TagaSanPedroAko's Diary

Recent diary entries

Problem users, whether it be vandals, trolls, spammers, or undisclosed/”rogue” organized mapping projects, is considered a problem all across OSM, but I would like to bring up some top examples of notorious problem users and major incidents involving organized mapping groups from the Philippines. Such edits are a perennial problem in the Philippines OSM community, and particularly in the time of COVID, I think the extended mass quarantines has make this problem worse as more people will be spending time in front of their computer, laptop, cellphone or tablet. While we have a ticket system to monitor suspicious editing activity, I feel it’s kind of Wild Wild West in OSM in the Philippines; new users are increasing (usually ones who only edit a few features, usually in their home area, before riding off into sunset) and not everyone will be patrolling the map for fishy changesets.



Long-term vandal, often adding fantasy features usually in the Eastern Visayas region of the Philippines. Has abused multiple accounts. Mostly interested in power lines and roads. Also vandalized areas outside the Philippines,

Joey Samson

Vandalism related to speculative real estate and transportation projects, especially around Manila. Some edits resulted in mass deletions (e.g. a former movie theater south of Manila). Also pesters users to add admin boundaries. 2 accounts traced so far (1 deleted following block)

Niwre Erv Apotseg

Vandal from Mindanao. Mostly duplicated roads, but also have added fictional features. Comments often nonsensical alphabet soup. Had 3 sock puppets.

Mass copying from GMaps

We also got some around 2 suspected copyright violations done in organized mapping efforts, one around Batangas Province (organizer still unknown, but possibly local government effort) in December and another involving a local ride-hail app operator early to mid 2021. Both have been involved in wholesale copying from Google Maps, noticed after comparing coverage. The one in Batangas has been mostly reverted manually, but the problematic data hasn’t been redacted. For the one involving local ride-hail operator, all edits are reverted following one editor coming into touch with me to address issues, and opened discussion with the local community; all edits reverted and redacted, and two accounts blocked.

Addition of personally identifiable info

We also witnessed a case of mass addition of personally identifiable info (PII) in one mapping project done east of Manila in 2019, involving mapping of a public housing site. Another case, in 2020, involved a corporate account for a local broadband company.

Just discovered this edit involving sections of the Skyway elevated highway, which is for me, much of another exercise of the mapping for the renderer, something to do with the editor being a user (and major roads there generally use some shade of red and orange). Much of the Skyway is built as a road over a road due to space constraints in a very dense urban area like Manila (and is mapped as such), but on that edit and another previous edit by the same user, sections of it has been adjusted, the main argument being superimposition on some map renders such as those by I’m considering a revert of that plus its continuation for the reason of mapping for the renderer.

Last January, I’ve just came upon several newbie users in the Philippines who have accumulated over a thousand edits within a few days, adding a thousand POIs, which I discovered by comparing coverage, are more or less copyright violations from Google Maps (with some POIs being at completely odd spots, someting usual with GMaps in some places). I’ve been able to clean up a bunch of their edits, particularly those from a user named JP Baje and another working for a new ride-hail service in the Philippines, and asked the user about their source, but they never replied, and with their activity continuing unabated despite concerns from other fellow mappers back home, I have asked the DWG to have one of them blocked until they have read a message from the DWG addressing concerns. The other one hasn’t been blocked, and has stopped editing, but I’m trying to clean up their edits within my favourite locations while I’m trying to focus with mapping in Canada.

I have no idea why these fly-by-night editors would spring out here with the sole purpose of filling areas of several cities with POIs without providing their source, adding them one by one that make it hard to revert them in one huge sweep and disappearing later when the damage is done, but I think long and strict lockdowns (such as those in the Philippines) are driving this kind of mapping because in such situation, you can’t just go out of home – even within your neighbourhood – without having to present some form of travel authorization from the local government, or you’re a member of a demographic that is likely to get infected with COVID-19 (which in the Philippines, includes those under 14, above 60, or having a serious health condition as of the May 2021 quarantine restrictions) and I assume these users involved are unlikely to have been in those locations, before or during the mass quarantines. Any thoughts?

Though I am also involved on mapping in Canada, I still do not forget to keep updated with many infrastructure projects in the Philippines under the “Build, Build, Build” program under Rodrigo Duterte, as well as other major infrastructure projects under the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) not covered. Here is a list of some Philippine infrastructure projects I am working on since then:

NLEX Harbor Link

This expressway has opened in March 1, 2019, but it required some tweaks, such as the curved sections in Karuhatan (Valenzuela), the sections on Philippine National Railways (PNR) right of way, and the C-3 interchange (connects to Radial Road 10, and scheduled to open by December 2019). There is significant work modifying or deleting buildings affected by the expressway’s construction, and modifying the future connection with Radial Road 10 (a directional T interchange for the spur that connects to Radial Road 10).

Cavite-Laguna Expressway (Laguna section)

There is adjustments at the rotunda (roundabout) on Mamplasan Exit with SLEX, the new southbound lanes of Laguna Boulevard is marked open (except it needs some on-the-ground verification by other mappers), and South Boulevard, which connects to South Forbes Park and Ayala Westgrove Heights in Silang is extended east toward Laguna Boulevard.

Metro Manila Subway

Construction of this subway line, the first of its kind in the Philippines, began in March 2019, with only the Quirino Highway and North Avenue to be constructed. The whole route has been mapped, but since most portions are to be constructed soon, only the Quirino-North Avenue segment has been tagged as under construction.

Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway

Thanks to new GPX tracks and partial coverage of Bing imagery, portions of the Binalonan-Pozorrubio leg of the expressway has been realigned, and the southbound ramps of the Pozorrubio interchange has been corrected

Candon Bypass Road

It was already open in January 2019, but the bypass needed numerous additional edits like splitting it into a dual carriageway, adding a curved section on the approaches to a bridge in barangay Oaig Daya in Candon, and fixing the rotunda with another national road, the Candon-Galimuyod-Salcedo-Del Pilar Road.

