Select by Location - Allow for where clause on source layer

03-27-2013 12:17 PM
Status: Under Consideration
Labels (1)
New Contributor III

it would be nice to be able to specify some additional criteria on a source layer when doing a selection. 

For Instance, 

Select features from: X which intersect source Layer: Y

but only where source layer Y; field = abc

Currently if you want to do this you would need to set a definition query on the source layer prior to doing the selection.

Alternatively, you could perform a select by attribute and then a select by location using only the selected records from the source layer.
Yes, This is also possible through a definition query as well however if doing a few diiferent slections it would be beneficial to include this in the Select by Location dialog as well

Looking at the docs, SQL reference for query expressions used in ArcGIS—ArcGIS Pro | ArcGIS Desktop 

It looks like you can write a subquery (query within a query). Is that what you're looking for, or is that something else?


Please add the ability to add an expression (where clause) to Select By Location.  This would speed up the usability of the interface for selecting features by location.

The work-around is to perform a Select By Attributes first and then switch back to the Select By Location dialog and then select the output from Select By Attributes to use as the filter.  Yes that works, but not a good interface design to make the user switch back and forth between dialogs.  Using two dialogs is also not intuitive to new users because, I think most users assume, an expression button would be made available to them as that would be a good design.

For example, assume I have a dataset called my_data and I want to select all of the records which exist in the state of California.  I can either set a Definition Query in the properties of my States Layer or run the Select By Attributes query.  Both of those options require me to leave the Select By Location dialog.  If I have the ability to set a where clause expression in Select By Location then I never have to leave the dialog and I can perform my entire task within the tool.

Please see my attached drawing as an example for adding this functionality to the Select By Location tool in Arcgis Pro.


A similar idea was proposed in 2013:


Like @TimJohnston5  said, this would be an extremely convenient function and one that I think would be relatively easy to add to the Select by Location query window in Pro. Often I either have to create a definition query or make a layer from selected features before running a Select by Location query, but having an attribute/location selector combined in one tool would save time and keep the Contents pane cleaner.

Status changed to: Under Consideration

Thank you for this idea, we will keep it under consideration for a future release.