Aerial photography over Dortmund

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Aerial photography over Dortmund House numbers | News | Mapping Party | Test area 100%-walkway design for blind navigation | Lessons learned in the pilot project

For the city of Dortmund, the company Aerowest makes its own aerial photographs for OpenStreetMap available. The pilot project is to improve the map of Dortmund and surrounding area.

City of Dortmund

The city of Dortmund is in North Rhine-Westphalia, "Regierungsbezirk" Arnsberg. It covers an area of 280.3 kilometers ² and has about 584,000 inhabitants (2085 inhabitants per km ²) in 12 districts.

The company Aerowest supports OpenStreetMap as a free project. For the first time in Germany, a company available high-resolution aerial coverage.


The orthophotos were created in 2009 from Aerowest. The ground resolution is 5 cm. The city area amounts to approx. 280.3 kilometers ² ((border city of Dortmund).

The aerial photographs were using gdal and BeTA2007 correction file in WGS84 lat / long (EPSG: 4326) translated and are available on The location accuracy was significantly due to the use of the correction file is below one meter.

The aerial photographs may be used only to generate data for Openstreetmap. Any other use or dissemination is prohibited.


As a source tag should not be used the word 'Aerowest'. Other e.g. HiRes aerial imagery is no problem.

Workflow (JOSM)

The WMS server with the aerial photos are JOSM / Merkaartor contacted at the following URL:

They are built into JOSM:

  1. open in JOSM with the key <F-12> the Settings menu
  2. Click in the left bar on the icon with the coordinate grid (3. icon from top)
    check whether is selected under the "projection method", the point "Mercator" (if not: change + ok)
  3. Click the left bar on the icon "WMS"
    click on "Add"
    wearing a menu, an appropriate name, for example "Aerial photos from Dortmund"
    mark the URL in the box
    copy the shortcut <Strg-c> and add them to <Strg-v> under "WMS-URL" and click "OK"
  4. in the top pane, you now see an additional entry with "Aerial photographs from Dortmund 'and the URL
    click" OK "
  5. load the data
  6. Click on JOSM menu to "WMS" and choose from the list the new entry "Aerial photographs from Dortmund"

Now you can map the aerial.

In order for thehigh-resolution aerial photographs displayed:

  1. load the data in JOSM which you want to edit
  2. zoom in (about 20-30 m)
  3. until now load the aerial photographs
  4. if you zoom in even further, (5-10m), with the mouse on the layer "Aerial photos from Dortmund", right mouse button and change the resolution.

Please don't characterizes changes that you do of the aerial photographs.

As there are currently many Osmer while working on the data of Dortmund, it is recommended saving often (every 5 minutes or less). Way to avoid save conflict and resolve the trouble.

Workflow (Potlatch)

The processing of the online editor is also possible. Unfortunately, at the highest level, the resolution is not very accurate display. Use the url in the "Custom" box:!/!/!.png