The original purpose of addresses was to enable the correct and unambiguous delivery of postal mail. The advent of computers and more specifically geographic information systems (GIS) opened up a whole new range of possibilities for the use of addresses, such as routing and vehicle navigation, spatial demographic analysis, geo-marketing, and service placement and delivery. Such functionality requires a database which can store and access spatial data effectively. In this paper we present address databases and justify the need for national address databases. We describe models used for national address databases, and present our evaluation framework for an address database at a national level within the context of a spatial data infrastructure (SDI). The models of data harvesting, federated databases and data grids are analyzed and evaluated according to our novel framework, and we show that the data grid model has some unique features that make it attractive for a national address database in an environment where centralized control and/or coordination is difficult or undesirable.