Color Coded Layer (Business Analyst)

Available with Business Analyst license.


Creates a multigeography-level, scale-dependent choropleth layer from a variable describing a business, demographic, consumer, or landscape characteristic.


Color-coded layer


  • Map appearance will vary based on the classification method employed. Detailed explanations of each are contained in the parameter syntax documentation.

  • The default number of classification fields is 5. This can be changed within the Number of Classes parameter. Typically, the number of breaks ranges from 3 to 7.

  • The geography level displayed will automatically adjust to the optimal geography level as map scale changes.

  • You can specify three classes for a field whose values range from 0 to 300; the application will create three classes with ranges of 0–100, 101–200, and 201–300.

  • The Geometric Interval method uses an algorithm that creates class breaks by minimizing the sum of squares of the number of elements in each class. This ensures that each class range has approximately the same number of values with each class and that the change between intervals is consistent.

  • Natural breaks are divided into classes whose boundaries are set where there are relatively big differences in the data values.

  • Quantile assigns the same number of data values to each class. There are no empty classes or classes with too few or too many values.

  • Business Analyst Data, used in summarizations and reports, is specified through the geoprocessing Data Source environment setting.

Syntax, out_layer_name, classification_method, number_of_classes)
ParameterExplanationData Type

Select one variable to display as a color-coded map.


The name of the color-coded layer that will be added to the map.


The method that will be used to calculate the class breaks.

  • NATURAL_BREAKSNatural breaks classes are based on natural groupings inherent in the data. Class breaks are identified that best group similar values and that maximize the differences between classes. This is the default.
  • QUANTILEEach class contains an equal number of features. A quantile classification is well suited to linearly distributed data.
  • EQUAL_INTERVALDivides the range of attribute values into equal-sized subranges. This allows you to specify the number of intervals, and ArcGIS Pro will automatically determine the class breaks based on the value range.
  • GEOMETRIC_INTERVALCreates class breaks based on class intervals that have a geometric series. The geometric coefficient in this classifier can change once (to its inverse) to optimize the class ranges.

The number of data classification breaks that appear on the map. The default value is 5.


Derived Output

NameExplanationData Type

A container for the output layer.

Group Layer

Code sample

ColorCodedLayer example (Python window)

The following Python window script demonstrates how to use the ColorCodedLayer tool.

import arcpy
arcpy.env.baDataSource = "ONLINE;US;""networth.mednw_cy", "CCL_NetWorth", "NATURAL_BREAKS", 5)
ColorCodedLayer with Statistical Data Collection variable example (Python window)

The following Python window script demonstrates how to use the ColorCodedLayer tool with Statistical Data Collection variables.

import arcpy
arcpy.env.baDataSource = "USA_ESRI_2018""c:\users\<User ID>\documents\arcgis\projects\my_project\bayarea_proprietarydata.sdcx/sales_s01_sales", "sales_s01_sales Layer", "NATURAL_BREAKS", 5)

Licensing information

  • Basic: Requires Business Analyst
  • Standard: Requires Business Analyst
  • Advanced: Requires Business Analyst

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