Maps For Everyone

Status: Ongoing

Highlights: 3000+ people sensitized | 4 million buildings & 200,000 km roads mapped

Problem and Context

Like many other developing countries, Nepal does not have freely available detailed online maps. While traditional mapping agencies target mapping needs of big organizations and expert users, everyday needs of map data for small organizations and citizens at large remain unmet.

Mapping the entire Nepal or even Kathmandu Valley is a huge task - no single organization or individual can accomplish this. It requires an incremental contribution from a large number of people, i.e. mapping community.

KLL in OSM Community Building 

We build a community which contributes to OpenStreetMap - a free and editable map of the world. It is free to view, free to contribute and even free to download. In our quest of creating a Maps for Everyone, we do the following:

  • Sensitize students, development agencies, government and non-government organizations about OSM through Sensitization Presentations.
  • Deliver Mapping Workshops (also called Mapping Parties) to train people on mapping.
  • Expand its coverage and enhance the quality of OpenStreetMap data.
  • Stimulate innovations around OSM and OSM data.

Our Contribution

By 2015, we have accomplished the following:

  1. We have delivered numerous sensitization presentations to universities, government agencies and international development organizations - directly reaching out to over 1650 people.

  2. We have trained over 1400 people in OpenStreetMap through numerous Mapping Parties.

  3. We have actively mapped major points-of-interest (POIs) and critical infrastructure in OpenStreetMap. See below the before and after images to see the difference:


The impacts of Maps for Everyone goes beyond hard numbers. The OSM community members from Nepal were among the 9000+ digital volunteers who helped map post-disaster Nepal immediately after the 2015 Gorkha earthquake. Among other things, these maps helped the Nepal Army plan around 300 rescue operations, and helped a number of national and international organizations like the USAID, Canadian DART (Disaster Assistance Response Team) plan their relief and response operations.

The base map prepared by the OSM community also helped QuakeMap to give locational context to its reports. These geo-located reports were used by aid organizations and voluntary groups to plan and execute their relief efforts. Map data produced by the OSM community have been used in the variou places across nations to give locational context to Vulnerability Capability Assessment of communities across the nation.

Due to almost a decade long’s contribution of the OSM community, OpenStreetMap now has the most detailed street maps of Kathmandu and most parts of the nation. These data are not only free to view and access but can also be downloaded and used for free.

twitter KLL's Earthquake Response