Blue Mountains

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Welcome to the page for the Blue Mountains (relation 6299568), a region in New South Wales bordering Sydney

Part of the Australia mapping project and the New South Wales mapping project, this page:

  • tracks what aspects of suburbs are essentially complete, and which are the most in need of attention
  • lists towns, localities, and places within the Blue Mountains Local Government Area.

Getting started with OpenStreetMap

Welcome and thanks for your interest in the mapping project. If you're new to OpenStreetMap, this section will provide some guidance in getting started with mapping.

  1. First you will want to create an account to start editing.
  2. Once you have done this, navigate to a place you would like to contribute, and then click the edit button.
  3. You are then recommended to complete a short tutorial. This will teach you the basics.
  4. From here, you can begin contributing - don't be too worried about making mistakes, as this is how you learn.
  5. A tip: You can make buildings have square corners by pressing letter Q on your keyboard. You can also make perfect circles using letter O.

The mapping editor that you generally use on is called iD. When you begin editing, this interface is what you will see.

On the left hand side is a column that contains details about objects. I suggest expanding the tabs "Fields" and "Tags".

  • OpenStreetMap classifies objects using a tagging system; for example, a simple house is tagged as building=house. This uses a key=value system, where the key describes the category and the value specifies the type of object. You don't have to worry about this too much at first, because iD has presets that automatically fill these details. For the time being, you should just be aware that this is how objects are identified under the hood. You can click any object in the editor to find some examples; this is a good way of learning. Otherwise, Australian Tagging Guidelines has a lot of info about how you can tag objects.

On the right hand side are the editor settings.

  • Mostly, you will want to look at Background settings (shortcut B). In the Blue Mountains, we are blessed to have excellent quality resources provided to us by the NSW Government. The DCS NSW Imagery is the default aerial photography for NSW; typically, it was taken in 2018. You can also switch to the DCS NSW Base Map at the bottom of the list; this is a great resource that shows lot boundaries, street numbers, etc.

Goals and priorities

The immediate goal is to get all suburbs to A+ (see tier list with criteria below).

In the Blue Mountains, the main priority is tracing buildings and assigning them addresses. It is tedious work but it is important for providing navigational information, as well as increasing the confidence of map users. If you see objects (such as streets) that are out of alignment with the DCS NSW Imagery, feel free to correct those or improve their accuracy.

Adding businesses is another useful task.

One important goal is to convince the BMCC to give us permission to use their cadastral map, a web preview of which can be viewed here. An email was sent to BMCC but no reply received so far.

Engaging with the mapping community

Currently, the best way of getting help is through the Discord messaging app, which is the most active community at the moment. I understand if you don't want to download another messaging program, but I do recommend it if you want to get the quickest help. You can join us over at Once you have done that, under the post "Server Rules", click the Australian flag. This will add you to the #oceania team (down the list on the left-hand panel), which is where we hang out.

Alternatives to the Discord server are Slack and Telegram, amongst others, although as far as I know, most people in the Blue Mountains aren't active on there. And of course, you can always directly message

More data sources

Valuable data sources that you are free to use include the DCS NSW Floods 2021 imagery, which is available in the lower mountains from near Blaxland and below. Also, the Strava heatmap can be used to find popular trails. Contact 2hu4u for more information about using these sources.

Indigenous heritage multilingual support

You can add the traditional names for objects or places. This follows the 3-letter code convention in ISO639-3. For Gundungurra, use name:xrd=* and for Dharug, use name:xdk=*. For example, The Gully in Katoomba can be tagged with its Gundungurra name, name:xrd=Garguree.

Last major update of this page: October 2020 (in progress)

Note that a lot of obsolete information has been removed from the old version.

After a long period of little attention, the Blue Mountains area is being revived in OSM from 2020 onwards. On the front line are 2hu4u and John Bek who currently are mostly active in the mid- and upper-Blue Mountains. In a recent collaborative effort, 2hu4u is mostly working on land use, buildings, infrastructure and tidying residential/forest bounds whilst John Bek has been tracing buildings, adding addresses and other residential features. Recent additions to the crew are jt15s (working on Blackheath), amongst others. ScottWalkerAU and ortho_is_hot have been working on bus stop imports. Some of this effort is being co-ordinated on the OSM World Discord server in the text channel #oceania.

