Uploading Data


In addition to uploading data, MapHubs also supports linking to external data sources such as ArcGIS Online, Mapbox, or raster tile services. It you already have your data online and are not interested in using MapHubs data editing tools, then it may be easier to just link to your existing data.


  • Vector Data - MapHubs only supports uploading vector data (points/lines/polygons), other formats can be linked as map tiles

  • Supported File Types - Shapefile, GeoJSON, KML, GPX, CSV (with proper formatting), Geobuf, and MapHubs format

  • File Size: MapHubs supports data uploads up to around 50MB in size (zipped Shapefile). The exact requirements depends on the complexity of the data. Large vector data can be optimized to reduce complexity, split into regional datasets, or converted to vector tiles and linked into MapHubs

If you run into problems or need help uploading, please send us a message at support@maphubs.com

Before you Start

Before you can upload a layer you must first:

  1. create a group, or be invited to your organization's group (contact the owner and tell them your MapHubs username)

Step 1 - Create a New Layer

  1. Click the Explore menu, then Layers

  2. Click the red (+) button to add a new layer

  3. Choose the how you would like to create your layer

Upload a File

Choose the file to upload.

Upload the File

Click Browse or drag and drop the file into the upload box

After the file uploads a preview map of the data will show

Supported Types


Shapefiles must be zipped into a single .zip file (a Shapefile is actually a set of at least 6 files) If multiple shapefiles are found in the zip, you will be prompted to select one.


MapHubs supports all GeoJSON files.


Note: MapHubs does not yet support KMZ files, which are just zip files of one or moreKML files. You can usually rename a .kmz file to .zip, extract the zip, and then select the desired KML file contained within.


GPX files are normally provided by handheld GPS devices or GPS logging devices. MapHubs can import tracks or waypoints from GPX data.


CSV files need to be properly formatted to be recognized by MapHubs.

  • They must have lat, lon columns (or some known variation of Latitude and Longitude)

  • there can only be one set of lat, lon columns

  • every row must have valid lat, lon values

    • Must be WGS84 (GPS) coordinates, using U.S. number formatting (. for decimal)

  • The first row must be the column names

  • Column names cannot be empty

Geobuf (beta)

Geobuf is a highly compressed (small file size) format made from GeoJSON data. If you need to minimize upload bandwidth you can use open-source tools to convert your data into this format before uploading to MapHubs.


MapHubs files are specially wrapped geobuf files that include metadata from MapHubs about the layer in addition to the geospatial data. While the Upload tool supports this format, it will only load the geospatial data, see Import a MapHubs Export File below

Create a New Empty Point, Line, or Polygon Layer

You have the option of creating a new empty layer. You can then use the editing tools in the Map Maker to draw data into the layer, or for point layers, points can be created by uploading location-enabled photos (from smartphones or GPS-enabled cameras)

Note: Point layers can also be configured with a public data submission form, or offer a submission API, contact us for more info.

Import a MapHubs Layer Export File

Select MapHubs, then choose import

Select the group that will own this layers

Upload the MapHubs file

Click Go to Layer to view the layer

Note: you can also link to a remote layer from a public MapHubs site like https://mapforenvironment.org

MapHubs can also link to a range of external sources.

Step 3 - Set Layer Information

Set Name and Description

Enter a short descriptive name. This name will display in the map legend and elsewhere so it is best to keep it as short as possible. The name is also used when users search for layers, so you may wish to indicate the location/scope of the data, and if it changes frequently, the date.

Use the description field to provide additional information. If more space is needed, each layer has a Notes section that you can access after saving the layer.

Set Source and License

Set the source of the layer. This should be an abbreviated attribution. It will show in the legend whenever a layer is added to a map. You can include a longer description of the source in the layer description or in the layer notes after creating the layer.

Set the license of the layer. If the data is distributed under an open or public domain license please select the correct license here. If the licenses is unknown or isn't listed leave the setting as "Not Provided". We strongly encourage our users to investigate the license and select the correct license.

If the license is not listed or requires additional explanation, choose "Custom" and provide more information in the layer description.

Multilingual Support

You can enter layer information in MapHubs in multiple languages. It will automatically switch the preferred language of a user based on their computer and web browser preferences, and can also be changed manually at the top of the page (if enabled)

To enter information in a language, click on the language code above the text box. If no other languages are provided, the English option will be used by default. The supported languages at this time are English, French, Spanish, and Italian. Additional languages can be configured, please contact us at support@maphubs.com

Choose a Group

Finally, choose a group that will own this layer. Note: if you are only in one group it will be selected for you automatically.

Members of the group will be able to edit the layer information and layer data.

When you are finished entering the layer information, click next.

Step 3 - Choose Map Preview and Style

The map on the left is the preview map. It is used to generate the preview image show to users when they view your layer. Please pan/zoom the map to best show the data. On the right you can change the color of your layer, and add text labels.

Step 4 - Save

Finally click Save to save the map. The map will now be visible in the group and available to users to make maps. You will be automatically taken to the page for the layer.

To make changes to the layer information, map style, or to customize the data fields in the layer, go to the Manage Layer page (available in the menu from the layer's page)

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