Create a parcel using a traverse

In the parcel fabric, a parcel can be created by entering dimensions for a closed loop traverse. After the traverse has been entered, the parcel is built to create the parcel polygon and parcel points.

A parcel traverse is the primary method for entering parcel dimensions from a record of survey. In a parcel traverse, dimensions for each parcel boundary are entered in sequence to form a closed loop.

Enter a closed loop parcel traverse

A parcel traverse is entered using the Traverse tool Traverse located in the Tools gallery on the Parcels ribbon. The Traverse tool creates parcel boundary lines in the chosen parcel lines feature layer. Since parcel fabric line layers are COGO-enabled, the tool populates the line's COGO attribute fields with the entered dimensions.


The COGO Type field of a parcel fabric line feature class (parcel type line or connection line) is automatically set to Entered when COGO dimensions are populated by entering a traverse.

To enter a parcel traverse, follow these steps:

  1. If you're working in an enterprise environment, create or switch to a version for the new edit.

    Switching to and creating versions are done using commands on the Versioning ribbon. To display the Versioning ribbon, click List By Data Source List By Data Source in the Contents pane and select the database connection. Alternatively right-click the database connection to switch to a version.

  2. Set the active record in the map for the new parcel.

    The active record should be the legal record that defined the parcel. If the record does not exist, create a parcel record.

  3. To apply a ground to grid correction to your traverse dimensions, calculate and turn on a ground to grid correction for the map.
  4. Click Traverse Traverse located in the Tools gallery on the Parcels ribbon to open the Traverse tool in the Modify Features pane.
  5. Click the Layer drop-down box and choose the parcel line feature layer in which to enter the traverse.
  6. If necessary, click the template drop-down list next to the Direction field and choose a feature template for your lines.

    The default feature template is used if no other feature template exists.

  7. Click Set Start Location and click a starting point on the map to set a start location for your parcel traverse.

    You can click anywhere in the map extent as the start location for your parcel traverse. You can also click to snap on existing points or control points if the survey record indicates that the parcel point coincides with the control point. Once the parcel is built, it can be moved and aligned with surrounding parcels.

    Click Show Only Active Show Only Active in the Records group on the Parcels ribbon to only display parcel features associated to the active record. In this way, you can display only the traverse lines and other parcel features associated to the active record.

  8. Click in the Direction field to begin entering your traverse dimensions.

    A closed loop parcel traverse will close back onto the start location if the start point and end point of the traverse are within a misclose tolerance. The misclose of a parcel traverse is the difference between the end point of the last line of the traverse and the start point of the traverse.

  9. To specify a misclose tolerance, click the traverse options button Menu and click Traverse Options. Type a misclose tolerance and click OK on the Traverse Options dialog box.

    If the end point of the traverse lies within the specified misclose tolerance of the start location, the two points are snapped together and the traverse is closed.

  10. If the start and end points of the parcel traverse do not lie within the specified traverse misclose, check Closed under the traverse grid to force closure and generate misclose information.

Build and align the parcel

Once you have entered a traverse of boundary lines, you need to build the parcel. Building the parcel will create the parcel polygon and parcel points.

When building parcels from lines, parcel seeds are used. A parcel seed is the initial state, or seed state, of a parcel. A parcel seed indicates to the build process that a parcel should be built from the lines enclosing the seed. A parcel seed is a minimized polygon feature and is stored in the parcel type polygon feature class. The parcel seed can be populated with parcel attributes, and these attributes will be transferred to the parcel polygon when it is built.

A parcel seed is not created for a closed loop of lines that are associated with different records. A closed loop of lines must all be associated with the same parcel record for a seed to be created.

Learn more about parcel seeds

To build and align a new parcel, follow these steps:

  1. With the traverse lines visible in the map extent, click the Create Seeds Create Parcel Seeds command on the Records ribbon to create a seed for your closed loop of lines.

    The Create Seeds command generates parcel seeds for closed loops lines in the map extent. Closed loops of lines must be associated with the same parcel record for a seed to be created. The parcel type of the seed is determined from the closed loop of parcel lines. The seed feature is created in the parcel polygon feature class of the parcel type.

    Parcel traverse with seed

  2. Optionally select the seed and click Attributes Attributes in the Selection group on the Parcels ribbon to add parcel attributes to the parcel seed.

    You can also add attributes to the parcel polygon once it's built.

  3. Click Build Active Build Parcels In The Active Record in the Construct group on the Parcels ribbon to build the parcel.

    Build active builds parcels that associated to the active record.

  4. If necessary, select the built parcel polygon, open the Attributes pane Attributes, and add attributes for fields such as Name, Stated Area, and Stated Area Unit.
  5. Use the Move Move and parcel alignment tools to align the new parcel with the surrounding parcel fabric.