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Is there anyway to merge a line Shapefile Feature Class and a polygon Shapefile Feature Class?

ERROR 000468

Input shape types are not equal

8

Shapefiles can store only single type of geometry (in your case either polygons or lines, not both). So, a shapefile cannot contain both lines and polygons.

Another thing is that a single feature should have a discrete geometry type. Certain geometric operations cannot be performed on multiple geometry types without converting one or both of them.

Depending on what you expect to get as an output feature, you can convert your polygons to lines or buffer a line to make it a polygon.

  • Thank you. Buffering my lines to make them polygons did the trick! I'm limiting the zoom level, so the feature does not have to be exact. That was just the work around I was looking for! – WolverineTime Aug 19 '16 at 19:09
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    @WolverineTime, awesome, glad it worked out well for you. – Alex Tereshenkov Aug 19 '16 at 20:02
  • Yes - thank you for providing a practical solution to the issue! :) – WolverineTime Aug 22 '16 at 13:22
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You cannot store polygons, lines or points in the same feature class. What you can do is create a feature dataset. A feature dataset is a collection of related feature classes that share a common coordinate system. Feature datasets are used to spatially or thematically integrate related feature classes. Does this help? You can maintain your lines and polygons feature classes in the feature dataset for ease of use.

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    That's a way to store some datasets in a geodatabase. You would need to create a gdb first (what is a good practice). But even if you do that you can't perform operations with different geometry types simultaneously what makes sense in the same layer. Imagine you have two layer with features from different geometry types and you want to intersect them. You can't know exactly what the output geometry types result would be. – Jose Hermosilla Rodrigo Aug 17 '16 at 18:23
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    This is all true.. But I don't think I needed to specify that a dataset is maintained in a geodatabase.. Should I tell them where to right click and create it too? Look at the question and take it for what it is. Someone is on day one of GIS. Essentially the answer to their question is "no". – dpalm Aug 17 '16 at 18:27
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You can merge Line FC's and Polygon FC's into a new Polygon FC using "Feature to Polygon". An Advanced License is required.

  • Only where the lines are closed or completely cutting existing polygon features... otherwise a lot of dangling lines are simply omitted, which may be fine if that's what's expected but generally loosing features isn't a good thing. It would be better to merge all boundaries and lines together either with Feature to Line, Polygon to Line or by editing the lines and copy/paste the polygons (will degenerate the polygons to bounding lines). – Michael Stimson Aug 18 '16 at 1:43

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