Automated Variable Visual Offset Tool

04-03-2014 03:23 PM
Status: Open
Occasional Contributor III
This idea was originally posted by JefS here:

When mapping utilities it is difficult to comprehensively show the lines at different scales.  This is especially true of electric/cable utilities where an underground bank of conduits may contain many lines inches apart or overhead power lines are inches to feet apart running from pole to pole.  It would be great if there were a tool to spread lines apart at different zoom intervals while keeping their end vertices connected to the manhole/junction box they tie in to.

For overhead electrical transmission double circuits, this would display the (2) lines at a visual separation appropriate to the zoom scale factor. Each leg or circuit needs to have its own editable attribute data (circuit name, etc.).

The user would need to input the real world offset (zoom 1:1), for example a 10' offset from the power pole centers.

The display offset would use a formula similar to:

  Offset display = [offset 1:1] + [(zoom)*(0.00224)]

  Where zoom is the current zoom scale factor (e.g. 20,000, etc.)
  Where 0.00224 is an editable constant (an offset multiplier) set for that particular feature (or layer, or display style)

This particular number (0.00224) results in a displayed offset at 1:1,000 of 12' and a displayed offset at 1:30,000 of 75'

The offset would recalculate with each change in zoom.

As the user draws the feature, he/she would snap to pole centers. A positive or negative (or a left/right “flow direction” offset) offset would apply.

Thank you.