These past weeks our data team took a break from improving OpenStreetMap all around the globe and focused on mapping beautiful Ayacucho, Peru, where many of us are based. Our goal: to give Ayacucho the best map on OpenStreetMap in Latin America. Of course, we are hoping for fierce competition :)

After we calibrated imagery with GPS control points, we updated all elements on the map to correct location discrepancies, added new data from satellite imagery and then went out to survey the city for street names, neighborhood names and major points of interest. This is an ongoing effort; here is an overview of our work so far.

Ayacucho on OpenStreetMap after our mapping efforts.

Mapped all streets

95% of all streets are named now. To gather street names and one ways, we surveyed with walking papers. Some places in Ayacucho don’t have street names, only block names; we also mapped those.

Richman surveying the streets of Ayacucho.

Added major points of interest

We added around 700 major points of interest like public entities, financial, educational institutions, restaurants, and more. Just like with street names, we gathered this information with ground surveys.

Points of interest gathered in Ayacucho.

Map details

Beyond streets and points of interest, we added as much detail to the map as possible. Using satellite imagery and local knowledge we mapped many trails, parks, rivers, traffic lights, bus stops and trees.

Map details in the north of Ayacucho.


To coordinate efforts with other mappers in Ayacucho, we created a Facebook page. Our goal is to involve more people in Ayacucho to map their city on OpenStreetMap. We will soon be announcing the first Ayacucho geo meetup. Our goal is to build local community, recruit more mappers and bring OpenStreetMap as a viable mapping solution to NGOs, businesses and government. Finally, we are working on a proposal to import city building and address data to further improve our map. We are looking forward to working with everyone on the ground and from the international community to improve Ayacucho on OpenStreetMap. For any feedback, please get in touch on Twitter or on OpenStreetMap.

Progress made mapping Ayacucho in the past month.

Encuentra la versión español en mi diario de OpenStreetMap.