Partner: Smarter city searches with what3words and City of Ulaanbaatar

Whether you’re looking for local health facilities, maintaining a row of street lights, or trying to find a government building in the City of Ulaanbaatar, your first port of call should be manaikhoroo.mn, the city’s own public service map. As part of Mongolia’s nationwide integration of what3words, residents can now search the map via a 3 word address, making finding what they were looking for a whole lot easier.

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Mapping the capital

The Mongolian city of Ulaanbaatar is a vibrant and bustling urban centre, with all the buildings and services you’d expect from a nation’s capital. Ulaanbaatar is also highly progressive, focusing on improving the lives of its citizens by embracing new technologies that can transform it into a smart city.

To help locate specific amenities, the government maintains an online map, which is freely available for residents to use. The map, at manaikhoroo.mn, translates as “My Place”, and holds a range of useful data – from the location of hospitals and clinics to refuse collection services, water points, leisure facilities, museums, parks and government offices.

Addressing the problem

Whilst the map contains accurate and detailed information, finding a specific building or service can still be a challenge. With so few street names in the city, especially in the Ger districts, it’s difficult to actually locate places.

Without a defined addressing system, map users are unable to search by a street name or postal code. And once they step out into the real world, the only realistic way to find where they need to go is via unreliable landmark-based descriptions – “past the school that used to be there, third on the right, before the crossroads”.

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Search and discover in 3 words

As part of the integration of 3 word addresses, the Manaikhoroo map has now added what3words to their search functionality. what3words has divided the world up into global grid of 3m x 3m squares and assigned each one a unique 3 word address. It means every city asset, utility point and place of interest can now be identified by its 3 word address.

Residents can use the map to locate a particular municipal service, simply by entering its 3 word address into the search bar. They can also use the map to discover the 3 word address of a specific government building. And once they’re out in Ulaanbaatar, they can use the free what3words app to identify the precise location of that building in the city.

Learn more about using 3 word addresses in national infrastructure