Recent news and milestones

All houses, and pretty much all buildings on south side of GWH are complete (11 December 2021)

Upcoming focus suburbs for building completion:

  • Faulconbridge


All schools now have buildings (23 July 2021)


All buildings on westbound left side of GWH have been added west of Faulconbridge (inclusive) (July 2021)


All major power lines and substations have been completed in the Blue Mountains, including:

  • 132 kV power lines (Endeavour Energy)
  • 66 kV power lines (Endeavour Energy)
  • 66 kV power lines (Sydney Trains)
  • Zone/Transmission substations (Endeavour Energy)
  • Traction substations and section huts (Sydney Trains)


Latest suburbs to have building outlines completed:

  • Faulconbridge (27 April 2022)
  • Blackheath (2 February 2022)
  • Warrimoo (2 January 2022)
  • Glenbrook (31 December 2021)
  • Sun Valley (12 December 2021)
  • Hawkesbury Heights (26 July 2021)
  • Valley Heights (25 July 2021)
  • Lapstone (12 July 2021)


Major updates in progress (April 2022): Blaxland, Faulconbridge

Imports news

Relevant imports for this area that may be coming soon:

  • Microsoft building outlines (auto-traced from Bing - not quite as good as hand tracing but provide good starting point hand tracing from DCS NSW aerial imagery is far superior for now)
  • TfNSW Bus stops (addition is imminent so don't bother manually adding them for now - instead request them in the linked article)
    • Completed for Mt Victoria, Blackheath, Medlow Bath, Katoomba, Leura, Wentworth Falls, Bullaburra and Lawson
  • DCS addresses (import stalled because of license misunderstanding but people are still working on it)

Encompassing all suburbs, the following projects require attention:

  • Realignment of Great Western Highway and Main Western Railway to DCS NSW imagery (mostly finished from Katoomba to Hazelbrook)
  • Footpaths (finished in Leura and Katoomba)
  • Street lamps along GWH (finished in Leura, mostly finished in Lawson and Katoomba)
  • Residential and forest bounds require tidying (finished from Medlow Bath to Lawson)
  • Railway corridor area, access roads, fences and gates (Tip: DCS NSW Base map displays them for easy finding) (Finished in Leura)
  • Covered reservoirs (colloquially known as, but not to be confused with "water towers" - all of them have been added in Blue Mountains) and Sydney Water pumping stations
  • Rooftop solar installations (finished to the extent of 2018 imagery in Leura and Bullaburra)
  • 11 kV power lines (finished in Leura)
  • Telstra/NBN Co pillars and nodes (finished in Leura)

Current priority projects for most suburbs are:

  • Building outlines
  • Realigning roads

Low level completion but high importance towns (top priority):

  • Katoomba
  • Hazelbrook
  • Springwood/Winmalee
  • Blaxland

Small unfinished towns that could be easily completed:

  • Warrimoo
  • Valley Heights
  • Hawkesbury Heights
  • Sun Valley
  • Clarence

At a glance (tier list)

Map data

Map completion (criteria assessed on building outlines, features, land use and road alignment)
Tier Criteria Towns Priority
SS All requirements of S but with multiple categories of micromapping complete Ongoing maintenance (construction, businesses)
S All buildings mapped, addresses added, land use cleaned.

Extensive completion of one category of micromapping details (such as distribution power lines, street lamps, hydrants, street-level imagery)

Leura Fire hydrants and street lights
A All buildings mapped, addresses added, land use cleaned.

Note: if area is rural or semi-rural and residential land use is not appropriate, consider adding private driveways.

Wentworth Falls, Katoomba, Bullaburra, Linden, Medlow Bath,

Lawson, Woodford, Lapstone, Hawkesbury Heights, Valley Heights, Sun Valley, Glenbrook, Bell, Warrimoo, Mount Victoria, Hazelbrook

Micromapping to Leura's standard, paths in nature reserves, residential bounds
B All buildings mapped but addresses or land use not complete Megalong Valley, Mt Irvine, Blackheath, Faulconbridge Addresses
C Good start on buildings and land use, roads all aligned Springwood, Blaxland Finish buildings, tidy land use
D Most or all roads to good standard, important POIs mapped, some buildings added Mount Riverview, Winmalee Buildings, residential bounds
E Residential bounds/land use and some buildings added, many streets require realigning Yellow Rock Buildings, residential bounds, street alignment
F Minimal completion, streets exist but have not been touched yet Berambing All the above
N/A Rural/farmland (does not require residential landuse) Kanimbla, Greater Hartley area, Clarence, Mount Wilson, Mount Tomah Buildings, land use and tracks

Street-level Imagery

Note that as of Feb 2022, only Mapillary supports spherical imagery.

