Google My Maps

With Google’s My Maps you can create your own customized maps using tools that include adding photos, descriptive text, place marks, lines, shapes, and more. Maps are easily shared by ‘inviting collaborators’. To use Google’s My Maps you need a Google account; creating an account takes less than a minute as you may use your existing email address regardless of provider.  The account is necessary so Google can keep track of which maps are yours.

Creating your own map using My Maps takes a few minutes – we know, its unreal – and provides not only agencies with useful tools, but the general public as well. Plan your next road trip, upload a video, share your maps with friends or other agencies, and even highlight your favorite places.

Google provides tutorials on My Maps and other map-making software on their Outreach page.

Or follow our step-by-step instructions:

Creating a map using Google Maps

  1. Go to Google Maps.  (Internet Explorer recommended.)
  2. Click ‘Sign In’ in the upper right.
  3. If you do not have an account – create one now. (pretty simple process)
  4. Click ‘My Places’ in the panel to the left of the map display.
    (if that panel is not visible you make it visible by clicking the right arrow in the upper left corner of the page)
  5. Click ‘Create Map’.
  6. Enter an appropriate Title and Description.
  7. Make sure the map is Public.
  8. In the upper left corner of the map display there are three new buttons.  These allow you to create a new Placemark (point), line or area (shape) feature as well as edit the features you’ve created in your map.  An example of this edit button (the hand) is it may be used to move existing Placemarks to new locations.
  9. Your work is ‘auto’ saved every so often but the ‘save’ button can be used if you need to take a break, etc.
  10. When you are finished click ‘Done’.
  11. Then click ‘Collaborate’.
  12. Type in email addresses to share your map.  As noted in the invite window, separate emails with a comma.  ‘Collaborators’ will receive an email with a link to your map.
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