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July 20th 2024 - 03:37
July 17th, 2008
July 17th, 2008

Fun With Street Maps

Now that the new mapping interface is running well, it seems many of my customers want street level data - only problem is that that data is very expensive (roughly $25,000.00 per year!!!) so I needed to find an alternative...

Now at first this may sound like far too much work - and that is why I never tried it until now, but it is much easier then I thought. Using a combination of paper maps, Yahoo, Google, and various other means to get correct street names I have started manually tracing the streets and digitizing them. In just over 2 days I have completed the entire lower Sunshine Coast and I can probably finish the project in a couple more days. Add a cadre of locals to verify the data and provide corrections and the data is there.

Basically the process involves using the satellite data from Google Earth to confirm roads on local regional district maps and tracing the roads using various drawing tools into KML. I can then convert that into shape files with a small freeware application I found and hey-presto street level data that I can control and manipulate = very happy customers.

The really surprising thing is the amount of incorrect data in the existing on-lime mapping data. First the data in Google Earth and Google Maps is completely different. For your own reference Google Maps is far more accurate then GE, around here anyway. But they both have streets that run across water, through homes, forests etc and these are not just new construction (which would make sense)

So, not only will I soon have complete street level data for my local area - it will be more up-to-date and accurate to boot!

Not bad for a weeks work while saving $25,000.00 and getting a more accurate end result.

Sechelt Street Map Example
Sechelt Street Map Example
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