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Alteryx designer Discussions

Find answers, ask questions, and share expertise about Alteryx Designer.

Calgary Spatial Joins

Alteryx Partner

Hi ,

i have recently been playing with Calgary spatial joins where by i have a Calgary file with UK postcodes where the spatial point has been indexed and then do a Calgary join on overlapping trade areas.


I am please to say this runs lightening quick when on a couple of trade areas but when i have over 100 the inability to deselect the spatial trade area (like in the spatial match process) results in the trade area being appended to every matching point.  This results in a massive data flow at the Calgary join.  I can remove it after the join with a select but it it possible to avoid this.  I guess I'm hoping for some form of select in the Calgary join.


Would be great to hear peoples thoughts on this.




Alteryx Certified Partner
Alteryx Certified Partner



I have tremendous empathy for you Ashley.  It looks like there are existing ideas asking for similar functionality.  Below are links to those ideas for you to cast your star/vote for.  I had a similar desire with the Spatial Match tool.  Even though you can de-select the universe spatial object, your temp drive still fills up and the spatial matching is slowed by the object's parachute effect on performance.  You might want to try my Spatial Match Macro with a non-calgary dataset.  The performance of the macro may surprise you and you might stop using Calgary when you see how fast the spatial matching can really run.  On the Alteryx gallery you'll find CReW Spatial Match Macro.


When you need a beast of a machine for performance, sometimes you need to upgrade RAM and Disk.  My friends and spatial gurus @andy_moncla & @Hollingsworth have used this CReW macro and can attest to the performance.  They also might want to speak to best practices that will include hardware configuration.


Calgary Existing Ideas to STAR:


While the concept of my CReW macro can be applied to the Calgary Join tool, there is added complexity due to the nature of the Calgary tool.  I could construct a more performance version, but the macro will deviate from the current user interaction of the Calgary Join tool.  You can reach out to me directly for a more thorough discussion.






Alteryx ACE & Top Community Contributor

Chaos reigns within. Repent, reflect and reboot. Order shall return.
ACE Emeritus
ACE Emeritus
I love Calgary spatial joins, especially with a boatload of RAM and solid state hard drives. If you using massive spatial data throughout your Alteryx workflows then I recommend at least 32 gig of RAM. Regarding the solid state hard drives, the pricing has never been better as the manufacturers have over produced. Here's a recent link regarding hard drives. We have found that gaming hardware is ideal for Alteryx.
Alteryx Partner

Thanks for the info - i tested the batch macro and in my case performed slower than just perfroming a spatial match ( around 10 miniutes) .  i think the 1.5k catchments with 1.6 million records may have been too much for the append.  The calgary join did complete in around a 1:30 which is really fast for the size of the data but from an efficency point of view appending a trade area to every postcode is very odd.  I have upvoted the ideas you suggested - i think they would make a great addition to the calgary database - particularly for spatial joins on trade areas.



Alteryx Partner

Ideally i dont want the spatial object in my workflow but hopefully the next iteration of calgary may help remove that.  Agreed about the RAM and SSD.   I am lucky to have 64GB RAM and a 512GB SSD drive