I have a dataset that is in a WGS84_UTM projected coordinate system, can I force the Field Calculator to use another coordinate system when I use it to calculate areas using pythons !shape.area@squareyards! ?

My question is similar to checking "Use coordinate system of the data frame" in calculate geometry when the data frames projection is different; I would use this method but it does not have the option to calculate Square Yards. I could reproject the data to a new feature class, then calculate it and perform a join, or calculate the area in square feet using the data frames projection and dividing by 9, but since I will be doing this often the field calculator route would be the best way to go.

2 Answers 2


I would try using cursors for this type of situation. Take a look at Update Cursors and SpatialReference objects. The update cursor can replace a field calculator process in arcpy. Area tokens can be used to calculate area in another coordinate system, which can then be converted to other units. Take a look at this question.

  • I was hoping I could do this in the field calculator instead of a Update Cursor, but it doesn't sound like it can be done.
    – Pete
    Commented Oct 8, 2013 at 18:03

You can simply use !shape.area@SQUAREYARDS! (or in 10.2 to be more accurate, !shape.geodesicarea@SQUAREYARDS!), wouldn't that be sufficient?

  • I want to use the !shape.area@SQUAREYARDS!, but have that function calculate the area using a different projection than the one the feature class is using.
    – Pete
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 20:32

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.