WikiProject Costa Rica

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Costa Rica, Central America
latitude: 9.6, longitude: -84.27
Browse map of Costa Rica 9°36′00.00″ N, 84°16′12.00″ W
Edit map
External links:
Use this template for your city

Costa Rica is a country in Central America at latitude 9°36′00.00″ North, longitude 84°16′12.00″ West.

Flag of Costa Rica Costa Rica Mapping Project,
the home of Costa Rica on the OpenStreetMap wiki.
¡Pura Vida! Welcome to the project for mapping efforts in Costa Rica!
You can find here national events, ongoing projects, map status and mapping guidelines, as well as links to other pages directly related to the mapping of Costa Rica.
You may also find a list of contacts and mappers involved with the OpenStreetMap community in Costa Rica.
OpenStreetMap images (and underlying map data) are freely available under OpenStreetMap License.

Administrative subdivisions

In Costa Rica an official hierarchical administrative division is in use, but the locals hardly apply it or even know where they live or work. The division works on the following way:

Down to Distritos, there is a well defined geospatial cartography division, but the barrios are not well defined in most of the districts and are part of the local culture.

Provinces, Cantons and Districts

Click on a name of a province, canton or district to see a map with the corresponding border line highlighted. If a name does not have a link then the border is still not mapped.

Provincia ISO
3166-2
1 San José
relation 3223004
CR-SJ
Cantón
Acosta
Distrito
TODO
Alajuelita
Distrito
Alajuelita
Concepción
San Antonio
San Felipe
San Josecito
Aserrí
Distrito
TODO
Curridabat
Distrito
Curridabat
Granadilla
Sánchez
Tirrases
Desamparados
Distrito
Damas
Desamparados
Frailes
Gravilias
Los Guido
Patarrá
Rosario
San Antonio
San Cristóbal
San Juan de Dios
San Miguel
San Rafael Abajo
San Rafael Arriba
Dota
Distrito
TODO
Escazú [1]
Distrito
Escazú (San Miguel)
San Antonio
San Rafael
Goicoechea
Distrito
Calle Blancos
Guadalupe
Ipís
Mata de Plátano
Purral
Rancho Redondo
San Francisco
León Cortés Castro
Distrito
TODO
Montes de Oca
Distrito
Mercedes
Sabanilla
San Pedro
San Rafael
Mora
Distrito
TODO
Moravia
Distrito
La Trinidad
San Vicente
San Jerónimo
Pérez Zeledón
Distrito
TODO
Puriscal
Distrito
TODO
San José (capital)
Distrito
Catedral [2]
Carmen [3]
Hatillo [4]
Hospital [5]
Mata Redonda [6]
Merced [7]
Pavas [8]
San Sebastián [9]
San Francisco de Dos Ríos [10]
Uruca [11]
Zapote [12]
Santa Ana
Distrito
Brasil
Piedades
Pozos
Salitral
Santa Ana
Uruca
Tarrazú
Distrito
TODO
Tibás
Distrito
Anselmo Llorente
Cinco Esquinas
Colima
León XIII
San Juan
Turrubares
Distrito
TODO
Vázquez de Coronado
Distrito
Cascajal
Dulce Nombre de Jesús
Patalillo
San Isidro
San Rafael
2 Alajuela
relation 3222933
CR-A
Cantón
Alajuela (capital)
Distrito
Alajuela
Carrizal
Desamparados
La Garita
La Guácima
Río Segundo
Sabanilla
San Antonio
San Isidro
San José (Alajuela)
San Rafael
Sarapiquí
Tambor
Turrúcares
Alfaro Ruiz
Distrito
TODO
Atenas
Distrito
Atenas
Concepción
Escobal
Jesús
Mercedes
San Isidro
San José (Atenas)
Santa Eulalia
Grecia
Distrito
TODO
Guatuso
Distrito
TODO
Los Chiles
Distrito
TODO
Naranjo
Distrito
TODO
Orotina
Distrito
TODO
Palmares
Distrito
Buenos Aires
Candelaria
Esquipulas
La Granja
Palmares
Santiago
Zaragoza
Poás
Distrito
TODO
San Carlos
Distrito
TODO
San Mateo
Distrito
TODO
San Ramón
Distrito
TODO
Upala
Distrito
TODO
Valverde Vega
Distrito
Toro Amarillo
TODO
3 Cartago
relation 3223054
CR-C
Cantón
Alvarado
Distrito
Capellades
Cervantes
Cipreses
Pacayas
Santa Rosa
Cartago (capital)
Distrito
TODO
El Guarco
Distrito
TODO
Jiménez
Distrito
TODO
La Unión
Distrito
Dulce Nombre
San Ramón
Tres Ríos
Oreamuno
Distrito
Cipreses
Cot
Potrero Cerrado
San Rafael
Santa Rosa
Paraíso
Distrito
TODO
Turrialba
Distrito
TODO
4 Heredia
relation 3221947
CR-H
Cantón
Barva
Distrito
TODO
Belén
Distrito
La Asunción
La Ribera
San Antonio
Flores
Distrito
Barrantes
Llorente
San Joaquín
Heredia (capital)
Distrito
TODO
San Isidro
Distrito
TODO
San Pablo
Distrito
Rincón de Sabanilla
TODO
San Rafael
Distrito
TODO
Santa Bárbara
Distrito
Jesús
Purabá
San Juan
San Pedro
Santo Domingo
Santo Domingo
Distrito
TODO
Sarapiquí
Distrito
Cureña
La Virgen
Las Horquetas
Llanuras del Gaspar
Puerto Viejo
5 Guanacaste
relation 3222919
CR-G
Cantón
Abangares
Distrito
TODO
Bagaces
Distrito
TODO
Nicoya
Distrito
TODO
Carrillo
Distrito
TODO
Cañas
Distrito
TODO
Hojancha
Distrito
TODO
La Cruz
Distrito
TODO
Liberia
Distrito
TODO
Nandayure
Distrito
TODO
Santa Cruz
Distrito
TODO
Tilarán
Distrito
TODO
6 Puntarenas
relation 3223028
CR-P
Cantón
Buenos Aires
Distrito
TODO
Corredores
Distrito
TODO
Coto Brus
Distrito
TODO
Esparza
Distrito
TODO
Garabito
Distrito
TODO
Golfito
Distrito
TODO
Montes de Oro
Distrito
TODO
Osa
Distrito
TODO
Parrita
Distrito
TODO
Puntarenas (capital)
Distrito
TODO
Quepos
Distrito
TODO

