[Tagging] what is the meaning of bicycle=yes on highway=path

Volker Schmidt voschix at gmail.com
Sat Apr 13 15:42:31 UTC 2019

I am not happy with the assumption that a path on the map without
indication that it is open to the public is better than not having it on
the map at all.
This is only true if the former is labelled as such (access=unknown).
Otherwise its useless information. Think about it: You wouldn't think for a
moment about inserting a road (for cars) without knowing it is open for the
intended traffic, would you?
I am frequently using routing for bicycle and, unfortunately, I note that
there are many more access status errors on paths/footways/tracks in the
map than for roads for motorized traffic.
If we as OSM community want to make use of our potentially better coverage
for foot and bicycle traffic, then we need to improve our mapping quality
for minor highways.

Another thing:
Greg writes:
" "highway=footway" has exactly the same
semantics as "highway=path foot=designated". ...Note that both leave
bicycle and horse as
I think this is wrong: highway=footway excludes bicycle, or at least the
footway wiki page is misleading, as the photo shows clearly a footway with
a traffic sign, that explicitly excludes all other types of traffic.


On Fri, 12 Apr 2019 at 18:41, Greg Troxel <gdt at lexort.com> wrote:

> Richard Fairhurst <richard at systemed.net> writes:
> > Volker Schmidt wrote:
> >> "highway=path" implies "bicycle=yes" (in most jurisdictions) - see the
> >> proposed Default-Access-Restriction for all countries
> >
> > That's not a default that I feel enormously comfortable with. Whatever
> the
> > wiki might say, "bare" highway=path (no other tags) is often used for
> little
> > footpaths across city parks, sidewalks, and so on.
> >
> > cycle.travel errs on the side of caution and therefore doesn't route
> along
> > highway=path unless there's an explicit access tag (or cycle route
> > relation).
> >
> > Keeping bicycle=yes on bikes-allowed paths is useful information. If
> there's
> > no bicycle= tag, yes, it could mean "bike access is implied by a default
> > somewhere on the wiki" but it could also mean "this way is tagged
> > incompletely". Deleting the tags would remove information and make it
> harder
> > for routers to deliver real-world routing results. Please keep them.
> Strongly seconded.  Richard has it 100% right here, and has explained it
> very well.  I would consider removing bicycle=yes from highway=path to
> be damaging and antisocial.
> As far as path having some legal definition of access rules, I would say
> that's very far off base in the US, as paths are usually on places where
> the property owner (even if the government) can set rules, as opposed to
> streets which are owned by the government where access is controlled by
> statute, more or less.  It is very normal for paths in conservation land
> in the forest to allow only foot travel, or also bicycle, or also horse
> and bicycle both.
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