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Utility Network reference for editing

When you edit features in a utility network, snap settings and editing tools automatically apply connectivity rules and associations set for the network.

The following sections summarize how editing tools work when you edit a utility network. To learn more about connectivity rules and associations, see the following topics:

For a basic workflow to get started, see Edit a utility network.

View attributes and associated assets

In the Attributes pane, you can view utility network attributes and associated assets for a selected feature. In the tree view, associations appear below the selected feature and report the total number of associated subfeatures.

In the selection list, you can right-click the association, and zoom to the associated features. Associated features are organized by layer and can contain multiple items. When you click an association—for example, a containment—information is reported on the Associations tab.

To learn more, see View utility network associations.

Create network features

Feature templates, preset templates, and group templates and their builders create new features that conform to network rules and associations defined for a utility network as follows:

  • Component polyline network features created by group templates are modified based on junction and edge connectivity rules.
  • Component network features created by group or preset templates are interconnected to parent features based on containment and structural attachment associations.
  • When you create features using a group template, the rules defined for the primary network features take precedence.


Multipart features are not permitted in a utility network. When you click Finish Finish or another command that attempts to create a multipart feature, the message Multipart features cannot be created in a Utility Network Error appears in the current map.

Move network features

When you use Move Move to move a network feature, coincident features and features associated as container objects and structural attachments also move. For example, moving a duct bank also moves its contents, or moving a pole also moves a transformer attached to it.

Features that share a coincident endpoint, edge, or a vertex when midspan connections are permitted, are also edited. All coincident features move with the selected feature and linear features are stretched so that the visible feature topology remains contiguous.


Utility networks use network topology to maintain connectivity among features and do not participate in map topology. Network topology enables you to trace a network and identify connected features, determine flow characteristics of a commodity such as water or electricity based on feature attributes, and perform other analytic operations.

To learn more, see About network topology.

Split network features

When you use Split Split to split a utility network line feature, the resulting features are connected with a system junction feature at the location of the split. Asset types constrained by attribute domains are determined by the domain split policy defined for the utility network.

For example, container contents and associated attribute assignments are maintained based on the containment split policy defined for structure line feature classes.

To learn more, see Associations.

Junction and edge connections

Junction and edge connectivity rules define how a feature connects to a line or edge of a particular asset type or group.


When you add or move a network feature, snap settings automatically change to settings that conform to junction and edge connectivity rules. You can turn snapping off, but you cannot change the layers or features to which you are snapping.

Midspan connections

When you place a network feature on a network linear feature segment or cross it with another linear network feature, the polyline is modified based on the junction and edge connectivity rules. How the polyline is modified is listed in the following table.

Editing scenarioMidspan connection permittedMidspan connection not permitted

Point feature on a polyline feature

A vertex is added to the coincident polyline.

The segment is split, and the attributes and related records are copied to the new feature.

Polyline feature crossing a polyline feature

A vertex is added at each intersection and where an endpoint touches the polyline.

The segment is split, and the attributes and related records are copied to the new feature.

Utility network midspan connections