Homegrown Business: Map Town – Canada’s largest map store

Map Town is such an exciting store for those who love maps. From globes, to children’ animated maps to professional maps like aeronautical and oil and gas fields and wells this place has it all. They also have a great selection of books, travel brands and accessories. There have so many cool things for sale that we had to feature them on our website to learn more.

Map Town Map
Map showing the location of Map Town.

What is your business called and what does it do?

Map Town is Canada’s largest map store, and was established in 1989. We sell World wall maps, travel guides and maps, hiking books maps, topographic maps for all of Canada and the USA, globes, nautical and aeronautical maps, GPS data and much more. We have retail, online and wholesale operations.

What made you want to do this work?

I’ve been making maps since graduating from the University of Calgary in 1994. Purchasing the store from the original owner in 2011 was a perfect fit for my skill sets.

What problem does this solve?

Maps make you spatially aware. We help people who want to know about their destination be it travelling, exploring, hiking, hunting. flying, sailing, working, and for those looking for a unique gift.

Who are your clientele/demographics?

Our target market is predominantly 25 to 60, middle class and located all over North America. We literally have sold to 99% of the Postal codes and zips in North America.

Kids Map Map Town Calgary
Kids map showing animals of the world.

How does your business make money? How does it work?

The demand for paper maps and products will never cease to exist. Although the technologies we all carry are great in their own way, they are no replacement for a tangible product. That is why we exist. Our clients appreciate that and come to us as a result.

Where in Calgary can we find your profession?

There are literally hundreds, perhaps thousands, of us in the Calgary area. Basically, anyone who works with data and maps. Look for people with the these titles in their title: GIS, Mapping, ESRI, Geomatics, Survey, LiDAR, Remote Sensing, Geological, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and more.

What is the best question a prospective customer could ask a member of your profession when comparing services?

Why should we use your services? Think experience, data, ability to customize the product for the client and so on.

What is the best part about what you do? What is the worst part?

I love being a business owner. You make the business what you want, you get to employ people give back to the community in countless ways and feel a sense of pride and accomplishment. The worst part is that you are always thinking about your business, from how can I take it to the next level, to what can we do to expand, to how can we incorporate the latest technology and WOW! products into our lineup.Don’t forget that as a small business owner you will wear many hats, some of which you will not necessarily enjoy.

What are your favourite jokes about your own profession?

Do people still need paper maps? It only takes you a few seconds to create a map, right?

PAY IT FORWARD: What is another Calgary business that you love?

Kent of Inglewood.



For more information on Map Town, and to browse their inventory, check out their website.