[Tagging] Pre-RFC: shop=mall versus shop=shopping_centre

Jerry Clough - OSM sk53_osm at yahoo.co.uk
Tue Oct 21 13:39:29 UTC 2014

A few points:

	* OSM standard is British English. Shopping Centre is standard British English for an enclosed pedestrian space with lots of shops. Historically these have been covered, but this is changing to a simulated street environment (in UK Liverpool One the Arc at Bury St Edmunds are recent examples.
	* Use of the shop tag is inherently problematic. These are not shops but retail areas. At the moment whenever I do any kind of retail analytical query I have to do AND NOT IN (shop='mall'). I would prefer to use landuse=retail with retail=mall or retail=shopping centre etc. We certainly don't tag a centre of a village with a few shops as shop=village_centre.
	* shop=mall is more widely used, and although predominantly US English is not likely to be a confusion which shopping centre obviously is from prior posts here. Some of the examples cited would be usually called "Retail Park" for what I think is typically called a strip mall in the US, and "Shopping Precinct" for a smaller pedestrian area, often with only minor weather protection for shoppers. The latter are dying on their feet in the UK as they cant compete with the "Retail Park" or have a poor selection of shops.
	* I attempted to provide a fairly detailed typology of these various types of retail area in a blog post last summer (hopefully with some useful illustrations). However I think this could be expanded substantially especially with more examples from different countries. See also the typology used by a specialist Retail GIS Analytics company which features at the start of the blog. Some (largely those featuring the word Parade) may be very UK specific, but most are suitably general. There are also a couple of slides relating to the issue in my SotM-Baltics presentation (#10 in particular).
	* I noticed whilst attending SotM-Baltics last summer that true shopping centres/malls are very common in the main towns in Latvia and Estonia. Presumably they are a favoured way of adding new retail premises. Unfortunately many of these have 3 or more shopping floors and are even harder to map than 2 storey malls.
	* The two main shopping centres in Nottingham have had all the retail outlets mapped. There are many issues as to the best way to map shopping centres/malls but it is clear that if one wants to be accurate about the provision of shops in a town it is essential that this is done. They are also difficult to map because most establishments are access=customers and do not allow photography. 
	* I mapped an area E of Pittsburgh, PA which has a nice variety of different kinds of out-of-town retail areas (a mall, Monroeville Mall, several strip malls, smaller areas, numerous car dealers). Unfortunately we don't have active mappers in the area. If anyone can identify a similar location in the US where there are active mappers and useful pictures this would really help sort out the kind of typology we need.
I did start drafting a blog post on this very issue mentioning many of the points above, so it's probably time to finish it.



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On Tuesday, 21 October 2014, 12:22, Martin Koppenhoefer <dieterdreist at gmail.com> wrote:

To me analyzing the given examples it seems as if a mall was necessarily a closed place while a shopping center would/could have outdoor connectivity. They appear to be similar as they both have several independent shops and collective facilities like toilets and parking. Maybe a mall has to have restaurants and other eating facilities, while a shopping center doesn't have to (but could have). I think small sets of shops with collective parking won't qualify as "mall" but they might constitute a shopping center.

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