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Error: Spatial reference must be a projected coordinate system" when using the Load a Topology to a Parcel Fabric tool

Error Message

Spatial reference must be a projected coordinate system.

Spatial Reference error for Load a Topology to a Parcel Fabric tool.

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Cause

The Load a Topology to a Parcel Fabric tool only allows the user to load data existing in a Projected Coordinate System (PCS). However, the input topology data uses a Geographic Coordinate System (GCS), such as NAD83.

This is a known limit. The Parcel Fabric can be in a GCS, but the data participating in the topology must be in a PCS using the same GCS. For example:

Topology data:
NAD_1983_StatePlane_North_Carolina_FIPS_3200_Feet
NC_StatePlane

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Parcel Fabric:
GCS_North_American_1983

Solution or Workaround

The data participating in the topology must be projected. Instructions provided below describe the process.

  1. Select a PCS that matches the Parcel Fabric's GCS. If the Parcel Fabric is stored with a PCS, make sure the selection is exactly the same.
  2. Create a new Feature Dataset using the selected PCS. Right-click the geodatabase, and navigate to New > Feature Dataset. Give the dataset a unique name, and use the selected PCS.
  3. Delete the topology from the original Feature Dataset. This must be done in order to run the Project tool. Make a copy of the user's data if the topology is still needed for other work.
  4. Use the Project tool to transform the original topology data into the PCS. Set the output to the new Feature Dataset, and give the output Feature Class a unique name. Apply any transformations needed between the coordinate systems.
  5. Rebuild the topology in the new Feature Dataset using the same rules.
  6. Validate the topology and fix any errors.
  7. Run the Load a Topology to a Parcel Fabric tool. This allows the user to have the correct format to run this tool.

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