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About StreetMap North America data

Release 9.3
Last modified April 24, 2009
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Note: This topic was updated for 9.3.1.

StreetMap North America is a dataset in Smart Data Compression (SDC) format that provides streets display, routing, and geocoding for the United States and Canada. It contains 2003 TeleAtlas streets that were enhanced by ESRI and TeleAtlas, and prepared for routing within the StreetMap Find Route dialog. StreetMap North America data is provided in the ESRI Data & Maps Media Kit on the ESRI Data & Maps and StreetMap North America DVD. To use the entire StreetMap North America dataset for display in ArcMap, open the StreetMap North America map document (.mxd), which can be found in the \streetmap_na folder.

More recent streets data for the United States, Canada, and Europe are available with the StreetMap Premium products. For more information, visit and select Data under the Products tab.

StreetMap North America map document

The StreetMap North America map document (.mxd) is an integrated interactive map display that serves as a general purpose basemap for performing routing, geocoding, and cartographic display of the StreetMap North America data. The .mxd supports seamless ad hoc panning and zooming from the full North America extent down to the detailed streets level. It displays various road categories, such as interstate highways and local roads, and other features including state boundaries, lakes, landmarks, and airports.

The StreetMap North America table of contents is mainly organized into thematic group layers such as Roads, Water, Landmarks, and so on. Then within each thematic group, the data layers are organized according to their usable scale range. Typically there are three or four scale-dependent datasets within each thematic group layer, for example interstates, highways, and local streets. These layers provide feature density, level of generalization, symbolization, and labeling for each scale range. For convenience, these scale ranges are given names that indicate the level at which they are displayed.

This thematic approach to layer organization allows all the layers of the same type to be contained within a single group layer. The thematic group layers can be easily expanded to show the various datasets arranged by display scale. This permits an entire thematic group to be turned on or off with a single click. The scale-dependent layers within a thematic group can also be individually turned on and off. For example, you can turn off the entire Landmarks group layer or just turn off the Major Cities layer.

Dynamic label placement is used throughout the entire StreetMap North America.mxd. The labeling is scale dependent and based on size or importance. A label flag field has been added to many layers to improve labeling options. For some layers, label classes have been defined but are not turned on.

The streets data has been presorted to draw the road classes in the correct order for cartographic display. The ArcGIS 9 Layer Drawing Option (LDO) has been implemented for a number of individual layers. These include city points, landmark points, and streets. The data frame-based Advance Drawing Option (ADO) is not utilized for the StreetMap North America.mxd. If you want to use the ADO to alter the cartographic appearance, you can access this command by right-clicking in the data frame or on the data frame name in the table of contents.

You can zoom to any area of the StreetMap North America map document and convert the compressed street data into other types of feature classes, such as shapefiles, personal geodatabases, or file geodatabases.

Learn more about converting StreetMap North America data into other feature classes

Using the StreetMap North America map document

The StreetMap North America dataset provides an ArcMap document (StreetMap North America.mxd) that contains the StreetMap North America group layer for routing and geocoding. If you open the StreetMap North America.mxd file with ArcMap, you'll see the StreetMap North America layers in the table of contents. It contains many different layers (i.e. Major Cities, Major Roads, State - Province Boundaries) within the major group layers (i.e. City Points, Roads, Administrative Units). The StreetMap North America layers provide different levels of detail at different scales.

The StreetMap North America layers are defined with default scales that display the appropriate types of features. When the StreetMap North America.mxd is opened or the StreetMap North America group layer file is added in ArcMap, a map of the United States is displayed. The map shows the state boundaries, interstate highways, major cities, and major water bodies. You can click an area or drag a box on the map using the Zoom In tool. ArcMap displays a map of the specified area and draws the default set of features.

Zooming in on the map or changing the view scale changes the map content if it reaches a different level of detail. For example, at the local level, ArcMap will draw the city map with more details including local streets, highways, urban areas, and airports. Default colors, symbols, and label fonts will be applied to the features accordingly.
Learn more about moving around the map
Learn more about displaying layers at specified scales

You can change the settings, add new layers, or remove layers. You can also save the settings into a layer file. The StreetMap North America.lyr file, which you can add to any other map document, is provided on the ESRI Data & Maps and StreetMap North America DVD.

Learn more about adding or removing layers
Learn more about saving a layer to disk

Group layers can be turned on or off in the table of contents to increase or decrease the feature content of the map display. Entire thematic group layers or the scale-dependent layers within each group layer can be turned on or off to modify the map display. Labeling can also be turned on or off for each layer.

You can also use ArcCatalog to view the StreetMap layers. Choose the StreetMap North America.lyr file from the DVD and click the Preview tab. Use the Zoom In and Zoom Out tools to display different layers of the map.

Using the StreetMap North America routing service

The StreetMap North America dataset includes a routing service that you can use with the StreetMap Find Route dialog box to find routes within the United States. To use the service, at the top of the Options tab on the Find Route dialog box, browse to the file, located in the \streetmap_na\data folder on the ESRI Data & Maps and StreetMap North America DVD.

Learn more about finding a route

Using the StreetMap North America address locators for geocoding with ArcGIS 9 Desktop and ArcView

The StreetMap North America dataset provides several address locators you can use right away for geocoding addresses in North America. When you use ArcCatalog or ArcMap for geocoding, you can browse for the StreetMap North America address locators, which are in the \streetmap_na\data folder on the ESRI Data & Maps and StreetMap North America DVD. For detailed information about the different locators, please see the StreetMap_NA_Locators.txt file located in the same folder.

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