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You will learn: how to load data (CSV, GeoJSON and shapefiles) into ArcGIS Online for your apps.

With your ArcGIS account, you can upload different file formats (CSV, XLS, GPX, GeoJSON, shapefiles, etc) to ArcGIS Online and then use them in your apps. This process is called publishing a hosted feature layer and behind every feature layer is a REST service that supports spatial queries and editing operations.

You can import existing spatial files, including CSVs that denote the latitude and longitude of points, or use our World Geocoding Service to determine the location of addresses or points of interest during import of a normal table. Initially your layers are only accessible to you, but they can be shared more widely using the sharing permissions in ArcGIS for Developers and ArcGIS Online. This import process is a fast and easy way to turn static data into live services and build apps to display, filter and edit.

In this tutorial you will download and import datasets that were gathered from the Los Angeles GeoHub. They include Trailheads (CSV), Trails (GeoJSON), and a Parks and Open Space (Shapefile). The data will be stored in your own account in ArcGIS Online and can be used in other tutorials.


Import datasets to ArcGIS Online

  1. Download and unzip the three datasets. Do not unzip the Parks and Open file, as it contains a shapefile that you will import as is.

  2. Sign in to your ArcGIS account. If you don't already have one, sign-up for free.

  3. At the top right of the main menu, click the button to go to the ArcGIS for Developers dashboard.

  4. At the top of your dashboard you should see one row of buttons called ArcGIS for Developers and another row called ArcGIS Online. In the ArcGIS for Developers row click New Layer.

  5. You will now upload the Trailheads.csv data file. Either drag and drop the Trailheads.csv file into the box called Drop a file here or click the Select a file button and upload the Trailheads.csv file.

  6. You will now be prompted to configure the Trailheads dataset as a new layer using the Details, Location, Fields, and Settings menus. For now, you only need to edit the Details menu. Your new layer should already be called Trailheads. Give your new layer the tag LA Trailheads, because the tags field cannot be left blank.

  7. Repeat the above step for the other two datasets using the following table:

    File Title Tags
    Trails.geojson Trails LA Trails
    Parks and Open Parks and Open Space LA Parks
  8. In the ArcGIS Online row in your dashboard, click Manage Content. You will see a list of your new layers. Click on any of the new hosted feature layers and start browsing the following tabs:

    • Overview
    • Data
    • Visualization
    • Usage
    • Settings

Congratulations, you're done!

Your layers should look something like this: Trailheads, Trails, Parks and Open Space.


Find the URL

When examining one of your new hosted feature layer pages, find the Service URL link and identify the service endpoint. This is what applications use to access the data. It should look something like this:

Try pasting the URL in your browser to explore the data. Try the Query function at the bottom.

Learn more about the ArcGIS REST API with the query a feature layer tutorial.

Set the styles

When examining one of your new hosted feature layer pages, locate the Visualization button and try styling your layer with different symbols. When you are done, save the symbols. This will allow apps that load the layer to display your new defaults.

Learn more about styling layers in ArcGIS Online.