[Tagging] Public buildings

johnw johnw at mac.com
Sun Jan 10 07:58:49 UTC 2016

> On Jan 10, 2016, at 2:24 PM, Warin <61sundowner at gmail.com> wrote:
> To me an office building could be used for any administrative work.
> Government department sections here change locations - the education department human resources can move to another location ... even swap with another section.
> So the building and its land use remains the same. If the office key is used then that can indicate the change.. except that office=government sub key government is severely limited...

Warin, some examples to illustrate my issue. The first examples are tagging regular stuff: All of this is “how I understand it”-


Building A-13 at the riverside housing complex:

pin: not needed

Building: building=apartments ref=a-13 / name=a-13  

Landuse: Landuse=residential name=Riverside Apartments


Lawyer’s office in a large downtown “professional” complex, East building:

pin: Law Office (however that pin is tagged) 

Building: building=office ref=East / name=East

complex Landuse: Commercial name=Big Professional Complex


Shop in a shopping Mall, South Building:

Pin: [normal shop pin tagging]

Building: building=retail name=South

complex Landuse:  landuse=retail shop=mall name=Big Giant Mall


Big Car Parts Factory Building #4

Pin: not needed

Building: building=industrial ref=4 / name=4

complex landuse: landuse=industrial name=Big Car Plant


Okay. easy stuff, right?

Now, an Immigration office in a "central government" branch building run by the Department Of Justice in Japan:


pin: [no good approved tagging method] Name=Tokyo Immigration Center, Takasaki City branch Office (paraphrased the really long official names)

Building: Building=civic

Complex Landuse: [no good approved tagging method] Name= D.O.J. Takasaki Branch Building

See the problem? trying to tag Governmental complexes is broken because the related function tagging and landuse tags were never finished. 

There is no decent Immigration office, as office=government is a garbage tag. This is a office for Visa approval and renewal for residents - not an immigration checkpoint on a road or train station. All basic government offices should be in some sort of top level tag, as it is not a commercial office. And a governmental immigration office is WAY more important than any office tag ever created.

Also, landuse=commercial is 100% wrong.  There is no commerce! this is Civic/governemnt/whatever, not retail nor commercial. This building includes a prisoner transfer station, as it is a DOJ building. So there is a prison/jail pin in there somewhere too. This is not an commercial office park. 

The other twist is that many buildings have dedicated functions - the DMV building, a Pension Building, a tax building, like a fire station or a police house.

Whatever method we can use to create a pin to put on a building=civic, we can also apply to the whole building when the need arises. 

This means that when we have a mix (parliamentary buildings, a big office complex, and a police HQ **on one named landuse** it can be on a single, properly labeled landuse=civic that matches. This becomes doubly helpful when other stuff (community halls, etc) also sit on the same *named* landuse. 

I wish people would realize that leaving governmental stuff out in the cold to have pieces added to other tagging schemes bit by bit until it is acattered all over makes for a plainly inferior map, does not follow OSM practices with other complexes / types,  and creates mapper confusion and the creation of undocumented tags, especially in places with a lot of government offices and building complexes. 


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