Isla del Coco (marine reserve) area 128373311

7 Limón
relation 3223056
CR-L
Cantón
Guácimo
Distrito
TODO
Limón (capital)
Distrito
TODO
Matina
Distrito
TODO
Pococí
Distrito
TODO
Siquirres
Distrito
TODO
Talamanca
Distrito
TODO

Costa Rica borders tagging

While the borders for the seven Provinces of Costa Rica are already done, a lot of Cantons and almost all Districts are still missing. Once you got the coordinates for the points that define the borderlines, do the following:

  • Draw the borderlines in OSM or import the data.
  • Create a relation of type boundary from all ways that make up the border of an area (Canton, District or Barrio).
  • Set the admin_level=* tag value to 6 for a Cantón, 8 for a District and 10 for a Barrio.
  • Set the name=* tag in the relation with the official name in Spanish of the administrative subdivision.
  • Set the name:en=* tag in the relation if the subdivision name in English is different.
  • Set outer role for all member border ways.
  • If there are some enclaved areas that are excluded from the area if the subdivision, add their border ways with an inner role.
  • Add a member node with admin_centre role for the place of the capital.
  • Optionally add a member node with label role for locating the position of the label at low zoom level (this node may be named but will not be rendered on maps): this is needed only for subdivisions that have enclaves to exclude or has a large concavity, to avoid placing the label completely outside the effective area. At higher zoom levels, the names will not be rendered as nodes but along the borders if they can fit there, using names defined in the relation (node members with label role won't be used at all).
  • Optionally add other informative tags for the subdivision, such as national reference numbers, postal codes, wikidata=* element identifier (or a Wikipedia article name), and population from census data (with a date).

