[Tagging] works_as_highway=primary

Ralph Aytoun ralph.aytoun at ntlworld.com
Wed Jul 29 10:24:01 UTC 2015

Hi Pavel,
First let me say that I am totally against the idea of “silly tags” such as works_as_highway=primary. This just indicates a lack of understanding of the real situation.

I have looked at your problem and understand what you are seeing. I will give you examples in the Czech Republic as that appears to be the area of concern.
My case example is the D1 from Praha all the way to the border with Poland. 
http://www.rsd.cz/rsd/rsd.nsf/0/80345976071FCBACC12575CF004E133E/$file/RSD2009cz.pdf (Page 23)
You will see that the D1 is incomplete from before Prerov to Ostrava. The cross-border European road network (E462) has chosen the D1 onto R46 onto R35 then back onto D1 as their choice of Primary Route.
http://www.rsd.cz/rsd/rsd.nsf/0/80345976071FCBACC12575CF004E133E/$file/RSD2009en.pdf (Page 7)
which shows that a Primary route does not necessarily mean it follows the route numbering of a country.

You can also see from here that the Primary route bypasses Brno to the south and does not actually go through Brno and many countries countries have adopted this routing to avoid congestion and thus delays along their primary routes so Primary routes do not always take you into your destination city, town, village or hamlet.

Where a Primary route is “incomplete” it does not mean that the road just drops off into a deep hole. The lesser roads are the Primary route and were the Primary route before the new planned routes came into existence ... irrespective of the alpha-numeric numbers allocated to them now just because they are not motorways or dual carriageways.

So you are dealing with a multi-layered numbering system with EU on top of National on top of Local. The OSM classification irons out all those inconsistencies into a single understandable continuity and should show a continuous primary route along a route that changes from an international to a National to a Local or dual carriageway to two way hard top to a two way unsurfaced and in some countries down to a single lane unsurfaced road. It would be impossible to render all roads according to their National numbering, type of road and state of surface but we can tag them accordingly.

From: Pavel Zbytovský 
Sent: Tuesday, July 28, 2015 10:02 AM
To: tagging at openstreetmap.org 
Subject: [Tagging] works_as_highway=primary


we have a following issue at mapy.cz (zooms cca <13 are OSM data). We try to render primary road overview in Czech republic, so the drivers could easily see where its possible to drive. But sometimes the primary road ends and continues as a secondary road - it could be in cites, or possibly temporary detour. (see links below)

Is there any recommended solution already availible? Otherwise we have two solutions to discuss.
1) technically the small secondary roads part works as primary road network. So we would suggest a tag similar to works_as_highway=primary. Do you think its ok? Any suggestions?

2) less preferable solution would be to add render specific tag. Something like low_zoom_as_higway=primary.

Thanks for reply,
Pavel Zbytovský

[1] http://www.mapy.cz/s/hf6Y
[2] http://www.mapy.cz/s/k35L

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