I have found several threads seeking advice on using model railroad CAD applications to draw track plans. Since I am starting to refine my rough track plan using "real" layout dimensions and I am in the process of learning XTrkCad, I thought it would be useful to post a running thread of my progress.
I am currently designing a multi-level N-scale layout that fully occupies a 19x9' room. To this point, my track plan has been roughed-in using Micrsosoft Visio. However, I have now completed all of the benchwork and am ready to start installing roadbed and laying track. To do this, I want to have an actual precise track plan designed in a real model railroad CAD application so I can be sure that all of the track arrangements are correctly laid out complete with correctly engineered design elements such as easements.
Over the years, I have used several model railroad CAD applications (CADRail, 3rd Plan-it, XTRkCad, etc.). However, I really was just playing around and never did any serious track planning. I have chosen XTrkCad this time around for two reasons: (1) the price is right (FREE!) and (2) I have seen several great track plans that were created using it. Since this thread represents my "learn as I go" experience, please feel free to offer corrections or improvements to my process where needed.
I could go on and on but instead I'm just going to jump in and get started. Hope this thread proves to be helpful to others!