You will learn: how to find and use spatial data that others have shared on the ArcGIS Platform.

Organizations all over the world use ArcGIS to create and manage their spatial data. Many of them share their work publicly through ArcGIS Open Data, the Living Atlas or ArcGIS Online. Because of this you can often find a relevant existing layer in the area you're studying if you take the time to search for it. Do note that it's up to you to evaluate the coverage, quality, recency, and accuracy of the third-party open content you find. In this lab, you'll practice searching for interesting data sets on ArcGIS Open Data.


Find a dataset on ArcGIS Open Data

  1. Go to ArcGIS Open Data and search for 'Rail' in 'Los Angeles'

  2. Select the result titled Metro Rail Lines Stops shared by lahub_admin.

  3. In the Attributes section, click on MetroLine and notice that individual lines are now colored differently on the map. A bar chart is displayed which compares the total number of stops on each line.

  4. The Data tab shows you the item's raw data in tabular form. The API Explorer tab is an interactive tool to help you create your own queries to filter the RESTful service.

Create a web map

  1. In the Overview tab, click Create Webmap to load this layer into the ArcGIS Online Map Viewer.

  2. Click Add > Browse Living Atlas Layers to search for other authoritative content contributed by a variety of sources.

Congratulations, you're done!

Your web map should look something like this.


Browse and search ArcGIS Online

ArcGIS Online hosts a vast number of datasets that might be available for use in applications. You can search and browse content with a wide variety of filters. Learn about the various options for searching and browsing content in the ArcGIS Online help.

Explore more Living Atlas Data

On the Living Atlas website you can search and browse the complete Living Atlas catalogue sorted into categories like basemaps, imagery, and demographics.

Find more datasets on ArcGIS Open Data

ArcGIS Open Data hosts official datasets from thousands of organizations. You can search and browse this content on the ArcGIS Open data website.