Now that there is a tool to convert an MXD to Tilemill, one must then wonder if the ability to open QGIS documents in Tilemill will ever exist.

  • I would guess there will not be a direct project open. What we probably will see at some point is the ability to export a layer style as CartoCSS, much like you can already export an SLD. That's the labor intensive part anyhow.
    – Scro
    Commented Nov 15, 2012 at 22:41
  • 1
    If they can do it with all the complexities that come along with Arc, you can bet it can be done for QGIS. It would be great to see something similar Very impressive video demonstrating the power of Arc2Earth Sync. Commented Nov 30, 2012 at 7:05
  • Not an an answer here, but having a utility to quickly stub out CartoCSS from QGIS would be a big help and would lower the bar for casual users who really want the power of Tilemill but can't rapidly spit out CSS yet. Something a little more mature than this. github.com/yuletide/QGISTileMillExport
    – br8k
    Commented Dec 4, 2012 at 16:26

4 Answers 4


This somewhat exists - here's a page of the various converters available. Exporting CartoCSS from other tools requires both mangling the native format and normalizing differences between how they treat data & the capabilities of the renderer.


Definitely open to adding more features/functionality to my QGISTileMillExport plugin (as well as adding it to one of the plugin repos for easier installation once it's a bit more mature). I stubbed it out as a proof of concept for my own use a few months ago.

As for workflow, I saw it as a way to bridge between data/rough styling in QGIS and final presentation work in TileMill, as well as allowing me access to QGIS' more advanced binning and gradient tools (which I figure TileMill will eventually incorporate in some form).

Feel free to mess around with it and submit questions/comments/bugs/requests over on the issue tracker

Also, pull requests welcome! :D


There is a plugin for QGIS 1.9 called QTiles. It's development was announced Dec 2012 on the QGIS Developer forum.

QTiles designed to generate raster tiles from QGIS projects according to the Slippy Map specification [0] and supports two output types: directory and ZIP-archive.

I'm not sure if this works directly with TileMill, but it looks like a good start.


There is also my QGIS -> Mapnik XML plugin at https://github.com/springmeyer/quantumnik. I wrote this before CartoCSS existed, and I've been planning on updating it to output CartoCSS by leveraging https://github.com/rundel/carto-generator. If anyone else is interested in this approach get in touch by creating an issue at https://github.com/springmeyer/quantumnik/issues/7

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