City Mapathon: (San) Juan more time!

Our Ambassador Erwin recaps a mapathon of the MapAmore initiative in San Juan, Philippines, and shares good examples for evacuation and emergency related mapping on OpenStreetMap.

The post was originally published on his OSM diary.

Thank you to all the participants who spent their Saturday afternoon with us, mapping the city of San Juan over Independence day weekend. We're also thankful to San Juan City (and their Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (DRRMO)) for making the venue and facilities available. And a shout out to Mapillary for the refreshments.

This is the second city mapathon and a follow-up activity to enhance the free/open data collection of the city of San Juan and to complete the leftover tasks from the last mapathon, chiefly working in the second district of the city: San Juan Mapathon Data © OpenStreetMap contributors (ODbL); Image © MapCraft

San Juan Mapathon Data © OpenStreetMap contributors (ODbL); Image © WHODIDIT


Evacuation Shelters and emergency: prefixes

The designated evacuation shelters in the city are re-purposed facilities made for a different, primary purpose. Hence, we adopted a tagging convention initiated by the OSM-tw community, now widely used in Taiwan, where the prefix tag emergency: is added to the secondary tags related to emergency and disaster risk reduction mapping.

For example, a sports centre that's been designated by the village council as an evacuation shelter for displaced persons may then be tagged, as appropriate, as follows:

name=Palakasan Covered Court

During non-emergencies, they function as originally intended—as a sports center, but are re-purposed as shelters during emergencies. Would they have been dedicated shelters, the emergency: prefix would be dropped and they would simply be tagged as:

name=Palakasan Evacuation Shelter

San Juan Mapathon We've completely mapped the evacuation centers, barangay halls of the city, except for one barangay where no data was available. Click to view data and details on Overpass Turbo. © OpenStreetMap contributors.

The DRRMO did not provide the capacity data of the facilities, and that would've been useful to have.

Fire Stations and Hydrants

San Juan Mapathon Participants from the Bureau of Fire Protection (their back to the camera): Inspector Antonio (right) and Officer Aquino listen intently to Mr. Rally de Leon's (facing the camera) lightning talk during the break

The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) is the country's national agency (under the Department of Internal Affairs) responsible for implementing national policies related to fire fighting and prevention. Two members of personnel from their local office participated in the mapathon. They expressed their plans to pursue the validation and mapping of the city's fire-fighting resources.

San Juan Mapathon Copy of the Fire Hydrant Map of San Juan City (by the Maynilad Corporation) brought by the BFP crew

ToFix tasks and Validation

San Juan Mapathon Advanced mappers use JOSM to work on To-Fix task #13

San Juan Mapathon Eugene helping with the validation of the participants' edits

Blitz Decks & Pizza

To add some fun and variation to our mapathon, we introduced a longer break period coupled with Blitz Decks. The floor was made available to anyone who'd like to present about anything (hopefully, free/open source or geo-related, but any topics were welcome (except religion and politics).

OSM and Project NOAH

San Juan Mapathon Here's Dianne, getting ready for her talk about how Project NOAH uses OSM—fueled by pizza and soda, courtesy of our friends from Mapillary—yay!

Neighborhood Mapping and Addressing

San Juan Mapathon Rally de Leon talks about his experience in neighborhood mapping and the importance of addressing

Hail Hydra(nt)!

San Juan Mapathon Mapping Hydrants in OSM, how we got our first hydrants, and how El Deposito figured in our history, by yours truly.


All these data sets are now available from OpenStreetMap. Thank you to everyone who made this possible. We're looking forward to our next mapathon!

Got questions or ideas in mind? Send us a Telegram, an email (mapamore AT ngnuity DOT xyz), or follow us on Twitter.

I enjoyed hearing the different viewpoints from people who came to try out mapping for the first time. San Juan Mapathon Kids to remind us to have fun while we're working. :)

Again, we failed to take a proper group photo. Everyone's too busy mapping or helping out!

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