Locked Multiple Layouts in ArcGIS Pro

04-03-2017 11:22 AM
Status: Open
Labels (1)
New Contributor II

In ArcView 3 (AV 3) users often created multiple layouts and disconnected the live link to each one.  The AV 3 help text below briefly explains what we could do in the program.

Add a view


To create a map for output containing geographic data you must first add a view to your layout. When you add the view you can choose to make it live linked. This causes any changes in the view to be reflected in the layout. If you decide not to live link your view, it will not change in the layout even if you make changes to the view.

Layouts were not especially powerful in AV 3, but users could create multiple static objects and print them as displayed. 

In ArcGIS Pro, multiple layouts are available for within a single Pro project and multiple layouts are associated with a specific Pro map within the Project.  In each layout, the user specifies the extent, layers displayed, cartographic elements, and more.  In each individual Pro layout, the user now refines/updates the associated map, before printing or exporting the layout.  If the map is modified later, the layout changes, too.

It would be very helpful to lock individual layouts to preserve user settings and parameters, without modifying the underlying map.

I strongly recommend that this feature should be submitted as a near term enhancement.  I, and others, once used this AV 3 feature often.


Look back at the answer from Ari Villafuerte on Mar 14, 2019

"Whenever I want a new map I start by importing a layout file and that locks the settings for each layout. Before doing so, create a layout file that you can re-use by clicking on "Share" --> Layout File.


Once you're ready to create a new map within your current project, click --> Insert --> New Layout ---> Import a layout file


Add all the layers needed and you will see that anything that you change on that layout will not be reflected on the others."

You will end up with layouts that are independent (not locked) in the same Pro project.


This does not solve my issue. By following those step it does add a layout independent to the other layouts. But it does this by creating a copy of the original map that is now also independent. This essentially creates different maps that live in the same project.

I need each layout to reference the same map, with the ability to customize the layers visibility on each layout. That way I'm only configuring the symbology and labeling on 1 map with different layouts for how to display that 1 map. Having independent maps in the same project would still require any configuration to be copied to each different independent map to keep them current.


I have a project location at which I need to display data from several map layers on different Layouts. I would like the simplicity of unchecking a map layer under the map frame it is located to render that layer invisible for just that map frame. This would allow me to leave all layers visible in the basemap while customizing the visible layers in each map frame/layout


I agree fully with the comment of MkePrice. We have exactly the same problem. In a project we continuously work in the map and produce successively layouts, which we present to our clients or business associates. Therefore it is necessary for us, that the layout does not change, while we work again in the map. Using workarounds costs time and can provoke mistakes.

We urgently appeal to implement a function according to this issue. Thank You!


not implemented as of Dec 2021. Let's see if this can happen in 2022, don't know how many more years I'll be using ArcGIS.  The layers properties like visibility should be saved with the Layout, not on the map object.  

QGIS, AutoCAD (by using Xref) can do this easily BTW. 


I just want to say I would also find this functionality very helpful (and in some cases essential).


I fully agree.

This forum seems  a bit dated.

Has there been a solution for this issue that I missed?