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Towns No Longer Appearing in Shape Map

Hi Everyone, 


I think this is an issue with Bing Maps, but it has created a lot of problems for us.


Back in March when our Power BI reports were last published, we listed data in different towns by concatening the town name with the state: e.g. "Townname, Vermont". This field was categorized as a "Place", and this resulted in a fullly filled map of a given state. 


This was working until recently, when a large number of towns stopped being displayed in their full geographic region. 



The image below shows that towns like East Montpelier, Plainfield, Marshfield, and Worcester are not appearing as their full geographic region, but only as the "downtown" area. 



Searing on the internet, we see that Google Maps is producing the correct geographic region and Bing Maps is not. Below are examples for East Montpelier.


Google - East Montpelier (Correct geographic region)


Bing - East Montpelier (Incorrect geographic region)



So this is why I say it seems like this is an issue with Bing Maps. 


I have attempted to report problems by clicking the "Feedback" button on Bing maps, but that was nearly two weeks ago. If this ISN'T a Bing maps problem, then please let me know if there's a way to solve it. I have tried recategorizing the "Townname, Vermont" field to a "City" but that doesn't work. I need the towns to occupy their actual geographic areas. 


Thanks for any help on this. 





Status: New
Community Support
Frequent Visitor

Hi Folks,

I was able to work around this issue by uploading a custom Shape map. I recommend this, as now my reports look cleaner than before.


You can find instructions on this video:


In short:

  1. If you can, find a map from open data portal from an agency in your region. In my case, our state has an Open Data portal where town-level data are easily available. Download the Shape File (which is actually multiple files all downloaded into the same zip file). Also download the Spreadsheet version of the data.
  2. Upload the (.dbf, .shx, .shp, .prj) shape files into And then change the dimensions if necessary (following the instructions here: Export the map as a JSON file.
  3. In Power BI, create a shape map, put some kind of data into it (this is the only way that you have the option of uploading your own map) and then go to the format tab and click “Shape” and upload your JSON data file. Make sure the names of your locations correspond exactly to what’s in the map. This is where the Spreadsheet version of the location data can also come in handy. Also make sure that your data includes identifier geocodes that Power BI can use to link your regions to the JSON data.

Power BI should pick up the relationships automatically if you do this.


Here's the final version below. Good luck! Vt Tax Rates.JPG