The goal of zonebuilder is to break up large geographic regions such as cities into manageable zones. Zoning systems are important in many fields, including demographics, economy, health, and transport. The zones have standard configuration, which enabled comparability across cities. See its website at


Install it from GitHub with:

# install.packages("remotes")

Using zonebuilder

Zonebuilder builds on the sf package and works well with mapping packages such as ggplot2, leaflet, mapdeck, mapview and tmap, the last of which we’ll use in the following maps. Attaching the package provides the example datasets london_area and london_cent, the geographic boundary and the centre of London:

tm_shape(london_area) + tm_borders() + tm_shape(london_cent) + tm_dots("red")

The main function zb_zone breaks this geographical scale into zones. The default settings follow the ClockBoard configuration:

london_zones = zb_zone(london_cent, london_area)

The idea behind this zoning system is based on the following principles:

The package zonebuilder does not only create zoning systems based on the CloadBoard layout as illustrated below.

The function zb_zone makes use of zb_doughnut and zb_segment, which can also be used directly:

zb_plot(zb_doughnut(london_cent, london_area, n_circles = 5), title = "Doughnuts")
zb_plot(zb_segment(london_cent, n_segments = 20), title = "Segments")
zb_plot(zb_zone(london_cent, n_circles = 4, n_segments = 4), title = "4 segments, 4 circles")