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Ordnance Survey adds roads to open datasets



Deal with Department for Transport makes new road maps available under Public Sector Mapping Agreement

National mapping agency Ordnance Survey (OS) is planning to release a new digital road map, with more detailed information than before, as part of its new commitment to open data.

It will contain information such as road widths, traffic calming measures and weight restrictions, taking in data submitted by local authorities through the National Street Gazetteer, which is maintained by GeoPlace, OS's partnership with the Local Government Association. An OS spokesperson said it will be continually updated as the features change, and is part of the agency's move towards a "capture once, use many times" approach.

It will be available under the Public Sector Mapping Agreement, through which public bodies sign up once for access to all of OS's products, from the end of March. Commercial organisations, such as satellite navigation providers, will have access from the end of this year.

"The 30,000 members of the PSMA will be able to access the data as they want and use it with other data," the spokesperson said. This can include information such as planned road works and cycle paths.

The Department for Transport will contribute £3 million towards the map's creation.

Better journeys

Transport minister Robert Goodwill said: "This mapping project has the potential to substantially improve how we look after our roads. It will help make journeys more efficient and ensure traffic keeps moving. This funding demonstrates our commitment to funding the technology of the future, which will drive economic growth and create jobs."

Earlier this week OS announced the availability of OS OpenMap for developers to build new products, along with a group of open data products: an Open Water Network, a new Gazetteer and unique property reference numbers on a royalty free basis. The spokesperson said the announcement of the road map was delayed as the deal with the DfT was being finalised.

Pictured: Transport minister Robert Goodwill at the launch of the new road dataset, courtesy of Ordnance Survey

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