How To: Create a blank basemap for ArcGIS Online
ArcGIS Online does not have a blank basemap by design. However, it is possible to create one in ArcGIS Online.
Use one of the following options to create a blank basemap in ArcGIS Online.
Set the transparency level of the default basemap
- In ArcGIS Online Map Viewer, select basemap from the gallery
- Set the transparency level to Transparent (100%) to make the basemap invisible. Refer to ArcGIS Online: Change transparency for more information.
Create a blank basemap in ArcMap and add it to the basemap gallery in ArcGIS Online
Note: Basemaps added to the gallery must share the same spatial reference. To achieve the best performance, it is recommended that all basemaps added to the gallery are cached (tiled) layers.
- In ArcMap, create a polygon shapefile using the Web Mercator coordinate system, and save the map.
- Publish the shapefile as a service to ArcGIS Server. Follow the default settings for publishing options, except for caching.
- In the Caching tab, for Draw this map service, check the Using tiles from a cache option.
- For Tiling Scheme, select ArcGIS Online/ Bing Maps/ Google Maps from the drop-down list.
- Check the Build cache manually after the service is published check box.
- Click Publish to publish the service to get a blank tiled map service.
- Open the ArcGIS Server Manager site, and select the published tile map service. Click the Capabilities tab and copy the REST URL.
- Using an ArcGIS Online organizational account, create a group, and add all organizational users to the group.
- In ArcGIS Online Map Viewer, create a new map, and add the tiled map service.
- Click Add > Add Layer from Web.
- In the Add Layer from Web dialog box, paste the URL copied in step 3.
- Check the Use as Basemap check box.
- Click ADD LAYER.
- Share the blank basemap with the group created for the organization in step 4.
- Navigate Organization > Settings > Map.
- Under Basemap Gallery, select the blank basemap to use the basemaps from the group created.
Note: Any map shared with this group containing only a basemap layer will be added to the basemaps of this group.
- Check the Share the Esri default basemaps to this group when you click Save check box. Refer to ArcGIS Online: Basemap gallery for more information.
- Click Save.
Edit all ArcGIS Online maps to use the blank basemap. The maps are loaded, and users have the option of selecting another basemap when required.
- ArcGIS Online: Choose basemap
- ArcGIS Blog: Using Basemap Transparency
- ArcGIS Ideas: Offer a simple blank basemap option for ArcGIS Online
- FAQ: Is there a blank basemap available in ArcGIS Online?