Costa Rica roads tagging

Main guidelines:

  • Please use the official classification by the MOPT (Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes / Ministry of Public Works and Transportation), remember that OSM stands by a verifiability principle and should use the official road classification, Costa Rica's OSM should provide the same information as an official map.
  • Just because you use a shortcut inside residential areas, it doesn't mean that shortcut has a higher priority in its classification, specifically, don't tag shortcuts as highway=tertiary (or worse, highway=trunk, highway=primary, or even highway=secondary) so that it would look prettier in your GPS unit for daily commutes.
  • Also, a highway=secondary road that is widely used doesn't convert it into a highway=primary.
  • Use tags properly:
    • Use long textual names (like Calle Hungría Libre) as alt_name=* and the numeric names as name=* (Calle 42).
      • A few exceptions are widely known roads by their textual name alone (Paseo Colón for example).
    • Use ref=* only for official road numbers.

The first thing to keep in mind when tagging roads in Costa Rica is the fact, that these roads in most cases do not meet European standards. Even main highways like the Carretera Interamericana (Panamerican Highway) may have links with cobblestone surface that just lead to a couple of private houses.

That's why it is a good idea to depend of the importance of a road for tagging instead of the state the road actually is in.

The importance of the main roads has been defined as primary, secondary or tertiary by the MOPT.

It is recommended to follow these definitions even if some roads, like the tertiary road 301 south of San Ignacio should be used with a 4WD only. These state information can be given by surface and description tags.

The MOPT defines the following categories:

  • Red Vial Nacional Primaria (One or two digits)
  • Red Vial Nacional Secundaria (Three digits)
  • Red Vial Nacional Terciaria (Three digits)

Check here for the Official road maps.


Costa Rica road names and numbering

There are five different kind of road names in Costa Rica, they are defined according to their orientation, the numbering starts from a main road (Calle 0, Calle Central, Avenida Central, ...) and depending on the geographic orientation they get the number:

  • Calle: North-South ( | )
    • Odd (1, 3, 5, 7...) numbers on the West side of Calle 0 or Central.
    • Even (2, 4, 6, 8...) numbers on the East side of Calle 0 or Central.
  • Avenida: West-East ( -- )
    • Odd (1, 3, 5, 7...) numbers on the North side of Avenida 0 or Central.
    • Even (2, 4, 6, 8...) numbers on the South side of Avenida 0 or Central.
  • Diagonal: Southwest-Northeast (/)
  • Transversal: Southeast-Northwest (\)
  • Via: Used for those national roads in highway=trunk, highway=primary, highway=secondary, highway=tertiary. They are delimited by "Kilómetro" stones each kilometer.

Please use the whole name for each kind of road (ie, Calle, Avenida, ...) when naming the streets and NOT an abbreviation (C. C/, Av., etc).

"Autopistas" (Trunks)

THERE ARE *NOT* ANY highway=motorway IN COSTA RICA, what the locals know as such, are actually trunk lines.

There are a handful of trunk lines, locally known as "autopistas" which would translate as "motorway", but they are not by international definition, just separated way two-lane highways, therefore they MUST be tagged as highway=trunk, these are the "autopistas".

  • Autopista General Canas (Part of Route 1): Between San Jose (East) and Alajuela (West)
  • Autopista Florencio del Castillo (Part of Route 2): Between Zapote (West) and Cartago (East)
  • Autopista a Caldera (Part of Route 27): Between San Jose (East) and Caldera (West)
  • Braulio Carrillo (Part of Route 32): Between San Jose (West) and Limon (East)
  • Circunvalación (Route 39): This a ring circling San José, as of 2014 it is still unfinished (Missing a segment in the North).

