures, either attached or not attached to a building’s external wall.

Hence, its function is to repair and protect the area it covers, thus increasing the habitability of the building. It is distinguished from the pergola because of its potential greater consistency and visual impact. In fact, while the pergola is an open structure both on the external sides and on the upper part and is intended to create shade, the canopy can also be used as a shelter and to increase the livability of the building.

Gazebo project canopy floor plan- BIM architectural software Edificius

Technical characteristics

First of all, you need to consider the space available and to define the area to shelter:

  • A possibility can be represented by securing posts in a concrete casting or opting to fix steel poles for anchoring the vertical structure
  • Poles-pillars must usually be fixed 40 cm underground and their number should depend on the size of the roof
  • It is important to anchor the entire load-bearing structure with brackets to be fixed in the supporting wall

gazebo project canopy section - BIM architectural software Edificius


Download the canopy project drawings and 3D model

Download the 3D models of the gazebos

Below, you can find available for download the 3D models of the gazebos, pergolas, projecting roofs and canopies projects.


Download the 3D BIM models (.edf files) of the different types of projects

Click here to download Edificius, the architectural BIM design software