I'm working with parcel data to get the dimensions of each lot to correspond with known dimensions. Is there a way to display the individual lengths of each line comprising the perimeter of a polygon? In other words, is there a way to display the distance between each vertex of a polygon in the map while editing?


4 Answers 4


I think you will want to create a parcel fabric

parcel fabric screenshot from ESRI docs


check out the 'feature to line' tool within the Data Management Tools-->Features toolbox. This should help you. You'll need to convert your polygons to lines and then you can label based on the length field.

  • It looks like that will get me most of the way there. I realize I'm probably asking too much when I say I'd like it to update as I edit the polygons. This is a nice solution though, and a big help, thanks.
    – Eric
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 17:52
  • There may be another solution but a polygon measures the distance/area of the entire feature whereas the line just measures the segment. You might be able to incorporate it all into a model/script if you are feeling frisky, but being able to see segment changes on the fly without converting will probably be difficult.
    – Craig
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 18:00

I'm sure someone, somewhere, has done this before using ArcObjects. However my search attempts turned up nothing, the most promising thing I found was this, but it's for 9.3 only so I can't test it: Drafting tools for ArcGIS 9.3

If you don't mind clicking a bit, you could use the measure tool (it can snap to vertices for better accuracy).

Edit: Here's some VBA code that might work: http://forums.esri.com/Thread.asp?c=93&f=993&t=101658


I would create a new field for the length of each line segment. Using calculate field with Python, you can run this:


This will calculate feet from the shape.length of each line segment. Then you can label the line like any other geodatabase object.

If need be, you could create an annotation feature class to display the labels at different sizes for different map scales.

That would be the easiest method, I think.

  • I don't think you can calculate the length between vertices. A polygon has rings, not individual lines also.
    – klewis
    Commented Jan 14, 2016 at 20:03

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