Is there a way to create attribute subdomains in ArcGIS with clauses? For example, if I'm editing a line feature class of pipes, I create a domain for the pipe type to be either plastic or metal. I want to setup another domain field "Rusted" with a yes/no value. When editing the data in ArcMap, if the pipe is metal, I should get a yes/no coded value option on the "Rusted" field. If it is plastic, I want the "Rusted" field to calculate N/A or perhaps give me other options.

  • A great question, @Steve. Right now the only way to do this I can think of is to use feature templates with predefined values for the isRusted domain (Plastic pipe type features will get nan value) and metal pipes will get Not Rusted as default but the user will be able to change the isRusted to Rusted (and unfortunately even nan since you cannot hide one of the domain values). May 15, 2014 at 19:59

1 Answer 1


I think what you are actually trying/wanting to do is create subtypes as shown in the graphic here. You can then apply domains by subtype.

In your example type would be a domain of plastic and metal, which in turn would be subtypes, and then metal would have a domain of yes/no for rusted, but plastic would have a domain of N/A or whatever other option.

The only other way I know to address this is with Feature Templates, but that would just pre-fill out values as opposed to restricting them.

  • 1
    This ESRI Exercise explains well 'Coded Values' Subtypes resources.arcgis.com/en/help/main/10.2/index.html#//…
    – Mapperz
    May 15, 2014 at 21:03
  • That's it, but be sure that the domains exist before making the subtypes. Sometimes they don't like to stick if you go back and edit them later. There is no way to cascade domains like subtype: pipe, material: plastic, rusted will always be yes/no. You would need a subtype of plastic pipe to affect the IsRusted domain to N/A. May 16, 2014 at 1:12
  • Thanks for the responses everyone. It looks like I need a combination of domains and subtypes. I'm getting ready to go thru the ESRI exercise linked by Mapperz. Thanks again.
    – Steve
    May 16, 2014 at 16:42

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