Using OpenStreetMap data in QGIS

OSM data for Arusha rendered in QGIS

One of the most commonly asked questions on the Tanzania GIS User’s group site is “where can I find good road data?” The data we had available generally 10 years ago was pretty poor – patchy and uneven coverage of the country, and poor metadata. now has a great deal of data available, contributed and edited by its users, and this can be used directly in QGIS.

 Click the image to the right to see an example … this is the OSM highway data downloaded as a shapefile from and rendered using the rule-based rendering for the layer.