[Talk-us] More TIGER importing

Mike N niceman at att.net
Wed Mar 14 12:53:34 GMT 2012

On 3/14/2012 6:40 AM, Alexander Jones wrote:
> Hey, is there some sort of tutorial for a beginner (me) to import TIGER 2011
> data for a really small town (Wheatland, CA)? I'm going to be doing a bus
> route there, but half the streets on it aren't even in OSM.

Welcome to OpenStreetMap!   The good news is that the area around 
Wheatland hasn't been edited by a license decliner, so it will be safe 
to work there; no data will be removed in April 2012. (per 

   The tool most of us have been using for this is JOSM, and some 
variation of the methods here:


   I would add to these to use JOSM's "Simplify way" to prevent bringing 
in streets where a single block contains 200 nodes.

   Just converting the TIGER shapefiles into OSM format is a challenge - 
I've uploaded a copy of Yuba county from 2011 -


   This is not the most advanced conversion algorithm, but should be 
usable.    I can see where the new subdivisions have been added around 
Wheatland, so this should help.    It's important to be sure that only 
the ways you edit are uploaded, and not the entire file.  My method is 
something like this:

   1. Download the area of interest in JOSM.
   2. Open the OSM TIGER file
   3  After finding the new or corrected roads, go to the TIGER layer
   4  Select the new roads to be imported
   5  Activate the downloaded data layer
   6  Paste the new roads
   7  "Simplify way" to clean up geometry
   8  Be sure the roads are properly connected to existing roads
   9  Add turning circles, etc.   In many cases the new TIGER geometry 
must be corrected to align to aerial.   If you have a number of GPS 
traces, be sure to align the aerial imagery to the GPS traces first.

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