OpenStreetMap

Wrong tags on Path

Posted by bottleny on 19 February 2014 in English (English)

Many mountain hiking trails in Taiwan are tagged with "Foot Path" (Tag:highway=footway), instead of using "Path" with "sac_scale=hiking".

Comment from Richard on 19 February 2014 at 09:39

That is not wrong. highway=footway simply means "a path which is primarily intended for walking". You can use it with sac_scale=hiking if you like, or indeed a surface= tag.

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Comment from bottleny on 19 February 2014 at 11:06

Well, in the Wiki, it said "Use the highway=footway tag for mapping minor paths used mainly or exclusively by pedestrians." Therefore, I thought it might be more appropriate to use "Path" + "sac_scale=hiking" for mountain hiking trails. I'm new to OSM editing, so I'm not sure which tagging is better.

http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:highway%3Dfootway http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:highway%3Dpath

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Comment from SK53 on 19 February 2014 at 12:15

It's best to stay what is used stylistically locally, and from what you say in Taiwan, this is highway=footway.

Many of us believe that highway=path tends to be far too ambiguous and requires much more elaborate tagging than simply using highway=footway, with, for instance sac_scale=*. Whereas highway=path tells us nothing about the typical traffic it copes with. Others use highway=path for paths in the countryside, not in the town; and others still use it in a way analogous to highway=road (i.e., its been mapped by aerial survey and it may be a footpath a track or even just an animal track).

Of course it is possible to infer that a highway tagged with sac_scale is suitable for walking (or scrambling at the high end of the scale), but footway makes this absolutely clear, that it is a route predominantly for pedestrians.

If you know the paths, it is certainly useful to add sac_scale (especially on those sections of paths which are not straightforward sac_scale=hiking).

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Comment from bottleny on 19 February 2014 at 12:36

This entry ( http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:sac_scale ) said: highway=footway In most cases footways are designated by footway traffic signs. Please do not use the footway tag for mountain hiking trail

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Comment from Richard on 19 February 2014 at 19:22

As usual the wiki is full of nonsense! There is absolutely no reason you shouldn't use highway=footway for a mountain trail.

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Comment from JohnDoe23 on 19 February 2014 at 23:33

It depends on the country how the tag is used. In Germany for example highway=footway is only used for official designated footways which have a sign like this: http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/w/images/a/ab/SAM_0158.jpg Even for mountain trails. Mountain trails can be specified with http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:sac_scale

When you can do mountain biking it is no highway=footway

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