Reverse geocode

Learn how to find an address near a location with the geocoding service.

Reverse geocoding is the process of converting a location to an address or place. To reverse geocode, you use the Geocoding service and the reverseGeocode operation. This operation requires an initial location and returns an address with attributes such as place name and location.

In this tutorial, you use the reverseGeocode method of ArcGIS REST JS to reverse geocode and find the closest address to your clicked location on the map.

Prerequisites

You need an ArcGIS Developer or ArcGIS Online account to access the developer dashboard and create an API key.

Steps

Create a new pen

  1. To get started, either complete the Display a map tutorial or .

Set the API key

To access location services, you need an API key or OAuth 2.0 access token. To learn how to create and scope your key, visit the Create an API key tutorial.

  1. Go to your dashboard to get an API key. The API key must be scoped to access the services used in this tutorial.

  2. In CodePen, update apiKey to use your key.

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    const apiKey = "YOUR_API_KEY";
    const basemapEnum = "ArcGIS:Streets";
    const map = new maplibregl.Map({
      container: "map", // the id of the div element
      style: `https://basemaps-api.arcgis.com/arcgis/rest/services/styles/${basemapEnum}?type=style&token=${apiKey}`,
      zoom: 12, // starting zoom
      center: [-118.805, 34.027] // starting location [longitude, latitude]
    });

Add references to ArcGIS REST JS

This tutorial uses ArcGIS REST JS for reverse geocoding.

  1. In the <head> element, add references to the ArcGIS REST JS library.
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  <head>
    <meta charset="utf-8" />
    <meta name="viewport" content="initial-scale=1,maximum-scale=1,user-scalable=no" />
    <script src=https://unpkg.com/maplibre-gl@2.1.9/dist/maplibre-gl.js></script>
    <link href=https://unpkg.com/maplibre-gl@2.1.9/dist/maplibre-gl.css rel="stylesheet" />

    <script src="https://unpkg.com/@esri/arcgis-rest-request@4.0.0/dist/bundled/request.umd.js"></script>
    <script src="https://unpkg.com/@esri/arcgis-rest-geocoding@4.0.0/dist/bundled/geocoding.umd.js"></script>
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Update the map

A navigation basemap layer is typically used in geocoding and routing applications. Update the basemap layer to use ArcGIS:Navigation.

  1. Update the basemap and the map initialization to center on location [2.3522,48.8566], Paris.

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      <script>
    
        const apiKey = "YOUR_API_KEY";
    
        const basemapEnum = "ArcGIS:Navigation";
    
        const map = new maplibregl.Map({
          container: "map",
          style: `https://basemaps-api.arcgis.com/arcgis/rest/services/styles/${basemapEnum}?type=style&token=${apiKey}`,
          zoom: 12,
    
          center: [2.3522, 48.8566] // Paris
    
        });
    
      </script>
    
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Add a click event handler

Before you call the Geocoding service, you need to get a location from the user. You can add a handler to the Map's click event. The click handler will be called with an object containing parameters such as lngLat.

The lngLat property is a LngLat. It has lng and lat properties and a toArray method which returns an array in [longitude, latitude] order.

  1. After the map initialization code, add a handler for the click event. Create a coordinates array from the lngLat property of the event parameter.

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      <script>
    
        const apiKey = "YOUR_API_KEY";
    
        const basemapEnum = "ArcGIS:Navigation";
    
        const map = new maplibregl.Map({
          container: "map",
          style: `https://basemaps-api.arcgis.com/arcgis/rest/services/styles/${basemapEnum}?type=style&token=${apiKey}`,
          zoom: 12,
    
          center: [2.3522, 48.8566] // Paris
    
        });
    
        map.on("click", (e) => {
          const coords = e.lngLat.toArray();
    
        });
    
      </script>
    
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Call the service

Use the ArcGIS REST JS reverseGeocode method to find an address closest to a point.

  1. Inside the click handler, create a new arcgisRest.ApiKeyManager to access the geocoding service. Call the arcgisRest.reverseGeocode method with the coordinates array.

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        map.on("click", (e) => {
          const coords = e.lngLat.toArray();
    
          const authentication = arcgisRest.ApiKeyManager.fromKey(apiKey);
    
          arcgisRest
            .reverseGeocode(coords, {
              authentication
            })
            .then((result) => {
    
        });
    
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Display the result

The response from the reverseGeocode operation contains two properties. address is a structured object with fields such as street name and business name. location contains the location of the returned address, which may differ from the coordinates you provided.

Use the results to display a pop-up with the address and location values.

  1. Convert the result.location object into an array of [longitude, latitude].

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          arcgisRest
            .reverseGeocode(coords, {
              authentication
            })
            .then((result) => {
    
              const lngLat = [result.location.x, result.location.y];
    
    
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  2. Set a variable containing the text you want to display, using the address and coordinates.

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              const lngLat = [result.location.x, result.location.y];
    
              const label = `${result.address.LongLabel}<br>${lngLat[0].toLocaleString()}, ${lngLat[1].toLocaleString()}`;
    
            })
    
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  3. Add a pop-up to display the label at the returned coordinates.

    To add a pop-up to the map, you use the Popup class in MapLibre GL JS. See the Display a pop-up tutorial for more information.

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              const lngLat = [result.location.x, result.location.y];
    
              const label = `${result.address.LongLabel}<br>${lngLat[0].toLocaleString()}, ${lngLat[1].toLocaleString()}`;
    
              new maplibregl.Popup().setLngLat(lngLat).setHTML(label).addTo(map);
    
            })
    
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Handle errors

To handle errors that occur when accessing the Geocoding service, such as networking or API key issues, use an error handler to show a message to the user.

  1. Add a handler to catch any exception and display a message to the user.

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          const authentication = arcgisRest.ApiKeyManager.fromKey(apiKey);
    
          arcgisRest
            .reverseGeocode(coords, {
              authentication
            })
            .then((result) => {
    
              const lngLat = [result.location.x, result.location.y];
    
              const label = `${result.address.LongLabel}<br>${lngLat[0].toLocaleString()}, ${lngLat[1].toLocaleString()}`;
    
              new maplibregl.Popup().setLngLat(lngLat).setHTML(label).addTo(map);
    
            })
    
            .catch((error) => {
              alert("There was a problem using the reverse geocode service. See the console for details.");
              console.error(error);
            });
    
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Run the app

In CodePen, run your code to display the map.

Click on the map to reverse geocode the clicked point and display a pop-up with the closest address and coordinates.

What's next?

Learn how to use additional ArcGIS location services in these tutorials:

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