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I would like to make a map area for Indianapolis, Indiana, United States. I have two problems: one is that when I zoom out sufficiently far, the ID in-browser editor will no longer let me edit. Do I have to zoom in and then meticulously draw very small lines to connect the dots to make the area of this city?

Secondly, if you view another map of the city (e.g. WikiMapia's), you will see that Indianapolis mostly shares boundaries with Marion County and those are mostly straight lines, but not quite: to the northeast is Lawrence and the east is Cumberland, furthermore in the southeast is Beech Grove, Southport to the south, and Speedway to the west. These last three are all enclaves within Indianapolis. How do I exclude them?

asked 14 Aug '14, 07:11

Justin_-koavf-'s gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

edited 15 Aug '14, 14:08

stephan75's gravatar image


First of all, I really recommend to use the offline editor JOSM when you want to edit long boundary lines and the boundary relations that describe an administrative boundary via one or more single boundary ways.

And secondly it seems that we do not have a boundary that spans all around the city of Indianapolis like I am used from cities in europe, see openmapsurfer.

Or are these giant squares the real administrative boundary for each county including the city of Indianapolis??

If those boundaries are complete inside OSM, then try and choose the wanted boundary from the tree menu on the left screen side.

If there some enclaves are missing, tell us in detail, and we will try to include those in OSM data.

permanent link

answered 15 Aug '14, 14:07

stephan75's gravatar image

accept rate: 6%

edited 05 Jul '17, 08:13

Frederik%20Ramm's gravatar image

Frederik Ramm ♦

I'm not sure that I understand your question.

The U.S. has 50 states and those are each divided into counties (parishes in Louisiana, census districts in Alaska). Indiana has 92. Marion County and Indianapolis merged in 1969 but there were some bits left out of that merger, which I mention above. The county is not identical to the city but many of the borders of the county are the same as the borders of the city. Cumberland and Lawrence are not enclaves but Beech Grove, Southport, and Speedway are. (Clermont--which is listed on the link you show--is not independent but an included city).

(15 Aug '14, 16:51) Justin_-koavf-

(By the way, I found Indiana/Counties in the OSM wiki ... outdated and uncomplete?)

Ok, then we have the "bigger" boundary of Marion county, Indiana

and then Beech Grove, Speedway and Southport as areas that should be excluded.

Then have a look at Relation:boundary in the OSM wiki how these three areas should be excluded from Marion County. But If you are not familiar with editing boundary relations in the relation editor of JOSM editor (not so easy), then I recommend that another mapper from US should verify and complete this task.

(15 Aug '14, 17:37) stephan75

Beech Grove, Speedway, and Southport are part of Marion County. They are not part of Indianapolis. (The same is true for Lawrence but that is easier, as its eastern boundary is the same as the county's boundary.) Additionally, Cumberland is not a part of Indianapolis but Cumberland also overlaps two separate counties.

(15 Aug '14, 17:46) Justin_-koavf-

This is what I mean. Does that help?

(15 Aug '14, 18:06) Justin_-koavf-

That's as clear as mud to me :) From what I do understand, I think you may need to use multi-polygons in the relation to describe the boundaries, where a few of the inner polygons are not included in the larger boundary. There is a good help page on multi-polygons

permanent link

answered 15 Aug '14, 17:45

nevw's gravatar image

accept rate: 9%

edited 15 Aug '14, 17:51


This is what I mean. Does that help?

(15 Aug '14, 18:06) Justin_-koavf-

relations have inner and outer borders for this purpose. See the link of stephan75 Just like him, I recommend that you use JOSM to edit the boundary.

(15 Aug '14, 18:37) escada

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question asked: 14 Aug '14, 07:11

question was seen: 5,350 times

last updated: 05 Jul '17, 08:13

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