So I have a feature class : City Limits

I have set it to have a fill of 50% gray. This places a gray shade over the entire city.

I have a 'Map Page' polygon feature class called 'Map Page' which is a square mile boundary outlining the basic contents necessary for each map book page. I am building a data driven mapbook based on the 'Map Page' feature. The Data Driven pages are showing 110% of each Map Page, meaning that for each Data Driven page there is roughly a 1/5th of a mile border around the Map Page feature made visible additionally. I have clipped the data frame to the data driven index feature (Map Page) and now it is showing the 50% gray fill (from the City Limits feature) inside of each Map Page boundary.

I want to have the 50% gray fill of the City Limits ONLY SHOW UP OUTSIDE of the Map Page boundaries (which would put it ONLY visible between the map page boundary and the printable area of each data driven page. This would mean that each page that gets printed would show a gray border around each Map Page boundary that runs to the edge of the print area. Instead, when I setup clipping, it shows the 50% gray INSIDE the Map Page boundary and it's blank outside of it.

Can anyone help me out? I basically want to INVERT the clip so that the City Limits feature does NOT clipped inside the MAP PAGE boundary, but shows up outside of the boundary.

  • 1
    Can you add an illustration please, it seems that I did not understand what you want.
    – radouxju
    Feb 24, 2014 at 6:32

2 Answers 2


If I understand well what you want, here is what you could do :

1) intersect your "map pages" polygons with your "city limits" (so you have the map page attribute of the new polygon with the geometry of your city limits.

2) create a layer to show the definition query ( "field" NOT equal to current map page)

3) with arcpy.mapping, you can change the map page in your definition for each page.

  • 2
    I think the OP can just set the Page Definition Query to not match the current page, so that arcpy would not need to be used as the question does not indicate a need for it based on the current information. Feb 24, 2014 at 5:10
  • @Arabella I think you should add that as an answer - it is the way that I would do it too
    – PolyGeo
    Oct 23, 2014 at 7:39

As commented by @Cindy Williams-Jayakumar on another answer:

I think [you] can just set the Page Definition Query to not match the current page

That way ArcPy would not need to be used.

See How To: Highlight the current index feature when using Data Driven Pages

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