[Tagging] Tagging of State Parks in the US

Kevin Kenny kevin.b.kenny at gmail.com
Sun Jul 28 20:23:36 UTC 2019

On Sun, Jul 28, 2019 at 10:36 AM Martin Koppenhoefer
<dieterdreist at gmail.com> wrote:
> we do have an established numbered scheme for admin_levels, it could be reused to tag the administrative level that instituted the protected area, for a state park it would have the value 4, the key could remain “admin_level” also in the context of boundary=protected_area
> It seems straightforward.

Far from straightforward! It's perfectly straightforward to describe
the admin_level that runs a park. But admin_level is in no way the
source of the tagging puzzle.

The protected_area tagging, if we are to follow IUCN guidelines, does
not depend on the level of government. Under IUCN definitions, a
'national park' does NOT have to be administered by a sovereign
nation. It has to ''quack like a duck" - be a "large natural or
near-natural areas protecting large-scale ecological processes with
characteristic species and ecosystems, which also have environmentally
and culturally compatible spiritual, scientific, educational,
recreational and visitor opportunities".

In fact, I'd like to avoid even recommending 'admin_level' in favour
of 'operator' and 'site_ownership', both of which are already
frequently used. It avoids confusion in a weird case like the New York
City watershed recreation units. The weirdness comes from the fact
that the units lie *outside* New York City, and New York City isn't
their governing entity. It simply owns them as a private party would -
having purchased the land from a willing seller in order to keep it
from development. It then allows public access, just as some generous
private parties (notably, the land trusts) do. What level of
government administers them? None of the answers make sense, but
operator="New York City Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau
of Water Supply" makes perfect sense.  There really isn't much of a
case for admin_level here. (I don't *mind* it in cases where it's more
meaningful, but don't go out of my way to tag it, because it doesn't
really inform anything.)

> The kind of protection could be readable words, like nature, or birds, or culture, or water, air etc. (we’ll see what is needed when we do it). Don’t know for the key, it seems reasonable not to reuse protect_class. Maybe
> “protected:for”
> or the no underscore/colon variant:
> “protection” and the goods/qualities that are protected as value.

Already there - the 'protection_object' tag. (I use it pretty
consistently for class 3/4/5/6 areas; 1, 1a and 2, it becomes
meaningless, because the protection object tends to be 'everything
under the Sun'). It'd be a challenge for rendering because there are
so many things that might be protected.

> For specific kind of sites (e.g. protected under a specific international treaty) we could have specific tags to identify them if desired, e.g. protection_context=natura2000
> or
> protection_context=state_park
> (not sure the latter would be adding information if there was already an admin_level=4 tag)

Already there - the 'protection_title' tag; plus, as you note,
'related_law'.It's pretty useless for rendering, though; there are too
many administrative jurisdictions with too many detailed differences
in their local laws.

But this doesn't really address the problem. We can't fix State Parks
by making them 'boundary=national_park admin_level=4' because they
don't function as 'national park' in the IUCN deffinition of the term.
Instead, the typical State Park is a hybrid of nature_reserve and
recreation_ground and park and maybe a few other things. Requiring
that those land uses be mapped separately leaves no whole to which the
name and boundary can be assigned, but the whole doesn't really have
anything binding it together other than a protection status, a
coterminous set of boundaries and a name.

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