[Tagging] Subtag for place=locality?

Christoph Hormann osm at imagico.de
Tue Apr 16 09:30:55 UTC 2019

On Tuesday 16 April 2019, Mark Wagner wrote:
> There's a "place=locality" near me called "Seven Mile Airstrip". 
> Now, that's an interesting choice of names for the place, because
> there's no evidence that it was ever used for aviation.  The best
> guess I've seen for where the name came from is that it was intended
> as an auxiliary runway for Spokane Army Air Depot during World War
> II, and after construction was canceled, the name stuck around.
> What tag would you recommend for "thing people believe is the
> abandoned construction site for a runway that was never built"?

The crux about about abandoned:* is that it is usually only verifiable 
as long as physical remains are present.  I don't know this particular 
situation but it looks like that is not the case here.  The question 
you need to ask yourself is what the name currently refers to and tag 
accordingly.  Is it the name of a section of a road ("drive east along 
Seven Mile Airstrip"), the name of a neighborhood or parts of it ("i 
live in Seven Mile Airstrip"), the name of some kind of common area 
("lets have a barbecue tonight at Seven Mile Airstrip"), some patch of 
wilderness ("i went hunting yesterday and shot a rabbit at Seven Mile 
Airstrip").  If you can clearly give the named feature some kind of 
classification of what it is that could also apply to other similar 
places with different name elsewhere you should use or create a tag 
indicating that.  Only if that is not the case you might use the 
generic place=locality - but only if it is actually a verifiably 
locatable place and not just a name you have heard from your 
grandfather to apply to a place around here somewhere but you can't 
really specifiy what it refers to now.

If you look into the database you can find place=locality being used for 
a lot of very different things most of which you could clearly classify 
more precisely.  A tag like place=locality will likely always exist in 
OSM - even if this one is deprecated an alternative would be invented.  
But it should be used as sparsely as possible to make the data as 
meaningful as possible.

Christoph Hormann

More information about the Tagging mailing list