Rapid Address Collection

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This page will outline some of the ways of collecting addresses as quickly as possible.


The quickest way of collecting address data is by importing it from from a external source. The import system may seem tedious to some users (this is to make sure wrong imports don't happen) but it is still much quicker than manually collecting addresses, and you are not limited by your physical location. When importing, be sure to follow the Import Guidelines.

Data Sources

Potential Data sources for imports include (please discuss more sources on the talk page):

  • Freely licensed data available on a local government's websites
  • A bundle of open licensed addresses such as openaddress.io

If you find open address data that you want to import, you can then continue to the import process.

Copyrighted Data

If you find address data available, but is licensed under a restrictive copyright license (AKA. it is not open data), then consider contacting your local government and ask them if publishing the data under an open license would be an option. You can tell them how public service for the people should embrace Open Data and publish its data.

If you know that address data won't be released (e.g. you live in the UK and Ordanace Survey holds a monopoly on map data), you can either petition, or continue to the only remaining option...

Rapid Address Collection via Surveys

This section will cover the fastest way to collect address data using surveys. NOTE: This section is aimed towards countries/cities using a  alternating numbering scheme. If your city is addressed using  quadrants, I cannot guarantee the effectiveness of this method. (since I don't live in such a city and have never tested it there). The effectiveness of this method for quadrants / alternative methods for quadrants should be discussed on the talk page.


  • Android Phone (sadly Keypad mapper does not support iOS)
  • Keypad Mapper 3 (Google Play, available in Fdroid Archive repository - hasn't been updated for years)
  • The ability to use JOSM (so not for beginners)



Firstly, get used to collecting address data using Keypad-Mapper-3. This app gives you a number pad to quickly enter and save addresses to later load into JOSM. There is a useful help page accessible in the settings.

Here are a few tips to help you survey at a decent pace:

  • Type housenumbers preemptively, so that you can enter them as quickly as possible. (E.g. after entering housenumber 24, immediately enter housenumber 26 in preperation for when you reach that house)
  • Remember your previously entered housenumbers. This makes it easier to type housenumbers preemptively. (E.g. after entering housenumber 104 to your right, remember that housenumber so after you enter the housenumber to your left you can immediately type 106 (and enter later))
  • Do not enter house names for houses that already have house numbers. House names do not provide any practical functionality. (However they are required in villages that don't have house numbers)
  • Last of all, practise surveying with good habits. This will make you faster at surveying.


The next part is editing in JOSM. Send your keypad-mapper data to your computer by either using the share button (then using something like email or secure sharing such as KDE connect) or by manually transfering it from the "Keypad-mapper-3" folder in your internal storage.

Load up the data into JOSM (open JOSM, Ctrl + O, find the osm & gpx file.) Turn on the imagery and download the openstreetmap data of the area you surveyed to check if there are any conflicts (e.g. addresses that you surveyed that have already been mapped.)

After checking if there are any conflicts, organize the data by moving the nodes above their respective houses on the aerial imagery. This needs to be done because the raw keypad-mapper data is very erratic.

Unorganized address data
Organized address data

DO NOT waste your time drawing building shapes. This is a slow and tedious process and can be done later. As of now, focus on quickly arranged/ organizing the address data.

Once this is done, select all the data (CTRL + A), copy it, and paste it into the OSM data layer (make sure the osm data layer is active before pasting)

Address Interpolation

In a Alternate numbering scheme, interpolation isn't that accurate. That is why I haven't mentioned it here. However, it may be the best method for a quadrant addressing system. Please discuss this in the talk page.