Types of geometry analysis

You can perform many differnt types of geometry analyses with the ArcGIS APIs.

The operations are categorized into the following:

  1. Spatial relationship
  2. Geometric calculation
  3. Length and area
  4. Projection

Click on the tables below to learn how to execute each operation with ArcGIS APIs.

Spatial relationship

Spatial relationship operations determine the topological association between two geometries and return true or false.

Relation (yellow = true)
ContainsReturns true if one geometry contains another geometry.
The left geometry contains the top geometry.
DisjointReturns true if one geometry does not intersect another geometry.
The left geometry is disjoint from the top geometry.
IntersectsReturns true if one geometry intersects another geometry.
The left geometry intersects the top geometry.
OverlapsReturns true if one geometry overlaps another geometry. NOTE: Only valid for geometries of the same type or dimension.
The left geometry overlaps the top geometry.
TouchesReturns true if one geometry touches another geometry.
The left geometry touches the top geometry.
WithinReturns true if one geometry is fully within another geometry.
The left geometry is within the top geometry.
RelateReturns true if input geometries satisfy the specified DE-9IM spatial relation. You can provide any combination of the supported DE-9IM operations.

Geometric calculation

Geometric calculation operations evaluate one or more geometries and return a new geometry.

BoundaryReturns a polyline or polygon for the area of a geometry.
BufferReturns a polygon that surrounds a geometry at a specified distance.
ClipReturns a geometry where a target geometry and envelope intersect.
Convex HullReturns a polygon with the shortest perimeter that encloses one or more geometries.
CutReturns geometries where an input polyline crosses an existing geometry.
DensifyReturns a geometry that has intermediate points at a specified distance between existing vertices.
DifferenceReturns one or more geometries that are the result of the set theoretic difference between one geometry and another geometry.
ExtentReturns a rectangle geometry that encompasses the coordinates of an input geometry.
GeneralizeReturns a geometry where the vertices that contribute least to the shape of the input polygon or polyline are removed, while retaining the characteristics of the shape. The number of vertices removed depends on a given spatial deviation distance
IntersectReturns a geometry based on set theoretic intersection of the input geometries.
Nearest CoordinateReturns the coordinate of a geometry that is closest to a specified point.
Nearest VertexReturns the vertex of a geometry that is closest to a specified point.
OffsetReturns a geometry that is a constant distance from an input polyline or polygon.
ReshapeReturns a geometry that takes the shape of the reshaper input where the reshaper geometry intersects the input geometry.
SimplifyReturns a geometry that is topologically correct.
TrimReturns a geometry that intersects the input geometry and trim polyline.
UnionReturns a geometry based on the set theoretic union of the input geometries.

Length and area

Length and area measures calculate the length, distance, and area of one or more geometries.

AreaReturns the planar or geodesic area for a polygon.
DistanceReturns the planar or geodesic distance between two geometries.
LengthReturns the planar or geodesic length of a polyline.


A project operation projects one or more input geometries from one spatial reference to another.

ProjectReturns a projected geometry in the specified spatial reference.


API support

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