New Google Maps URLs – Street View Options

In this post we will examine the easily settable options available for Street View. There aren’t very many.


First, let’s take a look at a minimalist example of a Street View URL (i.e., leaving out everything that Maps can fill in for itself). This example shows the fountain in Pittsburgh’s Point State Park as seen from North Shore Drive:

https://www.google.com/maps/@40.445351,-80.013387,3a,75y,172.24h,90t/data=!3m1!1e1

The data element !1e1 under !3m# is what specifies Street View (as opposed to Map View, Satellite View, or Photo View). The meaning of the camera settings ,3a,75y,172.24h,90t# can be found back in the Map Positioning post, but to review: 3a is a fixed setting; #y is the focus or zoom factor (15 is max zoom in, 90 is max zoom out); #h is the compass direction with North = 0, East = 90; and #t is the camera angle with 0 = straight down, 180 = straight up, and 90 = horizontal.

If your URL also includes a place:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Pittsburgh+International+Airport/@40.445351,-80.013387,3a,75y,172.24h,90t/data=!3m1!1e1

The place will control the photos and additional street views available at the bottom of the screen; however, it will not affect what is displayed in Street View, or the map that is shown when you exit (which will be centered on the location of the Street View). This holds true even if you do something ridiculous like set your “place” in California but your camera in New York City.

If you attempt to specify a place without a MAP_POSITION:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Pittsburgh+International+Airport/data=!3m1!1e1

Maps will probably go to Street View but display a black screen; you will have to exit Street View or click one of the photos at the bottom of the screen to get a map or view.

If the MAP_POSITION is not on a Street View spot, Maps will select the closest available Street View if it’s not too far away (my testing suggests a maximum distance of about 150 feet). If there is no Street View position within range, Maps will display a black screen.

If you specify a MAP_POSITION which uses zoom instead of camera settings, Maps will normally reset it to focus 15y, direction 0 (North), angle 90 (horizontal).


Return to New Google Maps URLs introduction

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3 Responses to New Google Maps URLs – Street View Options

  1. Eric Peabody says:

    Thanks for this post. I am not having to much luck though. I am trying to get driving directions departing at 8 am on a Monday so I can check the typical drive time at that time in the morning. So I came up with this based on your post: /data=!4m2!4m1!3e0!4e1!5i0!2m2!6e0!7e2!8j1446451200. Any idea where I went wrong? Thanks!

    • mstickles says:

      Eric – your time calculation is perfect and the individual elements are right, the problem is with the enclosure counts. If we split out your data section:

      /data=!4m2!4m1!3e0!4e1!5i0!2m2!6e0!7e2!8j1446451200

      becomes:

      /data=
      !4m2
      + !4m1
      | – !3e0
      | – !4e1
      | – !5i0
      | + !2m2
      | | – !6e0
      | | – !7e2
      | | – !8j1446451200

      So, the first “!4m#” tag is actually enclosing 8 elements, not 2; the second is enclosing 7, and the later “!2m#” is enclosing 3. Changing it accordingly to:

      /data=!4m8!4m7!3e0!4e1!5i0!2m3!6e0!7e2!8j1446451200

      should work properly (it did in my testing).

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