Clark International Airport northern expansion

Another project under the Build, Build, Build program, it involved the addition of the future area of a new, modern terminal for Clark International Airport in Pampanga, and diversion of water flow of the Quitangil River to provide space for fill where the buildings, parking, and the future railway station to connect with the Manila-Clark Railway.

NLEX-SLEX Connector Road

Immediately after the partial opening of the NLEX Harbor Link is the groundbreaking of the NLEX-SLEX Connector Road, an unsolicited project which involves another elevated expressway that will connect Skyway in Pandacan, Manila with the NLEX Harbor Link in Caloocan. Some additional edits are done, such as the connection with Skyway and realignment of some sections of the elevated expressway to accommodate a future elevated route of the existing PNR tracks.

Skyway Stage 3

Construction of this expressway is continuing in Pandacan, Manila, as work is ongoing for the section that crosses a former container storage facility.

SLEX Toll Road 4 (extension to Lucena, Quezon)

Groundbreaking is done on March 26, 2019, alongside beginning of construction and engineering works, but I already made numerous edits for the future route of an extension of South Luzon Expressway. The first planned routes for the future expressway has been mapped as early as 2017, and the location of a future interchange with the existing mainline has been done as early as 2012, but as the project has been update numerous times, it required numerous painstaking edits which involved realigning the future road to follow existing Philippine government plans, drawing lots of land areas, from forests, to farmland, orchards and pastures, and marking possible overpass/underpass locations. The latest edits came within time of the groundbreaking, which involved a full redraw of the sections in Laguna, Batangas, and partially, Quezon, using existing map data, especially residential areas, which are being determined so the route will avoid dividing barangays into two.

STAR Tollway Pinamucan Bypass

Construction for this bypass route in eastern Batangas City has begun since 2018, but as another infrastructure project which is not yet visible on existing aerial imagery by Bing or DigitalGlobe, it required also painstaking edits to create a physically feasible approximate, which can be tweaked when newer aerials can be utilized.

Batangas City-San Pascual-Bauan Bypass

Another bypass project undertaken by the Department of Public Works and Highways, it involves construction of a 10 kilometer bypass which runs through rural areas of the city of Batangas, and the nearby municipalities of San Pascual and Bauan. Like the Pinamucan Bypass project, the lack of imagery that shows construction in progress means drawing an approximate route taking large residential areas in account.

NLEX Section 8.2

Though scheduled for construction in 2020, its route has been already drawn out, except for curved sections that appears to be physically infeasible. Some changes for this project involved drawing overpasses and underpasses and realignments of roads to be reconstructed. The future expressway will pass through many run-down squatters’ (or informal settler) areas, which are yet to be mapped, but may not need to be so since many of them will be demolished soon.

Southeast Metro Manila Expressway

The future route of this expressway has been drawn out in 2018, but as only the Skyway to C-5/Diego Silang Village leg is being constructed, most of the route has been tagged as proposed. The route may also need to be redrawn soon to keep with major updates, such as the proposed realignment of the C-5/Diego Silang and C-6 section so to avoid dividing existing residential areas in Taguig.

Central Luzon Link Expressway (CLLEX)

Mapping of this expressway project began in 2017, but as existing imagery do not reflect the ongoing reconstruction, most of the mapping are based on national government plans (under the Department of Public Works and Highways, with funding from Japan) as well as the existing irrigation system for the rice paddies on the area it will traverse, which are used to extrapolate a possible route.

Bicol International Airport

While nearing completion, its runway, taxiway and apron has been finished, and they are since mapped.

Tagum Bypass Road

Since the roads it will utilize has been mapped already, it just took a while to map this bypass project under the local DPWH office.

Flyover for Maharlika Highway in Tagum

Also under the same DPWH office that oversees the construction of the Tagum Bypass, it involves the construction of a 1 km flyover over the major junction with Pioneer Avenue (Route 909) and Apokon Road (Route 74)

Panguil Bay Bridge and approaches

A project under the “Build, Build, Build” program, it involved the construction of a 1 km bridge across Panguil Bay between Tubod in Lanao del Norte and Tangub in Misamis Occidental. Once opened, it will be the longest bridge in the Philippines after the San Juanico Bridge between Samar and Leyte.

LRT Line 1 South Extension

Slated to begin construction in April 2019, it will involve the construction of an elevated light rail system which will extend the existing LRT line between Baclaran in Parañaque and Roosevelt Avenue in Quezon City. As of 2019, only the Baclaran-Ninoy Aquino leg is to be built as right-of-way issues on the remaining sections are to be addressed.

While not all projects have been mapped yet (some of them are still in the design process), this provides a good idea for other Philippine infrastructure projects that may need to be covered in OpenStreetMap.

Once again, Batangas City’s map is growing again with updates, particularly on mapping building floors, addresses and names, missing buildings and POI’s, and land use zones.


In order to improve 3D renderings of the city’s buildings, especially those in the Poblacion, number of floors are being added through on the ground work using In addition, tagging of building addresses are also done, as there are many buildings with known addresses that can be sighted on outdoor signage. Building numbering also exists, but not all buildings indicate them. Names of buildings are also one part of building map improvements, as the building name form one part of many POI addresses.

Not only missing building details are added, but also many missing buildings constructed or existent since the past year. I mapped new houses and apartments inside Duluhan in Cuta, and a new commercial building along Lt. Col. D. Atienza Street. Building remapping is also done to redraw buildings that does not align properly with the most recent images. As part of this, the building occupied by Novo Department Store is remapped using DigitalGlobe Standard imagery and physical survey.

