[Tagging] works_as_highway=primary

Martin Koppenhoefer dieterdreist at gmail.com
Wed Jul 29 15:01:22 UTC 2015

sent from a phone

> Am 29.07.2015 um 15:08 schrieb Andrew Guertin <andrew.guertin at uvm.edu>:
> I think that this breaks a router's idea that primary is "better" than secondary, and I think that this problem is exactly why people advocate for not following official classification.

I believe the term "official classification" is often mistaken or at least not thoroughly looked at. Often there is more than one official classification: visible and obvious is the maintaining entity, e.g. the country, state or municipality level, but what is not so well known and not visible easily is the conceptual level/class of connection roads (importance of connection) which together with the estimated traffic intensity and available funds and topographical setting and political processes determine the actual road that will be built (or enhanced).

E.g. in Germany the official classification that  most people are aware of is
Bundesstraße (nationwide network)
Landesstraße (state maintained network)
Kreisstraße (Landkreis maintained network, slightly bigger than municipality)

But if you look at the planning guidelines and  standards you will see much more different types, e.g here: 

there are 
~categories (A-E, inside or outside of settlements, with or without adjacent buildings)

~levels of connection functions (I - VI, what does the road connect)

The result of the combination of these 2 groups is the road class (e.g. B III), in theory 30 different classes, but not all combinations make sense.

This is admittedly only the German situation but my guess is that many other countries operate in a similar way (i.e. do have more complex road classes internally than what is visible from signposted ref).


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