Mapillary coverage is growing fast and their team is adding exciting new features like traffic sign recognition this week. The ability to use Mapillary imagery for OpenStreetMap is particularly exciting, so I’ve set out to take a look at mapping two of the most important features for navigation – turn restrictions and speed limits – with Mapillary’s help. Here is how to map these features with the two most popular OpenStreetMap editors.

max speed

Spotting a speed limit on Mapillary.

Mapping with iD Editor

To work with Mapillary on OpenStreetMap’s web based iD Editor, enable the Mapillary layer:

show how to enable Mapillary layer

You can then follow roads to look for speed limits or turn restrictions as seen in the animated gifs below.

iD turn restriction dialog

Mapping a turn restriction in iD Editor.

iD speed limit setting

Mapping a speed limit in iD Editor.

Mapping with JOSM

OpenStreetMap’s desktop editor, JOSM, does not offer direct Mapillary integration, but you can use the Mapillary website to browse images while editing in JOSM. The website comes with an edit button that allows you to hop directly into JOSM or iD Editor. To map turn restrictions, first install the necessary plugin in JOSM:

Installing the turn restrictions plugin.

You can then explore areas on the Mapillary website and click “edit” to open JOSM (make sure remote control is enabled):

The following animated gifs show how to map a turn restriction and a speed limit in JOSM. JOSM also has a nice plugin for proposed turn lanes.

map a turn restriction

Mapping a turn restriction in JOSM.

map a speed limit

Mapping a speed limit in JOSM.

More data

It’s possible to glean more information from Mapillary than just turn restrictions and speed limits. Here are some features I’ve been able to map:

  • Number of lanes on a road, separating turn lanes and through lanes
  • Cycling lanes
  • Sidewalks and crosswalks
  • Traffic lights
  • Road surface
  • Points of interests like banks, shops, fire hydrants, petrol stations, cafés, etc.

A wish list

While using Mapillary with OpenStreetMap, I ran into a few items that could be streamlined to provide a smoother user experience:

  • Show traffic signs layer in iD Editor (we’ve heard from Mapillary that this is happening)
  • Larger Mapillary image in iD Editor – often the pictures are too small to see details
  • Embed Mapillary support in JOSM – this would eliminate the need to hop between windows
  • Fine tune the blurring algorithm so that street signs aren’t excluded as they are here
  • A link from images on Mapillary directly to OpenStreetMap that opens iD Editor in the correct location

All images by Mapillary / CC BY-SA 4.0