Points of interest

Many POIs scattered on the urbanized Poblacion and Cuta areas are being added one by one, also on the ground using

Land use zones

Land use zones have been part of my mapping work for Batangas City, but it is not in my priority on the previous mapping. I now placed it in my list of tasks for the city, to mark land use zones the LGU’s City Planning and Development Office should have added on their Comprehensive Land Use Plan. Supposedly, the land use tag should go on the large area, not on the individual buildings, especially buildings I, and Project NOAH volunteers, mapped. Land use has been already added on part of Poblacion (the area around barangays 15, 16, and 21), and some areas elsewhere, but most has been not yet mapped, so, I now slowly adding those zones based on previous data added to buildings by LGU employees.

Location: Montalbo Subdivision, Poblacion, Batangas City, Batangas, Calabarzon, 4200, Philippines

Batangas City’s map is slowly growing and updated, thanks to having MAPS.ME and imagery by DigitalGlobe through their API. Much efforts are on local updates, and an ongoing effort to map Meralco’s power network and public transport is being followed up, but most mapping is related to the local vicinity, especially POI’s

Local updates

Thanks for having Maps.Me, many POIs, particularly those in the Poblacion, can be added now while on the ground, and notes can be created at the same time, with uploading to the OSM database done when now connected to the Internet through WiFi, such as at home, on Plaza Mabini (which has public WiFi provided by Globe Telecom’s GoWiFi), or at the malls with free WiFi (such as SM City Batangas and Bay Mall, though the former has time-limited WiFi service).

Upon hearing of an area around Calicanto called “Lawas”, I soon added a note for it around the area called as such.

One latest update is a future bridge between Ferry, Kumintang Ibaba, and Gulod Labac, which I added to OSM after hearing the news of such construction during the All Saints’ Day vacation. The bridge is now mapped here as this

Being least detailed over the area along Route 436, I made some mapping of Lourdes Subdivision in Bolbok after attending a funeral service in Mt. Zion Memorial Park. I added a school (Princeton Science School), a home-based ‘‘lomi’’ restaurant, and a small Christian church, which is shown in this changeset. Further changes, like naming a street on the same area, adding an annex campus of a public school (Bolbok Elementary School), and correction the location of Princeton Science School, are done after returning back to Batangas City for Christmas.

Updates on the Kumintang Ibaba area are done through notes created by Maps.Me, after a ground survey, then mapping. After finding street names while on a tricycle ride through the back of Lyceum of the Philippines University Batangas, I added notes through the app, and made the changes on iD back home (see changeset 54641045).

With time to see the inside of University of Batangas - Elementary Department on December 15, I took time to see the building names, and made the changes after (see this).

Being the priority area, the Poblacion area (particularly on the commercialized areas along the major streets: P. Burgos, D. Silang, Rizal Avenue, and A. Evangelista) is one major part of the latest mapping effort. On the last day pf classes in the city, I added many POI’s along Rizal Avenue, A. Evangelista, and the Lumang Palengke site, via Maps.Me, which allowed adding POIs upon sight, and creating notes at the same time, and uploading the changes when now connected on the Net. These changes can be seen here and here.

On a trip back to San Pedro, Laguna, I took time to add one several POI’s and create notes for missing building names while on a jeepney to Batangas Central Terminal. The POI’s added can be seen at changesets 54702550 and 54702518. On that trip also, I marked and added the name of a street beside Lyceum of the Philippines University Batangas (see this changeset).

For the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception (reopened at December 5 after restoration following damage caused by the April 2017 earthquake swarm that rocked Batangas), many changes are done after on-the-ground observation of its grounds after attending a Mass on the 2nd Sunday of Advent (December 17). I added the whole grounds of the church, referred commonly as “Basilica Site”, chapels within it, statues of the Virgin Mary, Immaculate Conception, and the Sacred , and a walkway behind the main church. The additions and modifications can be seen at this changeset and this following one

With the Batangas Central Terminal being slowly developed, update is needed already. So, through on the ground survey and new imagery (via DigitalGlobe API), I updated the vicinity of the terminal, added access roads, bus shelters, toll booths at entrance and exit points, and some POIs, and redrawn a Meralco 13.8 kV line connecting to a guyed post with three 75 kVA transformers supplying 240/415 V power to the terminal facilities and concessionares. The nearby Isuzu dealer is set for remapping, but being out of scope of the intended mapping work, I will create changes later.

With expansion work not yet reflected on the map, Batangas Port is also part of my latest mapping for Batangas City. I added now the expansion area, including its grounds, roads, and warehouse buildings.

Coming back to Batangas City, I took time to find missing POIs, and soon adding them to OSM. I made a small number of edits to add POIs sighted on a bus trip between Alabang and Batangas City, and add subdivision grounds around Alangilan on the jeepney trip to Poblacion.


Power line mapping, particularly of the 69 kV networks by National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) and Batangas II Electric Cooperative (BATELEC-II), was the principal mapping work on Batangas City when not yet in Batangas City for a vacation. And on a few days, I took time to map the 69 kV subtransmission lines running along the future Calamba-Batangas Railway right of way, thanks to DigitalGlobe imagery through their API.

Being not updated since a number of 69 kV lines are relocated to a new switchyard constructed by NGCP originally to accommodate Meralco’s 69 kV lines connecting its substations in Bolbok and providing power to JG Summit in Simlong, I eventually redrawn the mix of NGCP and BATELEC-II 69 kV lines to connect to the new switchyard connecting to a pair of 200 MVA transformers (one is active, and the other one is a redundancy or back-up).

