I want to create a multimodal network dataset for the city of Montreal. I have roads and transit lines features for Quebec province (where Montreal is). Because I need the features limited to Montreal only, I clipped them using Clip tool in geoprocessing menu with Montreal census tracts layer as the clipping feature. Now, the problem is that Montreal has water bodies which are not a part of census tract layer. The areas of water bodies are therefore blank spaces between census tracts. The clipping procedure cuts the roads and transit lines where they pass over the water bodies. This, obviously, can't be used for creating an accurate network datset. Which tool can I use to clip the road and transit lines feature classes to city of montreal census tract layer only, without cutting them? Alternatively, is it possible that I create network datset for the whole province and then clip it?

  • 1
    why not clip with the convex hull or bounding rectangle for Montreal rather than the census tracts.
    – user681
    Aug 7, 2013 at 15:14
  • Hi Dan, I have only 2 polygon layers for Montreal: (1) Census Tracts (2) Landuse. Both the layers (shapefiles) have No Data for water bodies and this means that there is a 'white space' between census tracts (or landuses). I didn't understand when you said 'for Montreal rather than the census tracts'. By 'Montreal' I mean the layer of census tracts for Montreal. Also, I don't know about the convex hull and bounding rectangle. I am a relatively new user of ArcGis and these terms are new for me. I searched them in help but the results displayed topics related to Python, which also, is new for me
    – beginagain
    Aug 7, 2013 at 15:45
  • see posts regarding filling/removing holes. you'll have to clip by a new polygon without the lakes, see eliminate: resources.arcgis.com/en/help/main/10.1/index.html#//…
    – mwil
    Aug 7, 2013 at 16:02

1 Answer 1


you could try a select by spatial location and select all the roads that intersect the census tract file. you will end up with some fiddly bits around the edges and could simply edit them out. The other options would take too long to explain (ie, create a bounding polygon, then intersect the roads with it, is one option.)


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