Mapillary/Kartaview/Both Coverage
Description Spherical Flat
Complete None Great Western Highway
Extensive None Hawkesbury Road, Main Western Railway
Decent Great Western Highway Leura, Shipley
OK Leura Blackheath, Blaxland
Minimal Lawson, Faulconbridge, Mount Victoria, Shipley, Katoomba Katoomba, Mount Riverview, Blaxland
None Everything else Everything else


For each suburb (in some cases they have been grouped), this attempts to list what has been "done" in each suburb, along with things to check out, fill in or correct.

Suburbs are ordered from east to west along the main line, with the Bells Line suburbs at the bottom.


Buildings complete, roads realigned.

Requires addresses


Active contributors:


  • All buildings traced, and addressed.
  • Focusing on tracing residential solar, swimming pools, and footpaths.

Blaxland (including Mount Riverview)

Active contributors:

2hu4u Jack465

Houses on south side traced. Tracing of houses on the north side of the highway has begun. All north side houses up to Mitchells Pass have been traced to DCS Imagery, and some work has been done in Mount Riverview.

Current Focus:

  • Re adjust already traced houses to Bing Imagery
  • Finish tracing the north side of the highway & Mt Riverview.


Active contributors:

2hu4u Jack465

All houses traced and addressed.

Valley Heights (including Sun Valley)

  • Buildings and addresses finished in Valley Heights.
  • Buildings and addresses finished in Sun Valley.

Winmalee (including Hawkesbury Heights and Yellow Rock)

Active Contributors:



  • Hawkesbury Heights - buildings, addresses and roads finished
  • Winmalee has many poorly-traced houses that need redoing (possibly a reversion). Poorly-traced buildings reverted.


Active contributors:


Houses on south side traced


Active contributors:


Houses completion level: 75%


  • Buildings, roads, addresses and land use finished.
  • Distribution power lines


Active contributors:

2hu4u John Bek Cimera2

  • Buildings, addresses and roads complete
  • Land use still needs tidying on south side


Active contributors:


Buildings and roads finished. Addressing has been finished (2022-04-08)

Priority for work:

  • Addresses
  • Some wetlands on north side need separating from forest


  • Industrial area businesses require adding


Active contributors:

2hu4u John Bek

Affectively 100% completion of roads and footpaths. All buildings now traced and addresses added.

Still to finish:

  • Street lamps
  • Power poles
  • Fire hydrants

Wentworth Falls (including Kings Tableland)

Active contributors:

2hu4u John Bek

  • Effectively 100% completion and updating of roads, buildings outlines and addresses
  • Some residential bounds tidying in in progress
  • Addresses with housenumbers only require street


Active contributors:


  • Comprehensively mapped in almost all aspects
  • Effectively 100% completion and updating of roads, buildings outlines, power lines, addresses, footpaths, land use, major trails, residential rooftop solar
  • Still to finish:
    • Street lamps on minor roads, pole numbers (especially in North Leura)
    • Fire hydrants (especially in North Leura)
    • Trees in public spaces
    • Mapillary coverage
    • 3D building info (roof shapes and levels)
    • Minor waterways Pretty much all waterways done

Katoomba (including North Katoomba and Yosemite)

Active contributors:

2hu4u John Bek

  • Effectively 100% completion and updating of roads, buildings outlines, footpaths, land use
  • Priority for work:
  • Full addresses (housenumbers are finished) - use osmose to detect issues

Medlow Bath

Houses, addresses and roads complete

Blackheath (including Shipley)

Active contributors:


All buildings mapped, all still need addresses

Megalong, Kanimbla and Hartley

Active contributors:


Current tasks are tracing forest/scrub bounds, ponds, adding properties and private driveways and property access. When applicable, water tanks are also added. Challenges include filling gaps with natural=grassland etc.

Mount Victoria

Houses complete, addresses complete


Mount Tomah

Mount Irvine

All buildings effectively complete

Mount Wilson


All buildings effectively complete

Blue Mountains National Park

DCS NSW Topographic map is very useful for identifying peaks and mountains. Some trails can easily be traced when in proximity to high voltage transmission lines, as most towers require access via an unmaintained track/road or unpaved service road.

Blue Mountains Places