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I noticed that after downloading the California map from and putting the IMG file into my Garmin StreetPilot i5, the address search works inconsistently. For example, if I search for the intersection of Coleus Court and Fuchsia Lane in San Diego, California, it works great. However, if I search for 4376 Coleus Ct in San Diego, California, I come up empty. I already checked the address's point with JOSM and the addr:... fields are as follows:

  • country: US
  • housenumber: 4376
  • postcode: 92154
  • street: Coleus Ct

The list of streets is also quite incomplete when I search on the Garmin device compared to the streets available on the OSM website.

Is there anything I can do to improve the address search?

In case it matters, it seems that the maps are generated using mkgmap, which should support address searching (see

asked 16 Aug '14, 21:47

Zian's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

There are numerous things that can go wrong in the process of turning OSM data in to a useable Garmin map. For example one thing you should check with the operators of is if they are actually using a current version of mkgmap and have enabled the address search feature.

Alternatively use one of the other Garmin map providers or grab yourself a current extract for California and produce the map yourself.

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answered 17 Aug '14, 14:42

SimonPoole's gravatar image

SimonPoole ♦
accept rate: 18%

edited 17 Aug '14, 14:51

aseerel4c26's gravatar image

aseerel4c26 ♦

Mkgmap relies heavily on administrative boundaries, if you search for this street within the city of San Diego and the boundary is not complete or missing in OSM, searching fails (or if addr:city=San Diego is missing here). It might help to leave the city field empty in the search.

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answered 18 Aug '14, 07:37

ligfietser's gravatar image

accept rate: 11%

edited 18 Aug '14, 07:41

In the past the alternativaslibres maps used is_in tags for building the search index.

(18 Aug '14, 09:47) SK53 ♦

You should really direct this question to Carlos Davila, the owner of I believe the site has a forum or contact email, but these may be restricted to people contributing to the development and hosting of the files.

In the past the Garmin maps have been heavily optimised for usage by car drivers and for routing. For instance Spanish roads are shown in the same colours as the standard signage: no trivial matter as each regional government has control over much of the road network. The tiles tend to be large so as to avoid problems with routing across several tiles. In order to achieve large enough tiles some data has to be excluded, which I suspect include addresses.

If address search is an important requirement then follow SimonPoole's advice and use another provider.

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answered 17 Aug '14, 19:25

SK53's gravatar image

SK53 ♦
accept rate: 22%

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question asked: 16 Aug '14, 21:47

question was seen: 16,114 times

last updated: 18 Aug '14, 09:47

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