No other highway in the country can be tagged as highway=trunk, even part of the aforementioned list need to be tagged as highway=primary as required (When the physical design of the road stops having a separation between the lanes).

"Red Vial Nacional Primaria","Ruta Nacional" (National Primary Roads)

Administratively they are primary roads, part of these can be a trunk as stated previously. So, the administrative tagging must be highway=primary, but when the highway is physically a highway=trunk, it should be tagged as one.

Examples of these routes include the 1, 2, 32. By definition any two or one digit route numbers.

"Red Vial Nacional Secundaria","Ruta Regional" (National Secondary Roads)

MUST be tagged as highway=secondary as administratively designated by the MOPT.

"Red Vial Nacional Terciaria","Ruta Regional" (National Tertiary Roads)

The tertiary roads should be tagged as tertiary.

"Travesias"

This is like a fourth administrative category, but they are usually well known routes that were recently assigned a number. They can be tagged as highway=tertiary. Add the appropriate five digit route number.

NOTE: Curiously, many of the route number of the "travesias" are also the corresponding nearest postal code.

Sources:

Other streets, roads and tracks

Most of the other routes in Costa Rica are residential or unclassified, with a lot of tracks all over the country.

And if applicable, add:

Status

From time to time somebody comes along who did not read the mapping guidelines above or just does not care about them. In order to make it easer for those who do care, all parts of every important road in Costa Rica are gathered in a relation. That makes it easier to check if the road is still intact and it also helps fixing problems that an edit might have caused.

Route From Via To Check and Fix Status
107 Route 118 San Rafael de Poas Grecia relation 4079271 01.Oct.2014: Ok
111 Heredia Belén SJO relation 4100149 09.Oct.2014: Ok
114 Route 128 at Jesús Monte Gitano Route 126 at Barva relation 5676127 19.Nov.2015: Ok
118 Route 3 at Barrio San José Grecia Naranjo relation 4079380 01.Oct.2014: Ok
119 Route 3 at Río Segundo Route 126 at Barva relation 5676128 19.Nov.2015: Ok
120 Route 126 at Vara Blanca Volcáno Poás relation 4079639 01.Oct.2014: Ok
123 San Joaquín de Flores Santa Bárbara Alajuela relation 4099173 09.Oct.2014: Ok
125 Alajuela Route 126 at Carrizal relation 5676129 19.Nov.2015: Ok
126 Heredia Carizal, San Miguel Route 4 relation 4079808 19.Nov.2015: Ok
127 Santa Bárbara Route 126 relation 4099202 09.Oct.2014: Ok
128 Santa Bárbara Barva relation 4099446 09.Oct.2014: Ok
129 San Joaquín de Flores Route 111, Belén relation 4099517 09.Oct.2014: Ok
130 Alajuela San Isidro San Pedro de Poás relation 4079461 19.Nov.2015: Ok
140 Ciudad Quesada San Miguel relation 5676285 19.Nov.2015: Ok
146 San Pedro de Poás Route 120 relation 4079545 01.Oct.2014: Ok
708 Sarchi Sur Bajos del Toro Route 140 at Río Cuarto relation 5676286 19.Nov.2015: Ok
718 Route 107 at Tambor Route 130 at Itiquis relation 5674127 19.Nov.2015: Ok
712 Route 130 at San Isidro Route 146 at Fraijanes relation 5676130 19.Nov.2015: Ok
719 Route 118 Tuetal Norte Route 718 at Itiquis relation 5674128 19.Nov.2015: Ok
727 Route 107 at Tambor Tuetal Norte Route 130 at Alajuela relation 5674129 19.Nov.2015: Ok
10103 San Pedro only one way to Sabana relation 4080924 02.Oct.2014: Ok

TODO: remove old table if roads have relations and were moved to the new one.

