I have a polygon feature class(Parcel) that I want to append to another polygon feature class(FinalParcel). The schemas do not match. I'm trying to determine the best way to update Parcel so that it has a matching schema to FinalParcel without using Python.

Is there a way to combine an empty template feature class with the Parcel feature class to yield the right schema so append can be used?

Answer: Yes. I ran a definition query for nonsense on the FinalParcel FC and then exported the data. This gave me an empty SHP with just the field names and no data. In ArcCatalog, I then created my "TemplateFC" by creating a new polygon FC and importing the table from the empty SHP copy.

Next, I was able to append the Parcel FC to the TemplateFC by using a No Test append.

  • As per the Tour there should be only one question asked per question.
    – PolyGeo
    Feb 6, 2018 at 20:50
  • You know of the field mapping option of Append right? There is no need for python to use it
    – BERA
    Feb 7, 2018 at 15:31
  • @BERA, I do but I am hoping to eventually automate the process for identical future projects. Feb 7, 2018 at 15:44
  • How are you going to match the fields? By likeness in name?
    – BERA
    Feb 7, 2018 at 15:47
  • I made an empty FC holding the schema from the final parcel I want to append to. I then no test append (just getting geography) the new parcels into that empty FC. There's not a lot of attributes that need to be filled out. Some of them will be the same for each project and can be done through iterating through each polygon (usually 30-50) and inputting a user input value. The other information is just a house number which is retrieved from a point file imported from CAD. I'll iterate through the point file and add the lot numbers using select by location. Feb 7, 2018 at 15:57

1 Answer 1


If this is just a one-off, you could export a working FinalParcel fc, then merge it with Parcel fc, now just using field calculator you could copy the data from the Parcel fields into the FinalParcel columns, lastly deleting the old Parcel fields and you're left with a FinalParcel fc to merge with the correct schema.

  • I was trying to build a model builder for it to replicate on future projects. Unfortunately, while I successfully found a way to append the files it's not appending all of the data. That's a separate issue though and I will ask it in a new question. Feb 7, 2018 at 15:21

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