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Ordnance Survey announces direct API access to location data for public sector


As part of the Geospatial Commission’s Public Sector Geospatial Agreement, over 5,500 public sector organizations will now have direct and immediate access to Ordnance Survey‘s most detailed and trusted location data via a suite of APIs which will transform how geospatial data is used to support government policy and underpin public services.

Free at the point of use, the APIs are available via the OS Data Hub and provide a new way to access the most up-to-date OS data. The APIs will make it quicker and easier for users to work with OS data by connecting directly to a range of datasets as well as supplying the latest product updates on demand.

The APIs will help save time and resources allowing users to focus on using the accurate geospatial data to underpin decisions, gain insight, support public services, and drive innovation. One significant benefit is a reduction in data management overheads removing the need to spend time downloading and managing data.

Chris Chambers, Head of the Public Sector Geospatial Agreement at OS, said, “Over the last 10 months we have seen location data play an important role in supporting the public sector’s response to Covid-19. The pandemic has highlighted how vital it is that high-quality geospatial data is easily and quickly accessible to all users.

The APIs let users access the data they need when they need it. They deliver quick and easy access to detailed OS data and have been designed to save users’ valuable time. By using the APIs it means that OS is handling the complexities of spatial data management, allowing users to focus on creating even greater value from the data.”

The APIs provide access to a range of OS datasets including OS MasterMap, road network data, addressing information, 1:25 000 leisure mapping, as well as unlimited free access to OS OpenData products.

Chris added, “The OS Places API, for example, is a great tool to help users improve the accuracy of their address searches. It’s ideal for use in geocoding, automated form-filling, and local area investigations. In addition, the APIs allow multiple geospatial data sets to be explored and linked together.

The APIs provide a new way for people to access and work with OS data, and we are looking forward to working closely with our customers to ensure that OS data continues to support them.”

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