Using QGIS 2.16.1 I have a line and a point shapefile. The line was made by using "points to route". The points have timestamps, in this case showing the direction of travel. I want to create a new point layer (not just labels...) perpendicular on the direction of travel. The practical point is to record the side of placing waste bins. If you are interested in the case: http://maasmission.wordpress.com

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The points should only be placed on the right side (with an offset) of the direction of travel.

  • Do you need the actual point geometries, or could it be just a drawing effect? Which rule (regular intervals?) do you want to use?
    – underdark
    Commented Sep 4, 2016 at 8:59
  • Infinite number of points meet your criteria. The story is not full.
    – FelixIP
    Commented Sep 4, 2016 at 18:28

2 Answers 2


There's a couple of plugins which might be useful:

  • Line Offset

    1. Select the line features you are interested in for your layer and click the plugin icon to open up the settings:

      Line feature

      Line offset

    2. When you run it, a memory layer will be created with the offset line (note that it may not like tile basemap layers so these will need to be removed before running the plugin):

      Result of line offset

  • Locate points along lines

    1. You can then convert the offset lines to points and add intervals:

      Locate points along lines

    2. Result:


Each plugin can be downloaded from the menubar:

Plugins > Manage and Install Plugins...

If you actually wanted to offset the points from the centerline though the answer provided would not be exact. As the distance on the offsetted line would not be the same, particularly on long runs.

There is a new plugin available from the "experimental" plugin that will allow you to offset your point feature to the nearest perpendicular point on a line.

The plugin is called "Closest Points" (with a space)

The process would be the following

  1. Create your offset line from your centerline at the desired distance (use "Offset lines" from QGIS toolbox)
  2. Use "Find all closest points for each feature" from vector dropdown
  3. Choose your point layer and the offset Alignment and hit run
  4. Perfect Offsets should now exist see screen shot below Offsetted Points

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