Layer Types

Understand the different types of data layers in UrbanFootprint.

UrbanFootprint represents spatial data via layers. All layers that have been loaded to a project or created within it are viewable via the Layers list, and available to all users with access to the project. The different types of layers are described below.

Project Area

The Project Area layer depicts the boundary of your project area. The Project Area layer is generated upon project creation and cannot be removed.

Base Canvas

The Base Canvas depicts existing development in terms of land use types and attributes. UrbanFootprint automatically generates the Base Canvas upon project creation. The Base Canvas layer is identical for all scenarios within a project, and cannot be removed.

Context Area

If a context area is defined, the Context Area layer depicts its boundary. The Context Area layer is generated upon project creation and cannot be removed.

Context Area Land Use

If a context area is defined, the Context Area Land Use layer depicts existing development in terms of land use types and attributes. They layer contains the same attributes as the Base Canvas, but cannot be edited. The Context Area Land Use layer is generated upon project creation and can be removed from the Layers list. It is available through the Layer Manager.

Scenario Layers

A scenario layer is automatically generated upon the creation of a new scenario. Named "Scenario Canvas," this is the layer upon which you paint scenarios. The Scenario Canvas entry in the Layers list always represents the active scenario, so you will not see different scenarios represented as separate layers. To view or work on another scenario, click a scenario tab at the top of the screen to activate it.

Reference Data Layers

Reference data layers refer to those added from the Layer Manager. There is no limit to the number of reference data layers that can be added to a project. Reference data can be used on their own for data exploration and mapmaking, and used as criteria for scenario development either as constraints, or through the use of filters. Reference data layers can be removed and re-added using the Layer Manager.

User-Uploaded Data Layers

Spatial data in GeoJSON, GeoPackage, or zipped shapefile format can be uploaded into a project. Once loaded, these layers become available to all users in your organization with access to the project. Layers are limited to 100 MB in size. User-uploaded layers cannot be recovered if deleted.

Filtered Layers

Filtered layers are created as selections of other layers. Filtered layers created as selections of the Base Canvas or a scenario layer are "dynamic" in that any changes made to the Base Canvas or scenarios are reflected in the filtered layers. Filtered layers created from reference data layers or analysis output layers are static, and can be used just like reference data layers.

Buffered Layers

Buffered layers are created as buffered areas around features in other layers, as specified through the Filter tab. Buffered layers contain a single geometry to cover all buffer areas, and do not contain attributes.

Analysis Output Layers

Spatial analysis module outputs are represented as analysis output layers. They appear once analysis modules are run and completed. Some analysis modules, such as the walk and transit access modules, produce multiple layers. Output layers persist even if a module run is out of date. Analyze and Report modes alert you to the status of each module.

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