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Public-images-osm logo.svg population
Memphis highway sign IMG 0670.JPG
Indicates a rough number of citizens in a given place. Show/edit corresponding data item.
Group: places
Used on these elements
may be used on nodesshould not be used on waysmay be used on areas (and multipolygon relations)may be used on relations
Useful combination
See also
Status: approvedPage for proposal

The population=<number> key can be used to indicate a rough number of citizens in a given place.

Whenever possible, it is recommended to also add the key source:population=* to the same object, having as its value the name of the institution that counted the population and the year when the population was counted. This way other people can easily verify and update these values. Also, for a more accurate designation of the population counting date, you can add a key population:date=* in [W] ISO 8601 format.

The population figure should be a stable number if possible. Typically, it includes residents but excludes non-residents who may be visiting the place for business or leisure. It should not reflect a temporary event, such as a weather-related evacuation.


Software support

Some renderers use this key to show more populated cities more prominently, such as by labeling them with larger text, displaying them at lower zoom levels, or prioritizing them over nearby less populated places. [1] Search engines can also use this key to rank search results.


  • wikidata=* allows data consumers to look up the population on Wikidata. The linked item may contain one or more population (P1082) statements, including historical population statements. Data consumers should use the statement with preferred rank or the statement that has the most recent point in time (P585) qualifier.