I'm working on building a series of updates to street feature class based on fields inside the class. I was attempting to do this with update cursor to get better performance.

When the Streets_GC_FullName is null, the STREETS_NW_SLIPRD = 2 and STREETS_NW_RAMP=1, then change the Streetname field to "Exit Ramp"

The Cursor runs for a little while but then none of the rows are actually updated. I had tried adding the print statment to see if it was stopping on those rows that matched, but none printed.

So I'm assuming that my row test is failing?

fc = r'C:\GIS\Sept2018_MergeLA.gdb\NW_GC'
fields = ['Streets_GC_FULLNAME', 'Streets_NW_FEATTYP', 'Streets_NW_SLIPRD', 'Streets_NW_RAMP', 'StreetName','Streets_NW_ID']

with arcpy.da.UpdateCursor(fc, fields) as cursor:
    for row in cursor:
        if (row[0] is None and row[3] == 2 and row[4] == 1):
            row[5] == "Exit Ramp"
            # print("Updated"+row[6])
print ("Processing complete")
  • 2
    It sounds like you have no rows where row[0] is None and row[3] == 2 and row[4] == 1. Try printing row[0], row[3] and row[4] just before you test to see if you can spot any rows that should meet the criteria. If you have many thousands to check then just add a where clause like OBJECTID < 10 onto your cursor to keep the output manageable.
    – PolyGeo
    Nov 1, 2018 at 1:40
  • 1
    row[0] is None should be row[0] == None, though depending on how your fields are populated blank may not be None (Null), check also row[0] == 0 or row[0] == '' depending on your field type. Nov 1, 2018 at 1:56
  • For this test I have 2460 fields out of close to 1 million, that show up when doing arcpy.management.SelectLayerByAttribute("NW_GC", "SUBSET_SELECTION", "Streets_GC_FULLNAME IS NULL And Streets_NW_SLIPRD = 2 And Streets_NW_RAMP = 1", None)
    – DanceDad
    Nov 1, 2018 at 1:58
  • 2
    You could create a selection on your layer or supply the query in the update cursor.. if you're creating a selection you should be able to use int(arcpy.GetCount_management("NW_GC").getOutput(0)) to tell if you've got any features that satisfy the query. Nov 1, 2018 at 2:09
  • 1
    What do you get when you print the updated row? If you're running from the toolbox you may need to use arcpy.AddMessage("Updated {}".format(row[6])) to get the message to show up in the tool dialog - also works in CMD and from the python console. Nov 1, 2018 at 3:20

1 Answer 1


There are three problems with your code that I can see:


The line row[5] == "Exit Ramp" should use = (assign a value) not == (testing for equality). row[5] is not actually being assigned a value by the statement as it is. In fact nothing at all is being done by that statement.


Your row indexes appear to be a bit muddled. You have 6 fields in your cursor. They are zero-indexed so the last field is row[5], not row[6]. So I would expect that the (commented out) print statement would crash if uncommented (and processing actually reached that point).

Your fields are:

fields = ['Streets_GC_FULLNAME', 'Streets_NW_FEATTYP', 'Streets_NW_SLIPRD', 'Streets_NW_RAMP', 'StreetName','Streets_NW_ID']


  • row[0] is 'Streets_GC_FULLNAME'
  • row[1] is 'Streets_NW_FEATTYP'
  • row[2] is 'Streets_NW_SLIPRD'
  • row[3] is 'Streets_NW_RAMP'
  • row[4] is 'StreetName'
  • row[5] is 'Streets_NW_ID'
  • row[6] DOES NOT EXIST and is an out-of-range index

So your if statement translates to something like:

if (Streets_GC_FULLNAME is None and Streets_NW_RAMP == 2 and StreetName == 1)

Do you really have any features with StreetName == 1 ? I would guess that StreetName is a string, so testing for equality with 1 is probably not what you really want.


Assuming problem 1 gets fixed...

Similarly, row[5] = "Exit Ramp" (single '=') would translate to something like Streets_NW_ID = "Exit Ramp"

From your question, I don't think this is what you intended.


You said in your question that you wanted to test for:

Streets_GC_FullName is null, the STREETS_NW_SLIPRD = 2 and STREETS_NW_RAMP=1, then change the Streetname field to "Exit Ramp"

This should be something like (untested):

        if row[0] is None and row[2] == 2 and row[3] == 1
            row[4] = "Exit Ramp"
            print "Updated {}".format(row[5])
  • Thank You... The root of all of my problems was my muddled indexes. I kept counting from 1 instead of 0 and getting my fields confused. After resolving the indexes everything is good. What i was trying to do was update the StreetName field to Exit Ramp not test that particular field.
    – DanceDad
    Nov 1, 2018 at 23:16

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