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When you name a place or road, you’ll have to choose a language, name, and type of name. Make sure you use the name of a place or road as it's known in the real world.

Choose a language

When adding a name, choose a language and capitalize the first letter of each word. Make sure to follow the customs of the language.

Set latin script for transliterated names

To write local names in the Latin alphabet, select the version of the language with "(Latin)" at the end. For example, "Moscow" is an English translated name, but you would select Russian (Latin) to add "Moskva."

Use multiple names for a place

If a place is known by more than one name, you can enter all of the names. All names will be searchable on the map.

To enter a name, click Add more names. To delete a name, click Delete Delete.

If a road is known by more than one name, you can enter all of the names:

  • To add a name to a part of an existing road, use the Select Road Segments tool.
  • To add a name to an entire road, use the Edit option .

Choose a name type

You can have different types of names for a place or road. Select the correct type so that the most appropriate name is displayed on Maps.

Place name types


The name of the place entered in the common language for the region the feature is located in.


The most commonly recognized name and best name for a feature. While adding more than one name to a feature, make sure to have one primary name per language.


The formal name or name officially recognized by the government.


Informal nicknames, historic or colloquial names that don’t appear on street signs and may not be well-known outside the local area.

  • Don’t use an obscure name as the only name.
  • Obscure names can be given to historical names if:
  • The historical name applies to a single current feature. The extent (boundary) of the current feature may be changed. Examples:
    • Incorrect: Czechoslovakia (as its divided into 2 separate countries: Slovakia & Czech Republic)
    • Correct: Calcutta (New name: Kolkata), Zaire (New name: Congo)
  • Historical route names should be added as type "obscure" to the route which best represents its historical location and extent.
  • If multiple current routes represent the extent of the historic route, the historical name should be added as type "obscure" to each of the current routes.
  • If the extent of the historic route cannot be represented accurately by current route(s), don’t add the historical route.

Well-known acronyms of a place or commonly recognized short names. Terms such as "Road", "Lane" or "Avenue" should not be abbreviated. Most roads do not have this type.

Road name types

Numbered highway

Route numbers such as: "A1" or "US-55" and so on.

Note: Frontage roads also known as access roads, service roads or parallel roads should not have the same type as a numbered highway.

Bicycle route

Route number for bicycle paths (if any) such as "U.S. Bicycle Route 76".

Best practices

  • While adding names in different languages, do not translate names. Instead, use the transliterated version.
  • While adding names in different languages, establish the default language for entering data in the Settings menu.
  • Wait until the feature has been renamed in real life to change it on the map.
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