Meralco’s 13.8/7.97 kV system did not need any updates, save for correcting lines that form any of the circuits from Bolbok and Batangas City substations, but after arriving to Batangas City last December 9, a new 7.97 kV single wire line, connecting to a new guyed post with a 50 kVA transformer providing 220 volts to a commercial building beside it, is already placed, and I added it immediately, but using Level0, which required 2 changesets to add it (1st adds the posts and transformer, and the 2nd adds the line)


Much mapping is focused on renaming and adding jeepney stops, and expanding and remapping of the Batangas Central Terminal. Jeepney route mapping are no longer a priority, as the principal routes are already mapped, but mapping another route or modifying an existing one is still possible.

Future mapping prospects

A future railway line connecting Batangas City with Calamba is one among my future mapping prospects, and though no construction has started yet (the project, under the Build! Build! Build! Infrastructure program of President Rodrigo Duterte, is still in planning phases), I already tagged and mapped parts of the possible route, which will connect to Batangas Port instead of the Poblacion (i.e. at the Railroad Station/Maselang area, near Lumang Palengke), to connect with passengers disembarking from RoRo ferries, ships, and boats at Batangas Port, provide an alternate route for freight to Manila, which is primarily transported by trucks through the STAR Tollway and SLEX, and because of the possible right of way of a route to the original terminus at Poblacion being largely residential already, with some segments having roads laid over already.

There are plans for a future expressway which will extend STAR Tollway into Bauan, therefore decongesting Route 436 around San Pascual, but mapping of that road cannot be started yet until right of way has been already marked.

Updated Batangas City mapping page on OpenStreetMap Wiki

With many mapping being done, the Batangas City mapping coordination page on OSM Wiki, also included as part of WikiProject Philippines, has already needed update. With many sitios and subdivisions being mapped slowly, updates are done to reflect this. A list of very important POIs is now included, which is originally blank.

Location: Montalbo Subdivision, Poblacion, Batangas City, Batangas, Calabarzon, 4200, Philippines

While I will be starting using changesets in Tagalog, sometimes along with English, I started providing a translation of a changeset comment to another regional language, for example, Cebuano, when doing an edit in a specific area in the Philippines where it is the dominant language. While translations to Cebuano can be easily provided through Google Translate, this is something that is problematic with other regional languages, like Ilocano, Bicolano, Hiligaynon, Waray, Chavacano, etc., as a possible translator may not be reliable enough to provide a grammatically correct translation that a local can understand. Are there any possible reliable online translators for other Philippine languages, like for those I pointed above?

Developments on southwestern barangays of San Pedro, Laguna

Posted by TagaSanPedroAko on 4 July 2017 in English (English). Last updated on 22 November 2017.

It was since January 2016 when I requested to map the less mapped barangays in southwest San Pedro, Laguna, which includes Magsaysay, United Bayanihan, Riverside, Laram, and Langgam. But, now, this effort now came to fruition.

From July 2017, after doing ground mapping after visiting Langgam, the less mapped areas of San Pedro, Laguna, finally has grown. Several POIs have been added, plus street names. The main priority is the important POIs, like schools, barangay halls, and churches. I have uploaded a GPX track as a guide when someone wants to realign the roads there, that are traced from aerial imagery, that may be offset.

Here are some POIs added on the survey:

  • Divine Gift School
  • Vian Rechel Academy
  • IETI
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • 7-Eleven (Magsaysay branch)
  • San Pedro Relocation Area Cooperative
  • United Bayanihan Community Church
  • Alfamart (United Bayanihan branch)
  • Ministop (United Bayanihan branch)
  • Polytechnic University of the Philippines - San Pedro Campus
  • Laguna Relocation Community School
  • Upper Villages Christian Academy
  • Laram Barangay Hall
  • Most Holy Name of Jesus Parish
  • United Montessorean School of San Pedro (Langgam campus)
  • Jesus the Faithful Savior Christian School

Yet, several POIs and street names found on the survey are still not mapped, but can be mapped on following changesets. An update on the OSM Wiki page for San Pedro, Laguna provides all mapping updates (with dates for tracking latest updates). And for other POIs not found on the survey, I leave it to the other users (especially locals) to map, or note for others to resolve. The POIs added may start increased efforts to map the least mapped barangays of San Pedro.

Location: Langgam, San Pedro, Laguna, Calabarzon, 4023, Philippines

New developments in Batangas City

Posted by TagaSanPedroAko on 27 April 2017 in English (English). Last updated on 6 May 2017.

Since starting mapping in 2015, Batangas City is still developing, and many newer developments have come. Much of the new developments are occurring along Diversion Road and the Batangas Port area. Subdivisions are growing into the suburban and rural barangays. Two new power plants have opened. But, current imagery used for mapping creates a problem to map these new developments. Though Bing announced imagery updates this 2017, it will be a long wait.

Developments to be mapped is shown below, along with description, notes, and status.

  • Batangas Health Specialists Medical Center (involved also relocation of some NGCP 69 kV lines due to construction work on part of right-of-way of those subtransmission lines. Polygon and building now mapped, but not the 69 kV line relocation.)
  • Batangas City Grand Terminal expansion (adding commercial areas and covered bus terminal. Traffic rerouting mapped, but not the new developments)
  • new car dealers along Diversion Road (Suzuki Batangas City, Isuzu Batangas City, Hino Batangas City. Now added)
  • San Gabriel and Avion power plants (opened 2016. Still unmapped, while new Mapbox images can be used now.)
  • NGCP Batangas Substation (addition of two 150 MVA transformers and 69 kV switchgear to accommodate Meralco’s Mahabang Parang - Batangas City 69 kV subtransmission lines and 69 kV power supply for JG Summit in 2015, and relocation of some 69 kV lines in 2017, that replaced some tap connections with connection to a new 69 kV bus in the substation in 2017. Transformer additions, including new bay, are mapped, but not the new switchgear, due to lack of usable imagery from Bing. Mapbox now has coverage? 69 kV line relocation still not mapped, while this can be mapped without using any aerial imagery.)
  • Camella Solamente (started 2015. May appear on new Mapbox imagery for Batangas City.)
  • Monte Maria Batangas (opening of chapel below statue of the Virgin Mary. Building below the statue already mapped, along with realignment of surrounding road, adding of Meralco 13.2 kV distribution line and restaurant. Needs further update).
  • Batangas Port expansion (started 2015/16 and ongoing. Only a few warehouse buildings mapped, but expansion area is mapped)
  • SM City Batangas (new side entrance, hallway shops, and restaurants, and relocation of some shops and SM Supermarket. Partially mapped.)

