Sometimes a map contains features that share common boundaries. For example, an electoral map showing electoral district boundaries, a geological map showing multiple geological formations, or a world map showing country borders. When editing a map with common boundaries, moving a shared boundary simultaneously ensures the features with shared geometry are seamlessly integrated without gaps in the merged feature class.
The map below shows two federal territories (Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya) and two districts in the state of Selangor (Petaling and Hulu Langat) in Malaysia, which are adjacent to each other. These different shapefiles are merged and subjected to map topology to ease editing or boundary refinement.
The following workflow describes how to edit the common boundary of polygons from different shapefiles:
The following image is the feature class generated after merging the shapefiles.
Warning: Ensure all the layers for editing are enabled (visible). This is important because topology editing on an enabled layer does not automatically update the geometry of the disabled (hidden) layer.
Note: The Cluster Tolerance field under the Options section specifies the default value of the distance that ArcMap considers coincident. The default value is the minimum possible value. Increasing this value results in more features considered as coincident.
Warning: Using tools other than within the Topology toolbar (for example, using the Editor toolbar) to edit a common boundary causes the coincident boundary to be lost.