how can I find items to show/hide when zooming?

Hello everybody,
I want to realize a printed map on scale 1:500.000 using the OSM base, I’ve been looking for a while on the internet to find out where is the field that let me understand what items to hide/show from my map (e.g. I only need main roads and hide/delete local road, pedestrian etc…), can somebody help me?

How are you attempting to “print the map”? Are you using prerendered tiles or are you rendering them yourself? If the latter (you would have to do it this way): What software are you using for this?

There are many hints about your aim at

please do a keyword search there for: print map paper … render own style … or similar.

Tell us when you have trouble in any concrete answer there.

sorry, I really forget to tell, I’m working with ArcGis and the result will be a printed map, I will render everything myself in ArcGis, I can’t work using prerendered tiles.


Use GDAL for converting OSM data into shapefiles and continue from those with ArcGIS. Read cafefully
Edit the osmconf.ini file so that you will get those attributes which you need for doing the classification with ArcGIS. Once the file is edited the command to use is either
ogr2ogr -f “ESRI Shapefile” osmshapes input.pbf

  • creates directory “osmshapes” with five shapefiles in it or
    ogr2ogr -f “ESRI Shapefile” osmlines.shp input.pbf lines
  • creates shapefile osmlines.shp with all the lines from OSM data

You can do whatever you want with advanced ogr2ogr options, for example you can select all lines with some highway tag as

ogr2ogr -f “ESRI Shapefile” highways.shp -sql “select * from lines where highway is not null” input.pbf

thanks for the link, I’m searching on it but I can’t find the attribute to show/hide elements at various scale

thanks JRA, that procedure looks great and easy, now my only problem is to find the attribute to show/hide elements at various scale

You do not need to use attributes for that. If you want to do it in a simple way, create main roads layer, minor roads layer and so on and set the scale range for the visibility in the ArcMAP layer control.

is it possible to know the “layers” used by the osm website to set the range of visibility? it could help to quickly replicate the same settings locally.

Download and try to replicate it quickly.
Seriously, you will see that the file has 4069 lines. Quickly replicate takes days or weeks but not hours.

Great, it was what I needed, of course my “quickly” was “quicker than starting from scratch” :smiley:
Thanks, now I think I have the elements to start working on it.