As these developments go around the clock, these are to be placed in priority. Barangay mapping, further land use, woodland and farm mapping, and other local updates, especially around Poblacion, Cuta, Pallocan West, Kumintang Ibaba, Kumintang Ilaya, and Alangilan, are also to be added to the mapping priority list for Batangas City.

Increasing mapping activity in Batangas City (update 1)

Posted by TagaSanPedroAko on 27 April 2017 in English (English). Last updated on 26 December 2017.

Mapping in Batangas City has been increasing after the LGU-led mapping from March to April, yet, it caused some problems in the current data because of mapping practice that looks like tagging for the renderer. Yet, aside from the LGU-led (Batangas City CPDO, CDRMMO, and OCVAS) mapping, there is a new surge of mapping activity in Batangas City. It is part of the MapTVPL activity in Batangas. One among who led the mapping is (GOwin)[, who mapped Batangas State University, and the surrounding area. Batangas State Univerity’s map has improved, with some named streets inside added, buildings named, and new buildings mapped. It is also the same case for the adjacent Batangas National High School (BNHS), whose buildings have been named and more facilities inside mapped, since I started mapping it’s buildings, plus mapping during the NOAH-ISAIAH HOT task in Batangas.

It may be expected that the Batangas City LGU may start another mapping project, but should have to avoid problems with existing map data, especially buildings and POI’s. The rural barangays have improved, thanks to Batangas City employees contributions, with barangay halls, water supply tanks, schools and day care centers mapped, and a lot more must be expected. Marking the centers of barangays, using the newly added data from Batangas City LGU mapping, are still needed, and further mapping of other missing critical POI’s especially schools, as they serve as evacuation centers in times of calamities.

After Project NOAH-ISAIAH HOT tasks and also my rural mapping in Batangas City, there is also an increase in mapping critical POI’s in the rural barangays of Batangas City, either on the lowlands or the mountainside. Schools and barangay halls are being added in rural barangays, and using names of those newly added schools or barangay halls, I trace barangays and add the nodes for them via Level0 (instead of JOSM). Rural mapping, especially of critical POI’s and infrastructure, may be useful for disaster risk reduction and rural development. Before, Batangas City has the urban areas only mapped in detail, until Project NOAH-ISAIAH started a HOT task that added buildings not only in the lowland urban areas, but also in the rural areas.

Thanks to all the efforts of local mappers, especially “Brad-M”, “digmaan” and “imeeperezveedor”, the critical POI’s (schools, day care centers, barangay halls, health centers) and infrastructure (roads and buildings) of the rural barangays of Batangas City are being mapped in more detail, like the urban areas, especially the Poblacion area. And it is possible that the city’s government, via the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRMMO) or City Planning and Development Office, may lead such mapping for disaster preparedness and response, and rural development.

Increasing mapping activity in Batangas City

Posted by TagaSanPedroAko on 13 March 2017 in English (English). Last updated on 22 November 2017.

On the last few days, mapping activity around Batangas City, where I map a lot, from POI’s, power networks (NGCP and Meralco), and buildings, have been increasing. And while I added many POI’s and street names (mostly the very familiar ones) in that city, there is a lot still missing, that locals are working on. Some local users in Batangas City that started mapping their city includes:

  • imeeperezveedor
  • jonadelcrispin
  • Brad-M (from the Banaba area)
  • Angelique Tan
  • crops production
  • dunah
  • GMMM
  • Pranses
  • mgjeanleyesa
  • alain curt mazo
  • Heneral-Hulab
  • MjCat
  • gberts
  • OCVAS R&DC (owned by the Office of the City Veterinarian and Agriculturist/OCVAS in Bolbok)
  • EDGF
  • digmaan

Looking at their edit history, almost all are mapping within Batangas City, and are possibly local.

Yet, as they are still new, mapping mistakes may still occur, and they can be cleaned up once spotted. And increased mapping activity in Batangas City is good news that locals there are inspired to map, thanks to all my efforts to map there, and the mapping activity for Project NOAH-ISAIAH (now defunct from February 28, 2017, but validation work is still continuing). And looking at the Google Map Maker “graduation” at March 31, 2016, the number of OSM users mapping Batangas City may increase from this update.

Location: Park Spring, San Antonio Zone 3, San Pedro, Laguna, Calabarzon, 4023, Philippines

The map of Batangas City is now filled with a lot of buildings. Before, there were only a few buildings, until I started large-scale mapping of that city (POIs, roads, buildings, land use, power distribution network, etc.) from there or at home, and Project NOAH-ISAIAH started a HOT project to map buildings in Batangas for disaster risk analysis. Thanks to my efforts, and those who participated in the Project NOAH-ISAIAH HOT project.

Location: Park Spring, San Antonio Zone 3, San Pedro, Laguna, Calabarzon, 4023, Philippines

I am busy mapping Batangas City again this Christmas vacation, as continuation of my task of improving its map since I started to edit OpenStreetMap for most of the time. I have mapped Batangas City in Google Map Maker, but I am more encouraged to map Batangas City in OSM because of better data, in contrast to Google Maps, which I see as worse, as well as the Map Maker shutdown resulting from the “Android pissing on Apple” incident in Pakistan. Thankfully, I discovered OSM and I started to share my knowledge and improve it to its present state.