Travesia Location Highway tag Status
10101 Sabana to Antigua Aduana tertiary Done
10102 Sabana to San Pedro tertiary Done
10103 Sabana to San Pedro tertiary Done
10104 Sabana to San Pedro, Avenida 10 tertiary Partial, Requires checking the east end, as it continues but there isn't a direct link
10105 Downtown San Jose South to North, Calle Central tertiary Done
10106 Downtown San Jose North to South, Calle 1 mostly and a block of Calle 1 tertiary Done
10107 Downtown San Jose North to South, across new China Town, maybe obsolete tertiary Partial, need to check one way roads
10108 Downtown San Jose North to South residential Done
10109 Downtown San Jose North to South residential Partial, need to check one way roads
10110 Downtown San Jose North to South residential Done
10111 Sabana to San Pedro residential Done
10117 San Pedro to Zapote residential Done
10120 San Pedro to Zapote residential Done
10802 Purral residential Done
10804 San José, Guadalupe residential Done
11401 San José, Moravia residential Done
11402 San José, Moravia residential Done
11501 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11502 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla, UCR residential Done
11504 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11505 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11506 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11507 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11508 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11509 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11510 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11511 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11512 Los Yoses residential Done
11513 San José, Montes de Oca, Sabanilla residential Done
11801 San José, Curridabat to Zapote residential Done
11804 San José, Curridabat residential Done

Natural environment

National Parks

Currently, there are very few National Park areas mapped in Costa Rica, if possible we should ask around to government sources to find the official cartographic polygons and import that data to OSM.

We should abide by the following list: List of national parks of Costa Rica

Beaches

One of the most popular places in Costa Rica are its beaches, mapping those is very easy.

Inside the border of the coastline, map an area covering the sand of the beach and tag it:

There are places where instead of pleasant sand, a bunch of rocks is what you will see, they can be tagged also with:

Agricultural areas

Due to the high production of natural products in Costa Rica, particularly coffee, the recommended tags for "cafetales" (Coffee Plantations) would be:

Coffee plantations

Points of interest

Catholic churches

Suggestions for tagging the dozens of Catholic churches in this country, they are of particular importance as a custom of using them as points of reference, so, even when a contributor isn't catholic or even religious, all the churches should be added as soon as possible.

By any means please add another denomination's churches, synagogues or mosques (I don't think there are much more than two of the two last) too.

Draw an area around the building of the church and add all the following tags:

With all those tags added, the render will display an area with a Christian cross and the name of the church.

International names

Almost all names should be in Spanish, except a few locations where the local native name in Bribri, Cabecar and such, is still in use.

Use name:cai=NATIVE NAME in those circumstances.

cai according to ISO 639-2 is used for Central American native languages.

A few places can have names in English, German or Chinese, use the appropriate tags there. See [Multilingual names] for more information.

Garmin maps

Routable maps of Costa Rica and Central America for Garmin devices are available here. They are updated every week.

See also

OSM - Central America - Country/Territory List +/-

Belize - Costa Rica - El Salvador - Guatemala - Honduras - Nicaragua - Panama

North America – Countries and territories
Countries: The Bahamas · Antigua and Barbuda · Barbados · Belize · Canada · Costa Rica · Cuba · Dominica · Dominican Republic · El Salvador · Grenada · Guatemala · Haiti · Honduras · Jamaica · Mexico · Nicaragua · Panama · Saint Kitts and Nevis · Saint Lucia · Saint Vincent and the Grenadines · United States
Territories: Anguilla (UK) · Bermuda (UK) · The British Virgin Islands (UK) · The Cayman Islands (UK) · Greenland (DK) · Guadeloupe (FR) · Martinique (FR) · Montserrat (UK) · Navassa Island (US) · Puerto Rico (US) · Saba (NL) · Saint Barthelemy (FR) · Saint Martin (FR) · Saint Martin (NL) · Saint Pierre and Miquelon (FR) · Saint Eustatius (NL) · The Turks and Caicos Islands (UK) · The United States Virgin Islands (US)