How to search for, customise and obtain New Zealand land and seabed data from the LINZ Data Service.
Find out how to use LINZ Data Service (LDS) and get the information you need from it.
The video explains how to search, access, customise and download data.
View the video on how to get started with LDS.
You do not need to sign in or register.
Search, browse or scroll for the data you want using either:
- The left hand panel of the screen – hit the browse data button or scroll through the thumbnails displaying ‘featured’, ‘latest’ and ‘categories’ options. Or you can type keywords into the search box to the right of the LINZ logo.
- The right hand panel of the screen featuring a map of New Zealand – type in addresses or place names in the search box over the map. You will see location options. Click on the option you want. The map will jump to that location.
- To search for a specific dataset table or map, use its name, keywords or location.
- To search for a term that is a string of words, put the whole term in quotes, e.g. “Bay of Plenty”.
Navigate around the map
- Click and drag your mouse cursor to pan the map left, right, up and down.
- Pan right, left, up and down with the arrow keys.
Different ways to zoom in and out
- Click on the magnifying glass icon, then click the mouse button
- Hold the shift key, click the left mouse button and draw a zoom in rectangle on the map, then release the shift key and the left mouse.
- Use the plus (+) and minus (-) keys on your keyboard
- Use the scroll wheel on your mouse
- Double left-click to zoom in (Ctrl + double-click for Mac users).
- Pan wider with the Home, End, Page Up and Page Down, keys.
Create a shortcut link to a map view
The 'link' icon next to the search button creates a shortened URL to a map view or a feature.
- Add the datasets.
- Zoom in or search for an address.
- Crop a section (if you wish).
- Click on the link icon next to the ‘Help’ button.
- A pop up box appears called ‘Link to this map’.
- Grab the shortened link and use as required.
We provide data in three types, vector, raster and tabular.
Vector data relates to position and has one or more coordinates. There are three kinds of vector data :
- polygons: data made up of a closed sequence of lines, shapes, that represent areas like lakes, patches of native bush, parcel boundaries
- lines: data that represents linear features, like roads, rivers and railway lines
- points: data that represents discrete features where each point has an X and Y (and sometimes a Z) location. Railway stations, historic sites and geodetic marks are some examples.
Raster data represents surfaces, like imagery and maps.
Our raster data:
- is geo-referenced e.g. we divide our maps into cells and give each cell a coordinate so that we can determine its location
Tabular or aspatial data is data in a table format that does not relate to position.
Metadata is information about the data that includes:
- the dataset title
- the geographic coverage
- the creator and their contact details.
Other information about our data you can view
- Data Table: available for vector and raster data only. Scroll through a table of the raw data. Use the ‘Search in data’ tool to search for specific attributes.
- Tiles Table: available for raster data only. Enables you to download individual raster tiles in it’s native format.
- History: a record of all revisions and changes to the dataset.
- Services: URLs for accessing data through web services.
- Comments: a place for you to provide feedback on a specific dataset.
To view the attribute data, click inside a polygon or on a point or line on the map. The data of the feature appears in a new window.
To create your own map view, add datasets to the map of New Zealand in the right-hand panel of the screen e.g. add a roads dataset to a property titles dataset for the particular area you want to see.
Working with datasets
Add a dataset:
- Find the dataset you want.
- Click the orange ‘plus’ button under the dataset title.
- The dataset appears on the map for you to view, zoom or query.
Remove a dataset:
- Select the dataset and click the red ‘minus’ button or
- Use the ‘Selected items’ feature on the top menu bar above the map.
If you do not crop the dataset, you will receive the whole dataset when you download.
Cropping reduces the size of your download by limiting the data to the selected area. The smaller set of datasets is quicker to download and share.
Note: Tabular datasets cannot be cropped.
To crop, click the ‘Crop’ button next to ‘Selected items’. Choose ‘Box Crop’ or ‘Region Crop’.
Use box crop to perform a rectangular crop.
- Place your cursor on the required area.
- Click and hold down your mouse button.
- Drag out a box to cover the area you want.
- Release the mouse button
- A black outlined box will show the area you are cropping to.
To cancel the box crop, click on the ‘Crop’ button again or the ‘Redrawn’ crop link in the crop window.
Use region crop to clip and download any dataset by geographical area.
- Choose the area breakdown from the ‘Region type’ drop down menu:
- Regional Council boundary
- Topo50 map sheet
- Topo250 map sheet
- General Electorate boundary
- Māori Electorate boundary
- Territorial Authority boundary
- Choose your selected area from the ‘Region’ drop down menu.
- A drawn border shows the region you have selected.
Note: The crop you see marked on the screen is a simplified display. The file you download will be cropped to the exact area – full geometry – of the region.
Find out about the types, origin and best-fit uses of data available through the LINZ Data Service.
Origins of LINZ data
The data published on LDS is the same data used by LINZ in our day-to-day business. Most of it is published in a very similar form to that stored and used in our own systems.
This means we, in some instances, also publish multiple datasets with similar looking names, but from different sources and with very different purposes.
e.g. NZ Road Centrelines (Topo, 1:250k), NZ Roads (Addressing), and NZ Primary Road Parcels.
Information about LINZ data
The metadata attached to each dataset provides comprehensive information about the data. This covers data purpose and source, lineage, currency, completeness and accuracy.