My updates on mapping Batangas City includes several mapping activities: updating, expanding, and improving the power lines in Batangas City, now focusing on NGCP’s 69 kV subtransmission system and 13.8 kV distribution system, and Meralco’s 7.97 kV and 13.8 kV distribution system and 69 kV subtransmission system, adding missing and new POI’s (adding the first Alfamart branch in Batangas City, some missing POI’s in P. Burgos Street at Poblacion, and adding missing businesses around Balagtas, Julian Pastor Memorial Market, and Cuta) and updating some POI’s, (renaming the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception to follow the sign outside, verifying the name of a day care center in Cuta, near St. Bridget College, and adding the name of Eternal Gardens Batangas, which was missing before and missed out by my large-scale mapping activity last year) mapping sports facilities (basketball, badminton, and tennis courts, and a swimming pool in the Batangas Coliseum), and mapping buildings as part of Project NOAH-ISAIAH’s task for Batangas (HOT OSM project 1886).

First part is power line mapping, where I continue to expand and improve the electric power distribution system in Batangas City, which includes NGCP’s 69 kV subtransmission system and a supplementary 13.8 kV distribution system, and Meralco’s 69 kV subtransmission system and the 13.8 kV and 7.97 kV distribution system. Meralco, or the Manila Electric Company, which serves Metro Manila and nearby provinces, distributes electricity to Batangas City and San Pascual, but is isolated from the rest of Meralco’s franchise area, with other cities and municipalities around, like Bauan, San Jose, Lobo, Alitagtag, Cuenca, and Lipa being served by the Batangas II Electric Cooperative, a provincial electric cooperative. The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines originally supplies Meralco’s 13.8 kV and 7.97 kV distribution system through its 69 kV subtransmission system, but, with increasing power demand in Batangas City (“load increase”), power reliability issues on NGCP’s existing subtransmission lines, and JG Summit in Simlong requiring higher power demand (see Meralco’s 1st quarterly report, 2nd quarterly report, and 3rd quarterly report for 2015), Meralco responded by constructing three subtransmission lines, all operated and owned by the company itself, with two lines (constructed between early 2013 and early 2015) to connect NGCP Batangas Substation in Mahabang Parang with Meralco Batangas City substation , and one line (constructed from mid 2014 to early 2015) to connect Batangas City Substation and JG Summit, with a backup connection with Bolbok Substation, in case of outage of the three subtransmission lines supplying Batangas City Substation are shut down. While I am not yet contributing to OSM, I saw the construction of those lines, with the presence of tall poles laid out at many roads around Batangas City.

While the 230 kV lines of NGCP’s transmission system are already OK (power line data already OK and 230 kV switchgear at Batangas Substation fully mapped), I now focus on the subtransmission and distribution systems, either operated by Meralco or NGCP. For Meralco’s subtransmission and distribution system, I removed portions of 440 V split-phase lines composed of a neutral instead of two 220 kV lines and a neutral, extended portions of Meralco 69 kV subtransmission lines and further extended an overhead cable leading to a substation inside Saint Bridget College, surveyed distribution transformer locations and info (rating, phases), improved existing distribution circuit relations, especially in Poblacion, where most of those circuits converge, added poles (some used to support a guy wire for a nearby pole) and more information for existing ones, and added more 7.97 kV and 13.8 kV lines in Cuta and Malitam. For NGCP’s subtransmission and distribution system, I extended portions of the Batangas - San Miguel Purefoods - Fortune Cement (Lafarge) 69 kV line in Kumintang Ibaba and Balagtas, added portions of 13.8 kV lines in Balagtas, and expanded the 69 kV switchgear at Batangas Substation to accomodate extended 69 kV lines. Along with expanding and improving Meralco and NGCP’s power line map in Batangas City, I am gradually retagging poles used on the 69 kV lines, from tower to pole and adding pole designs on most poles on Meralco’s distribution lines, as part of possible implementation of an expanded power pole tagging.

Second part of mapping Batangas City is additions/updates on points of interest. First is mapping the first Alfamart branch in Batangas City, found on Recto and Ofelia Building A along M.H. Del Pilar at Barangay 1, Poblacion. After a Mass at Christmas day, we visited Plaza Mabini, ate at KFC near P. Burgos corner A. Evangelista, and bought “puto bumbong” (purple-colored rice cake cooked on bamboo and sold during “Simbang Gabi” or “Misa de Gallo”) , “bibingka” (rice pancake), and popcorn from food vendors near the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, exactly at the time of Simbang Gabi. While we are buying puto bumbong and bibingka at the front of the Basilica, I saw an Alfamart sign not far from Plaza Mabini, and it indicated the presence of an Alfamart store. Having that seen while outside, being in field mapping, I decided to map it out, along with some missing POI’s I found along P. Burgos when we went to KFC, like a Landbank branch and a Shanghai Siomai kiosk. I have mapped many Alfamart stores, primarily at Cavite and Laguna, since the opening of more stores starting from their entry into the Philippines, after their commercial success at Indonesia, where they started.The following updates aside from the new Alfamart store and additional POI’s at P. Burgos are renaming of two POI’s, like the Basilica of the Conception and a day care center at “Cuta Journal” area of Cuta, near Saint Bridget College. For the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, I renamed it to follow the sign at the church complex’s entrance, but, I have to add the original name as English name (name:en) instead. For the day care center at Cuta Journal, it was previously named as “Lingap Bata Educational Foundation”, but re-verifying it on the ground, while we are walking to the Basilica for the Mass, I found the real name. I first saw the real name of the day care center, “Lingap Kalinga sa mga Paslit Educational Foundation” through Google Street View using my cell phone or tablet at my home at San Pedro, but being aware that it cannot be used as a source for OpenStreetMap data, I rather waited to go to Batangas City for vacation and verify it on the ground myself. Following those renaming edits are additions of missing POI’s at Balagtas and Cuta. I added a Chinese school, Batangas Kipse Academy (actually “Batangas Kipsi School” on their advertisement along M.H. Del Pilar towards Cuta), the main garages for Alps the Bus at Balagtas, a Suzuki dealer and a trucking company garage and office at Diversion Road,added the name “Eternal Gardens” to the unnamed cemetery at the same barangay. While I am making many sets of edits at Batangas City last year, I missed out that cemetery, with the other cemetery at Concepcion only having the name “Eternal Gardens” since it is added to the map.

