[Tagging] [Talk-us] Trunk VS primary,

Paul Johnson baloo at ursamundi.org
Sat Dec 21 00:44:44 UTC 2019

On Fri, Dec 20, 2019 at 1:07 AM Mateusz Konieczny <matkoniecz at tutanota.com>

> 20 Dec 2019, 01:25 by baloo at ursamundi.org:
> So, for example, in the US, instead of motorway, trunk, primary,
> secondary, tertiary, perhaps something more like freeway, expressway,
> major/minor_principal (just having this would fix a *lot* of problems with
> Texas and Missouri and their extensive secondary systems),
> major/minor_collector...the US just has a way more complex view of how
> highways work.
> Or at least some more serious consideration given to the proposal at
> https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/User:UltimateRiff/HFCS (but perhaps
> with "other principal arterials" as primary and a new "highway=quartinary".
> Fitting thing like road classification
> into UK system is irritating at times.
> But idea of each country with separate tags
> for roads is simply a bad idea.

Could you expand on this?  Being able to speak each country's highway
lingua franca would make it a lot easier for OSM to become the Rosetta
Stone of maps simply from ease of classification.

> This info is probably worth recording,
> but legal status should go into a separate tag.

Legal status of roads in the US isn't quite as clearcut as it is in the UK,
where the highway=* tag is literally equal to that country's legal
classification, plus private roads with significant public passage and/or
reach.  Off the top of my head we have 1 country, 2 states, 34 tribes, 77
counties and 597 towns, plus MacQuarie Group Australia running the
turnpikes and the Boy Scouts of America, Phillips 66, ConocoPhillips, or
some combination of the three, and potentially scores more private
entities, operating extensive networks of publicly accessible roads and
highways in Oklahoma.  And I generally consider myself lucky I have it
*this* straightforward in the US.

Texas likely has similar situations but throw in the fact that they have 7
different state highway systems before you get into at least 3 more
(regional? state? private? unclear...) competing turnpike networks,
sometimes running side by side on the same right of way (consider TX 121
with the George Bush Turnpike operated by the North Texas Transportation
Agency running down the median).

Simply starting with the HFCS and expanding from that (particularly on the
freeway/expressway distinction, and having more levels between secondary
and unclassified) would be a fantastic boon to dealing with this mess in a
more concise fashion as it changes highway=* tagging from almost entirely
subjective to subjective but within a limited range.  Establish wiki pages
describing how each region works and let the consumers sort it out from

At an absolute minimum, we really need to establish values lower than
tertiary yet above unclassified, and we definitely do need to make the
freeway/expressway distinction.
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