[Tagging] amenity=police

Jan S grimpeur78 at gmail.com
Tue Mar 5 11:17:19 UTC 2019

Am Fr., 1. März 2019 um 18:55 Uhr schrieb Greg Troxel <gdt at lexort.com>:

> Martin Koppenhoefer <dieterdreist at gmail.com> writes:
> > I wonder what we call "police" in OSM.
> >
> > The wiki does not offer a lot of guidance (France aside): "A police
> station
> > is a building where police officers and other staff work and are
> dispatched
> > from, and where suspects and evidence are collected and processed."
> > https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:amenity%3Dpolice
> >
> > Is this limited to civil police forces, or does it include military
> forces?
> > The French seem to include the Gendarmerie (military force under the
> > jurisdiction of the Ministry of the Interior), and similarly we include
> the
> > Carabinieri in Italy (adding also landuse=military).

I have looked at some police facilites in my area and must admit that I am
now even more confused about how to map them.

Here in Germany, there are two main police forces, the 16 state polices and
the federal police. Also, in some cities there is a municipal police, which
are usually uniformed members of the city administration who are not
allowed to recur to the use of force. Still, they do some minor policing
tasks. There's also a military police, but afaik their competences are
restricted to issues within the military forces.

Here in Frankfurt for example, the municipal police station is tagged as
"amenity=police" and "operator=Stadtpolizei" (
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/440792258), which to me is fine. State
and federal police stations are also tagged as "amenity=police" albeit
without the "operator" tag (e.g. https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/440792258
for a federal police station and
https://www.openstreetmap.org/node/401296942 for a state police station).
That's also fine, I guess, although the "operator" tag might be helpful.

However, other facilities of the state police, like barracks for special
units, are also tagged as "amenity=police" (
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/55342341), although they don't attend the
public at all. And even stranger, barracks of the federal police are tagged
as "military=barracks" (https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/4537958),
although since the Federal Border Protection Service (Bundesgrenzschutz)
has been transformed into the federal police in the 1990s, it has lost its
combatant status under international law and today clearly is a civil
police force.

In France, I've checked only one Gendarmerie site, where the area has been
tagged as "landuse=military" but the Gendarmerie station on the area, where
the public is attended, has been tagged as "amenity=police" (
https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/47840959). However, the barracks of the
Compagnie Républicaine de Sécurité at Strabourg are also mapped as
"amenity=police", although there doesn't seem to be a post to attend the
public, either.

The combination of "office=government" and "government=police" is hardly
used at all in Germany and France (which is not surprising at all, given
that taginfo only returns 75 instances at all).

In consequence, I don't see that the current way of tagging police
facilities was useful for several reasons:

1) Police facilities are tagged as "amenity=police", indiscriminately of
whether one can go there in an emergency or not. Even purely administrative
units which don't attend the public at all receive the same tag as common
police stations.

2) The police has a variety of facilites, similar to the military forces,
that cannot be currently differentiated.

3) There is a confusion about what to tag as "police" and what to tag as

I would hence suggest to introduce a new tag "police" with keys like
"station", "administration", "criminal police", "barracks", "range",
"naval_base" (for river police or coast guard), etc. The type of police
could then be tagged as "operator=*"

"police=station" should be defined as comprising all police stations of the
lowest level, where you can turn to in case of an emergency, no matter
whether the operating entity is formally a civil or a military one. Other
areas or buildings, like barracks, ranges, administrative units etc. could
then be tagged as "police=*" or "military=*", according to the
classification of the operating force.

Any thoughts on this?

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