Generative Street Addresses from Satellite Imagery

ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information

By: Ilke Demir, Forest Hughes, Aman Raj, Kaunil Dhruv, Suryanarayana Murthy Muddala, Sanyam Garg, Barrett Doo, Ramesh Raskar


We describe our automatic generative algorithm to create street addresses from satellite images by learning and labeling roads, regions, and address cells. Currently, 75% of the world’s roads lack adequate street addressing systems. Recent geocoding initiatives tend to convert pure latitude and longitude information into a memorable form for unknown areas. However, settlements are identified by streets, and such addressing schemes are not coherent with the road topology. Instead, we propose a generative address design that maps the globe in accordance with streets. Our algorithm starts with extracting roads from satellite imagery by utilizing deep learning. Then, it uniquely labels the regions, roads, and structures using some graph- and proximity-based algorithms. We also extend our addressing scheme to (i) cover inaccessible areas following similar design principles; (ii) be inclusive and flexible for changes on the ground; and (iii) lead as a pioneer for a unified street-based global geodatabase. We present our results on an example of a developed city and multiple undeveloped cities. We also compare productivity on the basis of current ad hoc and new complete addresses. We conclude by contrasting our generative addresses to current industrial and open solutions.