I have 3 layers of polygons, each layer with multiple polygons spatially separated, although the layer only counts it as 1 polygon. I have a layer with a line going through these polygons.

What is the best way to measure the line running through each polygon? I would like a measurement for each individual polygon in each layer, even though each layer is only considered as one whole polygon, I want it to be separated. I prefer not to do it manually, as there are over 500 polygons.enter image description here

Above is a picture of a section of the map I have so far.

I'm using ArcMap 10.1.

  • 1
    Can you show a picture of your problem? Also, what software/version, type of solution (GUI, python, etc.) are you using and looking for?
    – phloem
    Feb 3, 2015 at 18:20
  • 1
    The polygon needs to be converted to a (new) singlepart polygon, instead of a single multipart polygon. After that, there are a few different ways to attack the problem. As phloem said above, knowing the software you're using will help narrow down the solution :)
    – Erica
    Feb 3, 2015 at 18:26
  • Sorry, this is my first time asking a question. It is ArcMap 10.1.
    – David Grow
    Feb 3, 2015 at 19:02

2 Answers 2


You need to make them individual polygons, use Multipart to Single Part to explode the geometry into individual geometries.

Intersect the line with the single part polygons which will join attributes of the polygons to the lines; in basic and standard license you are limited to two layers but that should be fine for this task.

After the intersect you should have lines that are contained within each polygon to perform further analysis on.

  1. Merge 3 polygon layers into 1 using analysis-merge, output to feature class in GDB
  2. Intersect merged with polyline layer using analysis-intersect, output (polyline) to feature class in GDB
  3. Use Summary Statistics (Analysis) to summarise shape_length (sum) using polygon OBJECTID as case field.

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