Building a crowd you can trust

with Visit Flanders and OpenStreetMap


By Jos Pyck


2020 - 2021: during Corona pandemic and lockdowns hiking & cycling was the only possible leisure activity


➡ Huge increase in online cycling and hiking route planners (e.g. 530.000 in 2019 ➡ 1,3 million unique users in 2020, +155%)

➡ broadening of the target group ​eg families with young children

​     ➡ different needs in the route planning proces because of the lockdown

                 - public toilets (closed horeca)

                 - playground

                 - charging locations for e-bikes

                 - picknick tables

                 - ...

Let's go 2 years back in time

  • The tourist governments didn't have the missing POI data to share as open data for route planning apps
  • The data is spread over different provinces, municipalities, agencies,...
  • The data is stored in various formats with different attributes




 OpenStreetMap to the rescue
with a specialized survey tool

(More about this later)


But how to get citizens, municipalities and institutions contributing? 


...because the data quality of the POIs varies a lot from region to region

The why of the POI:

  • through a clear message: "data from hikers for hikers & data from bikers for bikers
  • through a short campaign movie with the right face.
    Sam De Bruyn

... we kept it simple

  • was spread through the communication channels of the provinces
  • call for 300 Flemisch municipalities to participate
  • niche press
  • Vlaanderen Vakantieland and other touristic social media channels
  • hiking and cycling organisations (Grote routepaden, Cycling Vlaanderen, Pasar,...)
  • Regionale Landschappen... 

Campaign 'Pin je punt'

(More about the results later)



By Pietervdvn

the technical story of Pin je punt


Database with geodata

Editable by everyone

Usable by everyone


Community of people

Various programs to edit

Various data users

Various data interests

iD? JOSM? Vespucci?

MapContrib? StreetComplete?

Overpass? Changeset? Way? Point? Relation? Discussion? Mailing list? Wiki? Tag?
WFS? WMS? Slippy maps? QGIS? Vector tiles? Key? Amenity? OsmAnd? Maps.Me?

Confusing for new contributors


Map viewer and map editor

Easy to use

Many maps, each with a specific focus


Map viewer and map editor

Easy to use

Many maps, each with a specific focus

Existing datasets?


Quality and freshness of the source dataset?



Existing datasets?

Copy-paste into OSM only if of excellent quality and accuracy


We did setup a process where community members
review import candidates

Existing datasets?

Reusable tooling was built for Toerisme Vlaanderen which

  1. Loads a dataset
  2. (Helps to) review the data
  3. Filters away duplicates
  4. Creates a map note on OSM


Every layer will also automatically detect these "import candidates" and show them



Launched 8th of march 2022

Data collection in Flanders from Knokke to Maaseik

1100 new points created

85 points reviewed via MC; 135 via other means
+ 400 directly imported; ~1000 discarded as already existing


560 images added

4200 attributes added


(every pin is a set of edits)


By Seppe Santens


Web Feature Services

➡ making the data easily usable for GIS professionals


  • Maintaining high quality datasets is hard work
    Can and should the government collect all interesting data itself?

  • Many hands (can) make light work
    Have no fear of reusing crowdsourced data instead of building your own database

  • Focus on reuse is still new for governments

We hope that Pin je punt can change minds in public sector

... it changed minds in the tourist sector

The future is bright!

Made with