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OpenStreetMap has a lot of great data which I'd like to be able to use in my GIS program. How would I go about downloading the data in shapefile format or another common GIS data file format?

asked 12 Jul '10, 20:24

dankarran's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

A fair few of the points made in answers to this question are outdated and need revision (particularly with respect to Quantum GIS).

(12 Jun '13, 22:09) SK53 ♦


You can download prepared shapefiles of OpenStreetMap data from Cloudmade or Geofabrik, two companies providing specialist OSM-based services. Shape files for small areas can be extracted directly on the BBBike site, but please don't abuse this facility when suitable extracts are available elsewhere.

It's also possible to create PostGIS databases of OpenStreetMap data using either osm2pgsql or Osmosis, which will give you greater control over the types of features included, but is a more complicated procedure.

Some GIS are starting to provide native support for OpenStreetMap XML data, including ArcGIS and Quantum GIS, but these are at an early stage of development and may not work as reliably as importing shapefiles yet. At present (June 2012) the QGIS OSM plugin is no longer supported, and requires workarounds in order to use OSM Data (see answers to this question.

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answered 12 Jul '10, 20:40

Jonathan%20Bennett's gravatar image

Jonathan Ben...
accept rate: 18%

edited 12 Jun '13, 23:40

SK53's gravatar image

SK53 ♦

ESRI have an open source extension for ArcGIS that will read and edit OSM data.

More information: ArcGIS extension

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answered 12 Jul '10, 22:10

ChrisH's gravatar image

accept rate: 15%

You can also download OSM data straight into QGIS, either via the api or by opening .osm files. This guide is a little old, but you get the idea.

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answered 12 Jul '10, 22:06

IknowJoseph's gravatar image

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I've just been setting up more info on the QGIS plugin: For some reason it took me a while to find this:

(09 Sep '12, 04:35) Harry Wood
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answered 04 Sep '11, 15:56

Mayeul's gravatar image

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edited 04 Sep '11, 18:26

petschge's gravatar image


The GIS software OpenJUMP has a feature to import OSM data directly.

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answered 16 Nov '13, 19:23

stephan75's gravatar image

accept rate: 6%


You can try to use (software name removed) from (URL removed) to downlaod Openstreet Maps to disk and create ESRI world file.

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answered 12 Oct '13, 14:41

Mark_879's gravatar image

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edited 13 Oct '13, 11:50

Richard's gravatar image

Richard ♦


This will get you blocked from using the tile servers pretty quickly for breaking the usage policy. Don't do this.

(12 Oct '13, 14:48) Jonathan Ben...

But it says: You are free to copy, distribute, transmit and adapt our data, as long as you credit OpenStreetMap and its contributors. If you alter or build upon our data, you may distribute the result only under the same licence....

(12 Oct '13, 15:09) Mark_879

Downloading (ripping or scraping) tiles is not the same as using the data. The tile server is there to support people editing the map and is easily swamped by scraping tiles. You can freely download the data or parts of it; more info here:

(12 Oct '13, 15:23) ChrisH

As explains: "OpenStreetMap data is free for everyone to use. Our tile servers are not."

(13 Oct '13, 11:51) Richard ♦

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question asked: 12 Jul '10, 20:24

question was seen: 61,438 times

last updated: 16 Nov '13, 19:23

NOTICE: is no longer in use from 1st March 2024. Please use the OpenStreetMap Community Forum