A pipeline of three tools for the construction of high-quality macro modules or library cells is described. TOPOGEN is a synthesis tool that takes a logic description at the gate level and converts it into a symbolic layout of a static CMOS circuit on a virtual (course ) grid. EDISTIX is an interactive virtual grid editor for the creation or modification of symbolic sticks diagrams. ZORRO is a two-dimensional compactor using the concept of "Zone refining" to generate the mask geometry from the symbolic layout. The generation of the final layout of a cell is a two-step process using an intermediate symbolic representation on a virtual grid. In this intermediate state, the user can interactively make changes.