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Sequential Zip Codes of the Contiguous United States

2022: Day 2 (Lines)

Nov 2, 2022

Tool: ArcGIS Pro

Data: USA ZIP Codes Areas layer package from Esri


  1. Before honing in on the following workflow, I played around with a lot of different visualization methods to display zip codes. Playing around with the data is half the fun!

  2. Upon adding the ZIP code areas from the link above, I ran the Feature to Point tool to generate centroids of each of the ZIP code areas. I chose to have points "inside" their polygons.

  3. Then I created a new attribute field in the centroid layer called "FirstDigit" and used Calculate Geometry with the following equation: !ZIP_CODE![:1]. This pulls the first number from the zip code so I could color each line set by the starting digit.

  4. Then I took some liberty and deleting the centroids for Alaska, Hawaii, and misc. territories to make it easier to visualize. Sorry, guys.

  5. Then I ran the Points to Line tool. The Line Field was "FirstDigit" to group lines based on their starting number, and the Sort Field was the ZIP code.

  6. These new lines were symbolized using Graduated Colors with 10 classes. I also was sure to have "0XXXX" at the top of the symbol layer drawing because of how interesting it is across the country!

Featured: Esri's Instagram page featured this map!

Originally Shared:

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