Google Street Maps Overlay for Google Earth

Google Maps overlay of Sydney in Google EarthUpon reviewing the GEB archives it appears I missed writing about this one even though I’ve used it for over a year. The same guy who implemented Globe Glider (a useful Windows application for integrating mapping tools with GE), ‘BernhardMuc’ at the GEC, also released another handy tool. Bernhard posted a way to view Google Maps street maps as transparent images seamlessly overlayed automatically in Google Earth. As you change your view, it reloads a proper zoom level of Google Maps. One example of why this network link is useful is to view detailed map data for countries like Australia and New Zealand which have great roads data in Google Maps, but the data hasn’t been ported to GE yet. The maps also show things like parks, lakes, rivers, and tourist sites as well. I think this is a handy thing worth keeping in your “My Places” and turning on when you need a map-like perspective, but still in 3D. (Tip: you can adjust the transparency by changing the parameter in the network link from &TRANS=80 to 100 – no transparency, 0 – fully transparent)

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. That’s wonderful! Thanks for pointing it out!

  2. smokeonit says:

    so there is a way to bring in GM data into GE!!! 😉

  3. Frank, how soon we’ll see such layer directly in GE?

  4. Michael O'Neill says:

    Just noticed that street directions are now available in Google Earth for Sydney Australia. I guess the real road maps can’t be far away.

  5. Just to let everyone know, Australian maps are now available in Google Earth. Living in Melbourne, I have waited a very long time for this and to see it happen is just fantastic.

  6. i like to see the suburbs of sydney from the air

  7. It doesn’t seem to be working anymore. Is there an alternative solution available to see Google Maps within Google Earth (on the 3D globe and not inside the browser window)?

  8. Bobbie Narramore says:

    How do I view Google Earth like a street map (with streets, without houses & vegetation).
    Thank you,
    Bobbie Narramore

  9. de link in de overlays is not working anymore, probably google changed the address over time. is there any change it will work again?

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