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Problem: Unable to display X and Y fields in the Display XY Data dialog box


After importing an Excel table with longitude and latitude values into ArcMap, the X and Y Fields are blank in the Display XY Data dialog box.



This issue occurs when the latitude and longitude field data types are incorrectly set.

Solution or Workaround

  1. In the Table Of Contents, right-click the Excel table, and select Data > Export. Browse to the specific location, specify the name of the file (the default name is Export_Output), and Save as type: dBase table.
  1. In the Do you want to add the new table to the current map? pop-up, click Yes.
  1. Right-click the newly created table, and click Open to open the Table dialog box.
  2. Go to Table Options and select Add Field to add a new field.
  1. In the Add Field dialog box, specify the name and type of field for the longitude and latitude. For example, use:
    1. Name: Longitude1, Type: Double
    2. Name: Latitude1, Type: Double
  2. To start editing the table, navigate to the Editor toolbar and select Start Editing.
  3. When prompted, select the newly created table.
  4. Right-click the Longitude1 header and select Field Calculator.
  5. In the Field Calculator dialog box, double-click the pre-existing longitude field. Click OK.
  6. Repeat steps 8 and 9 for the Latitude1 field.
  7. Close the table. Save and stop the editing session.
  8. In the Table Of Contents, right-click the Export_Output table, and select Display XY Data.
  9. In the Display XY Data dialog box, select Longitude1 for the X Field and Latitude1 for the Y Field  to specify the coordinates. Click Edit.
  10. Navigate to the desired coordinate system, for example:
    Geographic coordinate system > North America > NAD 1983

Related Information

Last Published: 1/20/2021

Article ID: 000012115