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I am creating feature classes from GNS txt files in ArcCatalog (10.2). When I do this with the file for Bolivia (bl.txt), the feature class is created correctly. When I try to do this with the file for Argentina, the columns LONG and LAT are recognized as Text instead of Double, so I cannot assign them as X and Y fields.

The formats for both files are identical. Both ar.txt and bl.txt contain only numeric values in the columns LONG and LAT, with . as decimal separator. I cannot identify any differences between the two files to explain the different behavior. Is there a way to force ArcGIS to recognize these columns as double precision fields?

As a workaround I can import the txt files in an Excel spreadsheet and create the feature class correctly from that, but I believe I shouldn't have to.

marked as duplicate by artwork21, John Powell, Community Nov 30 '15 at 13:41

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  • Thanks, that solves it. I still don't understand how a column containing only numbers can be interpreted correctly sometimes but as Text in other cases. – arjan Nov 30 '15 at 13:45
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Solved following https://gis.stackexchange.com/a/30671/10436 with Schema.ini:

[ar.txt]
Col4="LAT" Double
Col5="LONG" Double

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