Right now I am working on a project where I have a road network, and I have a layer with points on a bus route. I am trying to trace these points along the road network to create bus routes. It was working fine for the first few routes I did, but then when I started another route, it started acting really weird. It won't really go along the road network anymore, instead creating erratic lines that don't go along anything, often lines that don't even start where I originally click. The coordinate systems of all my layers are the same. What's happening here?

  • It sounds like a more analytical approach could be better. The roads are there and tracing along those lines to create a parallel data set sounds like hard work and prone to errors. Buffer your points so that you are sure they intersect with the roads network. Then take it from there with join, intersect or similar. After some work you will end up with a data set where nodes in the roads network have the attributes of the bus stations. I guess network analyst (?) or similar could be helpful. Add some more information about how many bus stations and how many miles/kms of road the system is. – ragnvald Jun 5 '15 at 19:50
  • If you have network analyst, making routes out of all the associated stop points might be faster, but that depends on if your 'network' is actually a clean/useable network. Trace can be difficult to use in cases where you start getting a lot of overlapping features. There are any number of things that could be going wrong, from corrupted files or installs to overlapping features to problematic snapping settings/tolerances. Some screenshots might be helpful, as well as a detailed description of the clicks made (ie start line, snap to vertex, trace tool, start tracing, etc). – Chris W Jun 5 '15 at 22:15
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    I faced a similar behaviour. ArcGIS was tracing objects on not visible layers. I got cracy until I realized this. – Detlev Jun 6 '15 at 15:02

So I couldn't figure out what was wrong but I created a new arcmap file and reloaded the shapefiles onto it and everything was working properly again.

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