The original purpose of our data can affect the way it should best be used. For example, the purpose of the data in the NZ Road Centrelines (Topo, 1:50k) layer (like all LINZ topographic vector data) is to provide the raw information that is used in the production of our Topo map products, specifically our printed paper maps. This means the data has been designed for readability on a map and so could safely be used in a mapping application, however it is not suitable for route planning where extra information like speed limits and turn restrictions are important.
Source is the system or database the data comes from. It can impact the format and coordinate system of the data published on LDS.
For example, data in the property ownership and boundaries category on LDS is published in UTF-8 format as this is required by the source Landonline database to allow for the entry of special characters, such as macrons in Māori place names.
Lineage is the data life-cycle, the origins of the data, processes applied to it and changes over time. Lineage can be helpful to understanding aspects of data completeness, quality and accuracy.
For example, for many years, information about property boundaries was stored in paper survey plans, searchable via a series of index maps of the individual land parcels. These index maps were digitised in the late 1980’s, with accuracy only as good as the original scale paper maps. This is why some parcels have poorer levels of accuracy.
A similar digitisation process took place for title (ownership) records, where only the ‘current’ record was digitised. This is why LDS does not contain the majority of the historic title information, i.e. those records that were historic prior to the time of digitisation (about 2001).
Datasets are updated at different intervals. Currency is important for data that changes frequently, such as data about the transfer of property ownership (titles).
Property ownership and boundaries and street address data is published on LDS weekly, topographic data every 2-3 months and hydrographic data only every 6 months. Each layer on LDS displays a last updated date under the About tab.
Some datasets published on LDS are incomplete or do not have national coverage. Sometimes this incompleteness is historical (e.g. data was not captured at the time), or it is simply not required for the purpose of the dataset.
For example, the NZ Fence Centrelines (Topo, 1:50k) dataset only contains data for a selection of fences, enough to indicate general land use on the printed Topo50 mapsheets.
Accuracy is impacted by factors like system or technology constraints, changes over time to data collection, and standards and regulations.
For example, the level of accuracy needed for Topo50 data, used for making paper maps, is different than for survey boundary data used for property rights and restrictions.
Accuracy can also vary within a dataset. For example, due to density of urban areas and data improvements, property boundary data, such as the NZ Primary Parcels layer, is more precise in urban than rural areas. The NZ Survey Boundary Marks layer provides further information on parcel accuracy.
Where to find more comprehensive information
Resources for better understanding LINZ data:
- Read the summary description for the dataset under the About tab on LDS
e.g. NZ Contours (Topo, 1:50k) – this summary includes information on data accuracy and links to additional resources
- Read the metadata for a dataset on LDS, especially the lineage statement
e.g. NZ Property Titles metadata
- For high level descriptive information about the data we publish through LDS
View the Data section on the LDS website
- View a sample of the data via the Data Table tab on LDS
e.g. NZ Place Names (NZGB) data table
- Where available, familiarise yourself with the data dictionary for the dataset you’re interested in:
You need to register with LDS to download data.
Download your data
You can download data up to a size of 15GB. If your file is larger, you need:
- to order courier delivery of the data or
- crop the data to download only the area you’re interested in (rather than downloading the whole dataset)
- select fewer datasets at one time.
- Sign in
Enter your username – your email address – and the password you provided when registering.
- Begin the download process
Click the ‘Download or Order’ button on the top menu bar above the map.
Step 3: Choose a download format
In the new window showing format and projection you have a choice of download formats. These are our recommendations.
|Vector GIS||Esri File Geodatabase, Esri shapefile, MapInfo TAB format, GeoPackage/SQLite or CSV / WKT format|
|Raster GIS||GeoTIFF or JPEG format|
|Google Earth||KML format|
|Graphic design / print||PDF format|
Step 4: Choose a projection
Projections are tools that adjust data to account for the distortions that occur when translating from a curved surface – the globe – to a flat perspective – a map.
|Property and topographic data||Transverse Mercator 2000 (NZTM)|
|Hydrographic data||World Geodetic System (WGS84)|
|Data spanning New Zealand’s Mainland and Offshore Islands||New Zealand Geodetic Datum (NZGD2000)|
Find out more about projections.
Step 5: Activate the download
Click the ‘Accept terms and create download’ button. LDS will begin creating your download file. This file will be a zip file containing:
- the data you requested,
- metadata records,
- any related documents and
- a contents file summarising your order along with a copy of the licence or agreement setting out the terms and conditions under which the data can be used.
To download the file hit the green highlighted button. Open or save the file, then unzip it.
Downloading will take a few minutes.
Save data for future download
- Chose the data you want.
- Click the icon next to the Help menu to create a URL to your data.
- Save this URL to use later.
Want to stop your download?
Click on the ‘Stop’ icon next to the download progress bar.
We can courier your data to you if:
- you want to avoid maxing out your data cap from your internet provider
- your download file size is over our 15GB limit.
Couriering data is charged on a base fee + media type + estimated data size + delivery country basis.
Courier delivery service
Koordinates Ltd manages all aspects of the courier delivery service on our behalf.
Visit Koordinates’ support website for further information and contact details
We provide most LDS datasets under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license. This means you
- must credit LINZ
- can use, reuse and share the data as much as you like in any service, product or application.
The personal datasets, e.g. datasets that provide information on the owner of a property title, have a customised licence. Once you accept the customized licence, you can access the personal data.