Use Ortelius to Show a Buffer Around Map Features

Buffers are new polygons that represent an area of specified distance around another object. Buffers can help map readers visualize what other features are near or far from another feature. For example, you can create a 1-mile buffer around a road, or a 20-kilometer buffer around a river.

In Ortelius, Buffers can be quickly created around paths or tracks. Buffers can also be created around point symbol features, yielding a circular path of the buffer radius. Select the feature to be buffered. Choose Edit > Buffer from the main menu. A dialog appears. Enter the distance for the buffer (note that buffer distance is related to the scale of the drawing) and click OK. Buffer distance units will be displayed based on the View > Display Units setting in the main menu (points, page units, or map units). A new buffer polygon is created as a new map feature added to the currently active layer.

Buffers Can Be Styled Like Other Objects


To change a buffer polygon’s appearance, select it and choose a new fill style from the Symbols Palette. Alternatively, use the Colors Palette to drag-and-drop a color onto the buffer area. Semi-transparent fill styles without outline strokes work best for stylizing buffers. You can also create and layer multiple buffers by selecting the path or track again and entering a new buffer distance.