[Tagging] defining service on railway=tram

Jarek Piórkowski jarek at piorkowski.ca
Sat Jan 19 20:48:15 UTC 2019


First time posting here, forgive if I've missed some rules.

Summary: I wanted to refine tagging of some tram/streetcar tracks to
show what they're used for, and found this isn't standardized and
isn't documented.

I would like to suggest updating wiki for Key:service to specify
recommendations for railway=tram:

1. no service tag recommended for tracks that are regularly used in
scheduled service, including loops and tail tracks
2. service=yard for tracks within and leading to tram storage and work
areas ("yards", "garages", "depots" - where trams are parked
overnight, maintained, light repairs)
3. service=siding for tracks not used for normally scheduled passenger
service (including diversion-only, emergency, non-revenue trackage, as
well as turn tracks not used in scheduled service)
4. service=crossover for crossover tracks (where dual-ended trams
change direction - only use between two main tracks with no service
tag - otherwise use service tag of the tracks that are connected)

Currently I suggest no change for railway=light_rail as they seem
substantially different and I have not checked on their tagging.


In Toronto we make a distinction for "non-revenue trackage" on the
streetcar/tram system. These are tram/streetcar tracks that are not
normally used for carrying fare-paying passengers in scheduled
service, but may be used for detours if needed due to construction or
accident. Currently most of these are not tagged specially. My first
instinct was to tag non-revenue as service=siding, but this doesn't
match the wiki definition. Bay Street is one such case:

Another example I'm familiar with is Alte Schönhauser Str. in Berlin,
where tracks were retained after a new tram route was built, and - as
I understand it - are used in special cases:

On-ground difference might be that standing street-side, on normal
track one might see a tram go by every 5 minutes, whereas on
non-revenue trackage at least hours and possibly days might go by
between trams. This might be particularly common in cities with larger
networks and "legacy" networks of interconnected lines. Similarly,
tracks leading to garages/yards would only be used by trams going into
and out of service with no passengers on board.

Apart from de-emphasizing less important lines when rendering, data
consumers might be interested in this information to avoid routing
vehicles near transport corridors (likely to be busier, have more
pedestrians), or to estimate length of active vs support track. Public
transit routers could use it to estimate route taken in absence of
path/shape information.

Currently this is not documented in
https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:service (only sections for
highways and heavy railways are included), seemingly in any of the
wiki languages. https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:railway%3Dtram
includes only "service=yard - if it is a sidings (sidings, tracks in
depots)" which seems to me unsatisfactory.

It appears osm-carto currently renders service=yard, service=spur, and
service=siding with a thinner line at zooms 16 to 18, and hides them
at zoom 15. service=crossover does not seem to get special rendering.

Actual tagging currently on the map varies - I've attempted an overview below.

Trams' service=yard seems currently used fairly widely for tram
garages/depots. This is not the same as railways' "yards" on the
English wiki page, but DE:Key:service does include it as
"Betriebswerken, Ausbesserungswerken usw" ("works/depots, repair
shops, etc").

My questions:
- are there other approaches used elsewhere that I've missed in the
overview below?
- any comments on the scheme suggested above please? in particular the
choice of service=siding or service=spur for non-revenue trackage
- any support for beginning use of tram-specific values, for example
service=loop, or service=non-revenue?

Overview of current tagging in cities I'm familiar with:
- Berlin, Alte Schönhauser Str. (described above):
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/153424801 has service=siding
- Berlin, S Adlershof loop (former terminus, as I understand it not
normally used) https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/139964269 has
- Berlin, Travestr. loop (used as terminus)
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/167791954 has service=yard
- Berlin, S Warschauer Str. tail track (used very frequently, by empty
streetcars) https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/11273262 has
- Berlin, Roederplatz, turn track not used in scheduled service
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/23913897 has service=yard
- Toronto, Earlscourt loop (scheduled for use but only for couple of
trips a day) https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/530112420 has
service=siding (and did so before my edit)
- Toronto, Vaughan Road track (only streetcars entering/exiting
service) https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/9406754 has service=spur
- Toronto, Bathurst Street track right next to the Vaughan Road one
and with same use https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/9406756 has no
service tag

Elsewhere - with the disclaimer that I'm not familiar enough with
those systems to know for sure if track is not in regular use:
- München: garage tagged as service=yard
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/39772979; track connecting to garage
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/134136316 has name=Betriebsstrecke
but no service; no special tagging found on loops or sidings
- Rostock: garage tagged as service=yard
- Warszawa: it appears there is generally no special tagging on loops,
I saw only one stray service=yard on one part of a loop at Marymont
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/132578934; yards/garages have
service=yard https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/35071413
- Poznań: i saw service=spur on a tail track and loop siding
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/79212680; on a (not normally used?)
loop: https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/411526161; service=yard on
garage access https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/169626913
- Melbourne: service=yard used in garages
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/514050081. Two of tail tracks I saw
(possibly non-revenue?) have service=siding
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/131710566 and
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/217908885, but most are not
specially tagged.
- Kyiv: I saw https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/169506761 with
service=yard but the nearby big garage (for example
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/474572333) has no tags
- Moskva: service=yard in garage
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/300291789; no special tagging
observed on loops and tail tracks
- Oran: I found service=spur in garage
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/369894648 but "main" tracks within
garage have no service
- Tunis: service=spur for tail track
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/613871674; service=siding for tail
track elsewhere https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/455682216; but this
seems to be a borderline "light metro" with tagging changing to light
rail e.g. https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/32843642; service=yard on
garage https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/100552956
- Casablanca has one garage tagged service=yard
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/633261819 but otherwise not much
- Ko-hiông: https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/501281475 service=yard in garage
- Dubai https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/548105683 service=crossover
on a crossover-like trail track; service=siding on third platform
track https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/548105724
- Tiānjīn: one tail track (perhaps not normally used?)
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/404273780 has service=siding,
crossover track https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/24908482 has
- Huái'ān: service=crossover
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/404937817, service=spur in yard
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/404825327 but service=yard right
next to it https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/404825287
- Zhūhǎi: service=yard in garage
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/566567307; service=spur on crossover
track https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/566567291
- Tōkyō: Setagaya Line: service=siding found on
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/454683030 (used for parking trams?),
Toden Arakawa Line: https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/180140854
service=yard in a garage/yard
- Sapporo: https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/640855721 service=spur in
the garage/yard; https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/640855704
service=siding on a tail third track;
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/640855706 service=crossover on a
crossover that also serves as entrance to the tail track

Thanks for any input!


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