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Use Walking Papers in ArcGIS

Walking Papers© allow you to print maps, draw on them, and then scan them for editing to help OpenStreetMap improve its coverage. Walking Papers© is a product of Stamen Design's Michal Migurski.

This workflow will tell you how to acquire, install, and use a script that allows you to use a Walking Papers scan in ArcMap. The script is called ArcGIS Walking Papers Requester.


  • Before you can use the workflow described here, verify that you've installed the ArcGIS Editor for OpenStreetMap Desktop Component.
  • This workflow also assumes that you have acquired a Walking Papers image and have submitted it back to Walking Papers as a scan.

Installation of ArcGIS Walking Papers Requester

  1. Download the ArcGIS Walking Papers Requester tool for your ArcGIS Desktop version. For version 10.0, download it from here: ArcGIS Walking Papers Requester 10.0. For version 10.1, download from ArcGIS Online, here: ArcGIS Walking Papers Requester 10.1. Once downloaded, unzip the file to a directory local to your ArcGIS Desktop installation.
  2. Confirm that the following exist in the unzipped file:
    • OSM Tools.tbx - Toolbox
    • - python script
    • template.xml - metadata for the script
    • README.txt - file with credits and license information.

Workflow - Two Parts

Part I - Load the Walking Papers into ArcMap

First, you will load the Walking Papers scan into ArcMap. Follow the steps below.
  1. Open the Walking Papers© website and navigate the page hosting your scan (see Prerequisites on this page if you haven't loaded in a scan). You'll need the ID of the scan when you run the ArcGIS Walking Papers Requester script.
  2. Open a new document in ArcMap.
  3. Create a folder connection to the directory where you unzipped the ArcGIS Walking Papers Requester.
  4. In that directory, expand the 'OSM Tools' toolbox, and double-click the Request Walking Papers Scan script. The 'Request Walking Papers Scan' dialog box appears.
  5. In the first field called Walking Papers Scan ID, enter the ID of your Walking Papers scan from the Walking Papers website. A scan ID will have an alphanumeric format, similar to this example: 2b6r8z7x. Note, you do not have to put in the URL to the ID, just the alphanumeric string itself.
  6. In the second field called Output workspace folder, enter the directory where you would like the tool to store the data cache representing the Walking Papers scan. It can be an existing folder, or you can create a new one.
  7. Click OK. After a few moments, your scan will be loaded as a raster graphic into ArcMap.

Part II - Download OSM Feature Data, Edit, and Upload

Now, you will use the ArcGIS Editor for OSM tools to download vector data from OpenStreetMap, edit it, and upload the changes to OpenStreetMap.
  1. Open the OpenStreetMap Toolbox that was installed with the ArcGIS Editor for OSM Desktop Component installation.
  2. Double-click on the Download, Extract and Symbolize OSM Data tool. Fill out the fields in the dialog - for 'Extent of data download' you can select the extent to be the same as the Walking Papers scan that is loaded in your Map document. After filling out the fields, click OK to run the tool. If you want more information about the 'Download, Extract and Symbolize OSM Data' tool, click here.
  3. When the 'Download, Extract and Symbolize OSM Data' tool completes, you will have point, line, and polygon features loaded into the map document over the Walking Papers scan. Use any ArcGIS Editing tools you want to make edits corresponding to your Walking Paper scan to the feature classes. For more information on editing in ArcGIS, see the ArcGIS Desktop Editing Tools documentation.
  4. When you have finished editing, save your edits and stop editing.
  5. Use the Upload OSM Data tool to upload the changes you made in the feature classes per your Walking Paper Scan to OpenStreetMap. If you want more information about the 'Upload OSM Data' tool, click here.

After uploading your edits, you should be able to see them in OpenStreetMap (login with your username/password, and click the 'my edits' link within the hour. Note that you may not see them in the OpenStreetMap tiles right away; the tiles are generated on a different schedule.
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Last edited Aug 6, 2012 at 9:42 PM by eggwhites, version 6


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