[geos-devel] Port of PostGIS ST_Subdivide to GEOS / downstream libraries

Daniel Baston dbaston at gmail.com
Fri Nov 13 08:54:26 PST 2020

Hi Brendan,

I don't remember it being discussed anywhere, but it's certainly been
floating around in my head for a while. I think it's very much worth


On Fri, Nov 13, 2020 at 11:41 AM Brendan Ward <bcward at astutespruce.com>

> I would like to expose functionality similar to ST_Subdivide (
> https://postgis.net/docs/ST_Subdivide.html) in pygeos (ref:
> https://github.com/pygeos/pygeos/issues/244), which provides a Python
> interface to GEOS.
> The algorithm recursively subdivides input geometries along alternating x
> vs y dimensions until a target number of vertices per geometry is
> reached, which can greatly improve spatial index performance for complex
> polygons (e.g., countries with coastlines).  Paul has written a very nice
> overview of it here: http://blog.cleverelephant.ca/2019/11/subdivide.html
> Apologies if this has already been raised here; I was unable to find any
> record of such a discussion in Github, Trac, mailing list archives.
> I did not find a counterpart in JTS, so perhaps this is out of scope for
> While we can take this on in a downstream library (and indeed may want to
> pilot there first), this seems like it would have broader appeal to the
> GEOS community if exposed via the C API.  There may also be potential
> performance improvements to leveraging aspects of something like STRtree to
> help identify x or y subdivision points (ideas not yet well developed
> though).
> Is there any interest in providing something similar within GEOS?  If so,
> perhaps the next stage is to log this as a feature request to Trac.  I
> anticipated the need for a little discussion around this topic, so I'm
> raising here first.
> Thanks,
> --
> Brendan C. Ward
> Owner | Lead Software Engineer
> Astute Spruce, LLC
> astutespruce.com
> 541-250-9544
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