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I have grass patches and I put a buffer of 250m around them. I did a "dissolve to get larger polygons that overlap, but the attribute table emitted a lot of information, which are important such as the hectare och area. How do I dissolve, and still keep these vital information. Now the next step I want to accomplish is to "merge" grass patches that are less than 500m apart into a larger polygon. I'm having a very hard time doing this.

I'm using ArcGIS for Desktop 10.1.

What tools would be recommended?

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Thanks for providing that info that I've transferred to tags as well. I'm not able to picture what you are describing so if you can include a diagram that will help. You may not have enough reputation to do that yet so I will +1 your question to try and help with that. In particular I am not clear whether you are say that you have buffers which overlap, do not overlap, or are just touching. – PolyGeo Aug 13 '13 at 7:19
What field are you setting the 'dissolve' by? – HDunn Aug 13 '13 at 9:35
No fields are set to dissolve. – Gunnar Aug 13 '13 at 14:35
up vote 1 down vote accepted

You can run "Intersect" on your buffer polygons producing a true overlap layer. This will produce polygons where the buffers overlap. Then use the True Overlap layer to SelectByLocation from the Buffer layer. This will allow you to Dissolve only Buffers that actually overlap. You can experiment with the Statistic Fields, to Sum Acres for example. Reversing the Selection gives you the Buffers that have no overlap.

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Thank you that helped and I got the result I wanted. How would I go about selecting the polygons that are within the distance of 500m of each other? I've tried Select By Location, but that just highlighted all the polygons. – Gunnar Aug 14 '13 at 6:55

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