Next is mapping some sports facilities, primarily using Bing. Seeing them while browsing Bing imagery to trace, I decided to map them out. Some sports facilities I mapped are basketball courts (at Pallocan West), and the swimming pool at Batangas Coliseum.

And last, I contributed some buildings and building address data for Project NOAH-ISAIAH. My edits since I returned back on mapping for Project NOAH-ISAIAH with changesets using the prescribed edit comment on the Instructions at the OSM Task Manager, but I prefixed the location (in brackets), as I use a changeset comment format used by ianlopez1115 (Ian Lopez), seav (Eugene Allan Villar) and Nate Joshua; however, for the following edits, I used the prescribed edit comment on the instructions, but the first edits having incorrect hashtags, with #hotosm-project-1886 being #hotosmproject-1886. For the later edits, I used the correct hashtag. My contributions for Project NOAH-ISAIAH are buildings in Pallocan West, some barangays in Poblacion, and Balagtas, including adding address info to buildings.

Yet, my mapping activity will continue, with more updates to be done. But, the present aerial imagery that can be used is only Bing, and they are now outdated, that some new developments, like the expanded NGCP Batangas Substation at Mahabang Parang, Camella Solamente at Sorosoro Karsada, and new buildings and POI’s along Diversion Road cannot be mapped easily without GPS traces or local knowledge. so, I requested Mapbox for additional imagery to cover Batangas City, along with the remaining part of Lipa, San Jose, Ibaan, Cuenca, and part of Alitagtag. I hope Mapbox will add them at the next year or other times at the near future

Happy mapping!

Location: Montalbo Subdivision, Poblacion, Batangas City, Batangas, Calabarzon, 4200, Philippines

With Typhoon Nina (international name: Nock-Ten) wreaking havoc last December 25 and 26, it sparked my interest to map areas hit by the typhoon. While wide-scale mapping still not starting in the wake of the typhoon, I now started mapping areas for disaster response.

I started mapping areas hit by Typhoon Nina first at Catanduanaes, where the typhoon made its first landfall. at Virac, the province’s capital, I have mapped many houses there, along with roads, schools, a church, and fishponds, along with paths within them. Fortunately, those areas I mapped have traceable Bing imagery, and I traced several POI’s, like two schools, and a Mormon church, which I recognized using the aerials.

While it is still a few days after Nina wreaked havoc, I have already started mapping for disaster response, and I expect that this may be followed by Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team projects, that may involve other mappers to map typhoon struck areas, especially on areas that lack quality aerial imagery, like most of Quezon, which has most part that lacks Bing coverage, but, Mapbox Satellite has, however, on some areas, imagery is not so fine, unless MapGive will have high-resolution imagery for mapping those typhoon-struck areas.Well, it would have been better that areas that will be affected by Typhoon Nina would have been mapped before, like what is done in Samar Island before Typhoon Ruby (Hagupit) struck Eastern Visayas and southern Luzon.

Location: Montalbo Subdivision, Poblacion, Batangas City, Batangas, Calabarzon, 4200, Philippines

Visualizing how I made Batangas City's map lively from 2015

Posted by TagaSanPedroAko on 22 December 2016 in English (English). Last updated on 16 March 2017.

Here is the visualization of features I added/edited around Poblacion, Batangas City and nearby barangays: Visualization of TagaSanPedroAko's features edited in Poblacion, Batangas City

…and for the whole city, including portions outside the city boundary:

Visualization of TagaSanPedroAko's features edited in Batangas City and nearby areas, excluding Verde Island

According to those visualizations, using ITO OSM Mapper, I made most edits on Batangas City are concentrated on the urban part of the city, including Poblacion, Pallocan West, Gulod Itaas, Libjo, San Isidro, Cuta, Malitam, Santa Clara, Calicanto, Kumintang Ilaya and Kumintang Ibaba, Alangilan, and Balagtas, and on a lesser degree, rural areas, like the Tabangao and Pinamukan areas, Simlong, Pagkilatan, Ilijan, Sirang Lupa, the Banaba and Tinga areas. And it seems that I made most contributions in Batangas City since I started mapping in 2015 (actually started in 2014, but inactive until April).

My mapping of Batangas City started with fixing many bad data and adding many POI’s, roads, several buildings, and some of the jeepney routes that forms a large network, with most routes emanating from the “Poblacion” to suburban barangays, and into rural areas or other cities and municipalities. The things I saw with the map of Batangas City before I started making large-scale changes is lack of POI’s, misaligned roads, and lack of road directions and turn restrictions. Routing using OSM map data during that time would be risky, as one may use a one-way street and disobeying turn prohibition or no entry signs, owing to the prevalence of one-way streets, whose directions varied through the years.

My first edit in Batangas City is done through the in-browser editor iD, but switched to JOSM, when I started a surge of edits, starting from this changeset up to this changeset.

