[Tagging] Proposal: expanded address tags for US

Steven Johnson sejohnson8 at gmail.com
Wed Nov 21 03:08:07 GMT 2012

Thanks for all the constructive, if skeptical responses. I can't respond to
each of them individually, but I'll try to respond to the most pointed
comments here.

Bill R Washburn (dygituljunky) asked:
>> "Would you be opposed to just splitting off the directional prefixes and
suffixes, thereby leaving the road type and
>> name prefix combined with the name? I think, to me, that it's important
to leave the information that uniquely identified the road together. >> In
my never-humble opinion, only splitting out the directional would balance
my concern for keeping the name as complete as possible
>> and splitting out the information which is, contextually, secondary

In short, yes. I'm less concerned with a dedicated prefix for things like
"The" and "Old". And as Serge asked, "Will individuals contribute data in
this new, proposed format?" Phil! Gold expressed a similar sentiment, as
well as echoing Bill R Washburn's sentiments:

>> I do think there's a use case for directional prefixes that are not
>> strictly part of the road name, but are instead for addressing.  Many
>> parts of the US have roads with addresses of the form "10 North Something
>> Street" where the road signs emphasize "Something Street" and the "North"
>> or "South" parts are less visible.

On the tagging list, Clay Smalley offered the example of a "West Third
Street" and "East Third Street" and suggested that they were easily
distinguished as separate streets. However, in most jurisdictions the
"West" and "East" are not considered part of the street name. The local
jurisdictions use "West" and "East" simply to designate whether the street
segment proceeds to the west or east of some arbitrary dividing street. The
street is named and indexed locally as: "Third". So why would we include
directionals in addr:street rather than treating them as directional
prefixes (or suffixes)?

It's even more problematic for cities that use the Lyman, or coordinate,
system of street naming. User kevina has put together some excellent
guidance for Salt Lake City on why/where to include directionals in cities
using this system (e.g. Seattle, Portland, Salt Lake City, & others). I
take exception to some of kevina's criteria for directional
prefixes/suffixes, but in generally I think the proposal shows when and
where directionals make good sense:
For those of you who asked how adding directionals removes ambiguity,
please see the examples from Salt Lake City, e.g.  "East 200 South".

Thanks again to everyone who weighed in so far. Interested in hearing more
given what I've posted here. Cheers,

-- SEJ
-- twitter: @geomantic
-- skype: sejohnson8

"Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen." --
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