OSMscale v0.5.1


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Add a Scale Bar to 'OpenStreetMap' Plots

Functionality to handle and project lat-long coordinates, easily download background maps and add a correct scale bar to 'OpenStreetMap' plots in any map projection.



OSMscale is an R package to easily handle and project lat-long coordinates, download background maps and add a correct scale bar to 'OpenStreetMap' plots in any map projection. There are some other spatially related miscellaneous functions as well.


OSMscale is available on CRAN: CRAN_Status_Badge downloads Rdoc

It relies on OpenStreetMap to do the actual work, thus rgdal and rjava must be available.

  • On Windows: Check if Java is available. There should be no errors when running install.packages("rJava") ; library(rJava) in R. If necessary, install Java in the same bit-version as R (eg 64bit). The Java binary file must be on the search path, which will normally happen automatically.

  • On Linux: open a terminal (CTRL+ALT+T) and paste (CTRL+SHIFT+V) the following line by line to install gdal and rJava:

    sudo apt update
    sudo apt install libgdal-dev libproj-dev
    sudo apt-get install r-cran-rjava
    library("rgdal"); library("rJava") # should not return errors
    q("no") # to quit R
  • Now actually install OSMscale from within R:


# To update to the most recent development version:

basic usage

Assuming a data.frame with lat-long coordinates:

d <- read.table(sep=",", header=TRUE, text=
"lat, long # could e.g. be copied from googleMaps, rightclick on What's here?
55.685143, 12.580008
52.514464, 13.350137
50.106452, 14.419989
48.847003, 2.337213
51.505364, -0.164752")
png("ExampleMap.png", width=4, height=3, units="in", res=150)

map <- pointsMap(lat, long, data=d, type="maptoolkit-topo", proj=putm(d$long), scale=FALSE)
scaleBar(map, abslen=500, y=0.8, cex=0.8)
lines(projectPoints(d$lat, d$long), col="blue", lwd=3)
points(projectPoints(52.386609, 4.877008, to=putm(zone=32)), cex=3, lwd=2, col="purple")




If direct installation doesn't work, your R version might be too old. In that case, an update is really recommendable: r-project.org. If you can't update R, try installing from source (github) via instGit as mentioned above. If that's not possible either, you might be able to source some functions from the package zip folder

Vectorize(source)(dir("path/you/unzipped/to/OSMscale-master/R", full=T))

This creates all R functions as objects in your globalenv workspace (and overwrites existing objects of the same name!).

Functions in OSMscale

Name Description
proj CRS of various PROJ.4 projections
projectPoints Project lat-lon points
checkLL lat-long coordinate check
degree decimal degree coordinate conversion
OSMscale-package Add a Scalebar to OpenStreetMap Plots
biketrack GPS recorded bike track
randomPoints Distanced random points
scaleBar scalebar for OSM plots
earthDist distance between lat-long coordinates
equidistPoints Evenly spaced points along path
triangleArea Area of a triangle
maxEarthDist maximum distance between set of points
pointsMap Get map for lat-long points
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Last month downloads


Date 2017-04-12
URL https://github.com/brry/OSMscale
License GPL (>= 2)
Encoding UTF-8
RoxygenNote 6.0.1
NeedsCompilation no
Packaged 2017-04-12 12:57:19 UTC; boessenkool
Repository CRAN
Date/Publication 2017-04-12 13:34:22 UTC

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