I'm still fairly new to GIS and Python but I have a line feature class with one attribute called "View Side" which indicates which direction the buffer should be. I want to create a Python script to iterate through the attribute table and buffer according to the View Side. I have the following code so far, but the end results (the buffers) contain no attributes and I want all the attributes from the original line feature class to be preserved.

buffercursor = arcpy.SearchCursor(fc_albers)
for rows in buffercursor:
    if rows.getValue("View_Side") == "L":
        side = "LEFT"
    elif rows.getValue("Observation_side") == "R":
        side = "RIGHT"
arcpy.Buffer_analysis(rows.Shape, fc_buffers2, 250, side, "FLAT", "NONE")
arcpy.Append_management (fc_buffers2, target, 'NO_TEST', '', '')

Why am I doing this? This is a type of walk and view survey. I want to be able to append things to a "master file" down the line. The goal here is everytime I receive a shapefile, I could just plug it in and it'll create these buffers. I could always just select all that are L/R and buffer those and combine them, but this isn't what I'm looking for.

  • 3
    Note, this doesn't answer your question, but you are using an outdated search cursor. You'll have better results with the search cursor in the da module. desktop.arcgis.com/en/arcmap/10.3/analyze/arcpy-data-access/… – Fezter Dec 20 '16 at 3:25
  • 2
    Also you should indent elif statement to be with the same level with if statement, and side = "LEFT" and side = "RIGHT" should be also indented one level. – ahmadhanb Dec 20 '16 at 3:58

The side parameter used by the Buffer tool will correspond to the last result of the if/elif check. So all features will be buffered using this same side value.

Buffer runs only once, with one side parameter, you can't have it choose a different side for each feature.

Using cursors is not appropriate in this case, I would select all features with "View_Side" == "L" (using Make Feature Layer), buffer them on the left side, then repeat the operation for features with "Observation_side" == "R" and a right side buffer, then merge both buffers. You can save both intermediate buffers in_memory if you want to avoid intermediate data.

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