There is a layer containing all buildings from the electric landbase dataset. And a layer containing buildings from the gas landbase. The problem is, they are different and overlap each other. And I need to do the reconciliation of them both.

So, I do a selection of all the gas buildings which are WITHIN the 5m buffered electric buildings, and from that do a selection of all the electric buildings which are WITHIN the 5m buffered selected gas buildings.

For some building those shapes are very different between the electric and gas. So other method is to calculate the centroid points of all the buildings (gas and electric) and see how far from a gas building's centroid to the electric's. Together with comparison of shape area. If falling within an acceptable range then it's okay.

Arcgis 9 doesn't seem to have any tools supporting my second method. Any other methods? Or how am I gonna do this?

  • 1
    Which of the two is more accurate? I mean, if they give a totally different picture, one of them has to be more accurate, no?
    – jonatr
    Jul 18, 2011 at 5:30
  • The Gas data is more accurate, so if a gas building overlaps an electric one, then the gas one will be chosen for the final dataset.
    – Nicholas
    Jul 18, 2011 at 5:53
  • OK, and your version is ArcGIS 9.0, or a later version? (I don't think I remember that far back, but I'll try to instruct you as far as I do)
    – jonatr
    Jul 18, 2011 at 11:29
  • I'm having ArcInfo license (9.3.1). But will be upgrading to version 10 soon if needed.
    – Nicholas
    Jul 19, 2011 at 7:58

2 Answers 2


I'm not sure what version of ArcGIS 9 you are using , but in 9.3.1 you could use the Feature to Point tool and the Near tool (both at the ArcInfo level).

A free alternative, you could use the Polygon to Point tool in ET Geowizard, and the Point Distance (ArcMap 9) tool or the Distance Between Points Tool (Hawths's Analyssis Tools for ArcGIS).

  • Yup, Using to Feature to Point tool I created separated layers from those 2 polygon layers (gas and electric) Then I was able to select those Gas-Points which are 5m away from Electric-Points. From that I could choose the correspondent Gas buildings. But then the problem is how to compare those Gas building to the correct Electric building by the Shape_Area attribute. The logic is Difference between (Gas's Shape_Area - Electric's Shape_Area ) = -50 -> 50 . I am very new to GIS industry so pardon me if I made any mistakes :)
    – Nicholas
    Jul 19, 2011 at 8:13
  • Furthermore, some buildings have their centroids out of the shapes :D
    – Nicholas
    Jul 19, 2011 at 8:17
  • I've just got the idea of how different in term of Shape_Area that a gas building could be from an electric building. It should be based on one's Shape_Area right? Cant use -50 -> 50 all the time. That's another issue.
    – Nicholas
    Jul 19, 2011 at 9:03
  • An Electric building 's Shape_Area should be different by 10% + / - from the corresponding Gas building. I guess that will do.
    – Nicholas
    Jul 19, 2011 at 9:13
  1. If you want to work with polygon centeroids, here's a link that tells how to make centroid point layers out of the polygon layers.

  2. I wanted to tell you about a different or a complementary approach. How about trying the topology tool?

You put both layers in the same Personal geodatabase(PGDB), and in that PGDB you create a new topology using ArcCatalog - you define in the topology all of the rules you want (such as polygons of LAYER A should overlay polygons of LAYER B) and then you go to ArcMap, upload the topology and see all results.

for reference about building a topology see this

for reference about using a topology in ArcMap see this (especially sections 1,2,7,8-12).

(the two above references are a part of the ArcGIS Desktop Tutorials).

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