The International Council for Science's Committee on Data for Science and Technology (ICSU-CODATA) Global Roads Data Development Task Group has overseen work to develop a digital, public domain global road map under the name Global Roads Open Access Data Set, Version 1 (gROADSv1).
The aspirational goals of the CODATA Task Group is to develop a global roads data set that will be:
- globally consistent (in terms of the underlying data model and attribute coding);
- spatially accurate (~50m positional accuracy);
- topologically integrated;
- suitable for mapping at an approximate scale of 1:250,000;
- focused on roads between settlements (not streets);
- up-to-date and with the possibility of frequent updates;
- well documented; and
- freely distributed (on an "attribution only" basis).
gROADSv1 does not fully meet all these criteria, but it represents an important advance on prior small spatial scale data sets such as vector smart map version 0 (VMAP0), with an approximate map scale of 1:1m. The Task Group welcomes contributions of country and regional roads data sets to the Global Roads collection. To communicate with Task Group, visit the CODATA Roads wiki contact page.
Those wishing to receive regular updates on the Global Roads collection, or to exchange information on roads data sources, are invited to sign up for the ROADSDATA discussion list.