Newbie question: Can you filter OSM data by year?

I have barely started learning about the world of OSM and JOSM and all those other programs, so sorry if this is a stupid question.

I know that OSM data is updated in real-time by hundreds of users. XAPI I know does not deal with historical or deleted records.

I am trying to map the spatial and temporal variation of public space interventions for my masters thesis.

OSM looks good, but the point of the project is temporal and spatial variation (in Portugal for years 1995 to 2024). Can I filter OSM data based on year, or is there even yearly data archived somewhere?


Not really, OSM isn’t very well suited for that as its goal is to have an up-to-date map. This does mean you can look up recent history using snapshots (e.g. an older release of planet.osm but because it consists of older states of the map, it also includes missing and inaccurate data besides what truly changed in the recent past.

For truly historical stuff, I recommend the spin-off OpenHistoricalMap instead where historical / “out-of-date” information are preserved (including when they existed and when they ceased to exist) but AFAIK isn’t as active as OSM alongside being newer so it also isn’t as detailed as OSM proper.


I will explore that option, thank you so much!

A terça, 9/07/2024, 21:17, Manuel B. via OpenStreetMap Community Forum <> escreveu:

OSM records the editing history so you can extract OSM data for any
point in time since the project was created in 2004, however this will
not be “how the world looked at the time” but “what OSM knew about the
world at the time”.

For example, OSM has 1.8 million buildings in Portugal today, and if you
extract data for 2010 it’s probably going to be just a few hundred, but
that does not mean that 1.8 million buildings have been built in
Portugal in the last 15 years, it only means that these existing
buildings were slowly added to OSM.

Such “old” data can be extracted from the “full history planet” using
the “osmium” command line tool.

Starting 2014 you can also download old Portugal data files from
Geofabrik e.g.

or even shape files