Problem with XY to Line

Discussion created by gismaxwell on Jan 26, 2014
Latest reply on Jan 27, 2014 by gismaxwell
I need to calculate distances between 2 different sets of lat/lon coordinates (one representing zip code centroids, the other representing hospitals).  I created a small test file with 24 records and am trying to use the "XY to Line" tool to get the distances.  For some reason the lines that it outputs are nonsensical.   Clearly I'm doing something wrong with GCS and projection, but I don't know what.

I created the zip codes centroids points from Tiger Line polygons, which use GCS North American 1983.   I created the hospital points by geocoding addresses, and they seem to display perfectly when I set them to the same GCS.   

Can anyone tell me what I'm doing wrong?  Maybe I need to get out of that GCS and into a projected system right off the bat??

Or is there any easier way to get these distances?   I tried creating a Point Distance table but had other problems with that, and that is a less direct solution anyway because I would then have to somehow lookup values in that table to get distances for my already paired sets of coordinates.