Follow-up sets of changesets includes

  1. 31708856 to 31767078

  2. 31785187 to 31785628

  3. 31835036 to 31836903

  4. 31845780 to 31860416

  5. 31893860 to 31897996

  6. 32542459 to 32677528

  7. 32735379

I will continue improving the map of Batangas City, because:

  • There may be changes on POI’s on some areas

  • There are missing/moved/closed POI’s on SM City Batangas, which I have made an indoor map

  • There are missing power lines, like Meralco’s 13.2/7.62 kV distribution lines and 69 kV subtransmission lines, and NGCP’s 69 kV subtransmission system, that seem to be useful for navigation, as they may be landmarks and most run along roads.

  • There is lack of land use (commercial areas, aside from areas occupied by malls or some POI’s)

Location: Park Spring, San Antonio Zone 3, San Pedro, Laguna, Calabarzon, 4023, Philippines

Strange routing?

Posted by TagaSanPedroAko on 8 June 2016 in English (English).

This routes from Batangas City to Tunasan, Muntinlupa (Mapzen/OSRM] looks strange. Rather than taking Susana Heights/MCX Exit, Susana Heights Road, and National Road (Daang Maharlika), navigations directions tell you to exit at Carmona Exit and take Governor;s Drive, General Malvar Street and then turn left to National Highway (Daang Maharlika) northbound. My knowledge tells that the main route to Tunasan is via Susana Heights Exit. OSM routers still wants you to take Carmona Exit to Muntinlupa or San Pedro, and it looks like a routing issue.

Why is that happening? Can someone tell me reasons for that routing situation and possible road data fix-up?

Updating Evia

Posted by TagaSanPedroAko on 8 June 2016 in English (English).

I made many updates on Evia along Daang Hari in Almanza Dos, Las Pinas, along with some developments in Starmall Prima in Molino, Bacoor, Cavite. It was since many months I was not updated on developments of that mall owned by Vista Malls of Vistaland by former senator Manny Villar. I have only gone to Evia to eat at the McDonald’s store there or sometimes buy groceries at Rustan’s Fresh.

With an advantage to survey Evia after months, I added new developments in the mall, including new buildings, stores, restaurants, roads, and traffic direction on the parking areas, which are now pay parking areas. I also made a partial indoor map of the mall.

Following this update on Evia, which has been contributed by Schadow1 and me, I will make updates soon on Festival Mall in Alabang, when I have an advantage to visit and do a survey of new buildings of the mall on the River Park area.

Location: Almanza Dos, 2nd District, Las Piñas, Southern Manila District, Metro Manila, 1751, Philippines

Finally, I got a chance to map Bacoor and Imus, with two trips where I am able to survey those areas, the first being from NAIA Terminal 1 towards home, and the second from home to SM City Bacoor via Molino, Mambog, and Palico, SM City Bacoor towards S&R Membership Shopping in Imus, and S&R Membership Shopping towards homme.

On the first trip, my survey found a split, new traffic lights, and pedestrian overpass on Aguinaldo Boulevard, new traffic lights and marked motorcycle lane (marked by a blue line on the right lane) on Molino Boulevard, and new traffic signs, installed by the Department of Public Works and Highways Cavite District Engineering Office, showing destinations of several intersections on Molino Road. I already mapped the new traffic lights and destinations shown on the newly installed signs, and yet to map the split, traffic lights, and traffic lights on Aguinaldo Boulevard and the motorcycle lane on Molino Boulevard.

On the second trip, my survey found several missing business, missing business names, location of barangay boundaries on the Mambog area, a traffic light on the intersection on Aguinaldo Highway and Tirona Highway, an Alfamart branch near SM City Bacoor, a no left turn sign on the Aguinaldo Exit of SM City Bacoor,, a missing church along the Aguinaldo Highway, a welcome marker on the Bacoor-Imus boundary, several missing kilometer stones, a split and new traffic lights on Aguinaldo Highway near Tanzang Luma, missing barangays of Imus (like Bayang Luma, Patindig Araw, Anabu I-B, Anabu I-D, Anabu II-B, and Pasong Buaya 1), a missing name of an industrial area in Anabu, Imus, a S&R New York Style Pizza store inside S&R Membership Shopping in Imus, a missing Kawasaki motorcycle store, and a lot more. Most changes have been done,after that trip but a few is to be done soon.

I preferably enjoy mapping areas while on the go, like on trips, where I sometimes bring a notebook, a pencil, and a sharpener (in case the pencil tip goes dull) to create a survey map that I use to collect information before adding them to OpenStreetMap. But, when I don’t have a notebook and pencil, I memorize the names and locations of places I found on the survey before adding them to OSM, yet, a few fades away from my memory and a second survey is needed to retrieve them back. Now, with a new tablet, I am able to take pictures with lat-long information to determine the location of a certain place.

My mapping activity on Bacoor and Imus is still few, but with my personal knowledge of those areas, because I have relatives living in Imus, I am able to add a few places that I know of without needing a survey.

Location: Park Spring, San Antonio Zone 3, San Pedro, Laguna, Calabarzon, 4023, Philippines

Following a message sent by schadow1, I now started participating on mapping for #ProjectNOAH-ISAIAH. Currently, I started adding buildings on my barangay, San Antonio, in San Pedro, Laguna, as part of the mapping project. The only problem is what imagery to use. For example, Bing imagery of San Pedro, Laguna look much older, while Mapbox imagery (using DigitalGlobe imagery) is much reliable for adding buildings, but a few cloud covered areas make building mapping difficult. I prefer Mapbox imagery on mapping Metro Manila and northwest Laguna, but Batangas still do not have any reliable quality imagery (Batangas City’s imagery can be only seen at a high zoom level, and only Bing can be used, but parts of Batangas City, near Taysan is only seen at a high zoom level.) I am planning to extend that mapping work for #ProjectNOAH-ISAIAH to Batangas City and other areas in Batangas, but I am only limited to map areas with reliable quality imagery.

Location: Park Spring, San Antonio Zone 3, San Pedro, Laguna, Calabarzon, 4023, Philippines