Very often we need to buffer some features
and get the attributes from the original features. "But this is pretty
easy" many people will say - "it is a standard tool in
ArcGIS" - and they will be correct... Unless the buffers of the
features do overlap each other which in many cases is undesirable.
In this article we will offer an approach of
creating non-overlapping buffers (one polygon per original feature) that
will carry the attributes of the original features.
|Source dataset - the
points that we want to buffer. Those might be historical monuments around
which we wont to define conservation areas. We would like however each
monument to be represented by a polygon and do not want these
conservation areas to overlap.
Standard Buffer applied
"Buffer" tool (if Dissolve Type = "NONE" is used)
will give us a polygon per original feature. Each polygon will carry
the attributes of the original feature. The problem however is that in
many cases the buffer polygons will overlap each other.
Standard buffer with
dissolve "ALL" used.
|STEP 1: If we use the standard
"Buffer" tool with Dissolve Type = "ALL", we will
get non overlapping buffers, we will not be able to add the original
attributes to the buffers because there will be some buffer polygons
that have several original features inside.
The question that we have to answer is how to partition the buffers
created in this fashion so that each original feature gets its own
|The Thiessen polygons
created from the original points
|STEP 2: We can use the Build
Thiessen Polygons function to separate the space of the original
dataset in such a way that a polygon (area of influence) is assigned
to each original feature.
In order to make sure that the Thiessen polygons cover the entire
extent of the buffered polygons created in STEP 1:
- use the option to clip the Thiessen polygons with the buffered
- Use a buffer distance larger than the distance used for
Now we need to find a way to split the buffers for all points
created in STEP 1. with the Thiessen polygons and each original point
will have its own buffer polygon.
STEP 3: Intersect the Thiessen Polygons with the buffers created in
A model of the