Within single shapefile I am trying to clip overlapping polygons to their boundaries using centre line of overlapped area using Postgis or ogr2ogr.


I tried to use ogr2ogr command to remove slivers

ogr2ogr dissolved.shp input.shp -dialect sqlite \
-sql "select ST_union(ST_buffer(Geometry, 10)),common_attribute from input GROUP BY common_attribute"

But every polygon in my shapefile got only unique attribiutions so I cannot use ST_UNION.

I tried also to use ST_Difference postgreSQL database with the Postgis extension but also without success.

My main problem is that i can not find method to clip polygons on equal sharing size.


Here is a solution in postgis that fits the use-case (image) that you describe. There are some assumptions though:

  1. It assumes simple (non multi) polygons
  2. Every polygon is only intersected by 1 other polygon (you can fix that, but it requires more coding).
  3. There will be a straight line between the cutting points of the polygon (that may not be the center line that you are looking for)

WITH polygons AS (
    SELECT 1 as id, ST_Buffer(ST_MakePoint(10,10),3) geom
    SELECT 2 as id, ST_Buffer(ST_MakePoint(5,10),3) geom
    --Uncomment this to see what happens when multiple polygons overlap
    --SELECT 3 as id, ST_Buffer(ST_MakePoint(7.5,7.5),3) geom
,cut_polygons AS (
    SELECT  a.id, 
        ST_Difference(ST_ExteriorRing(a.geom), b.geom)
      ) geom
    FROM polygons a
    LEFT JOIN polygons b ON (ST_Intersects(a.geom, b.geom) AND a.id != b.id)

SELECT id, ST_MakePolygon(ST_AddPoint(geom, ST_StartPoint(geom))) geom
FROM cut_polygons;

The trick is that the polygons are first converted to linestrings (ST_ExteriorRing) that are cookie-cut by an overlapping polygon (ST_Difference). The result is a linestring (ST_LineMerge) with a gap. When you fill that gap with a straight line (ST_AddPoint) you have a polygon (ST_MakePolygon) that is more or less split at the center of the overlap.

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