[Tagging] addresses on buildings

Colin Smale colin.smale at xs4all.nl
Tue Jan 7 19:41:26 UTC 2020

On 2020-01-07 20:04, Paul Allen wrote:

>> But why do we need to have the full street address on the building at all?
> To identify it.  In the UK, house number or name, plus postcode is sufficient to 
> uniquely identify it.  People, however, still find other information useful.  Such as 
> the address being 7 Foo Street means it's probably accessible by Foo Street.

I'm glad you said "probably", because it is of course not always true.
And these edge cases are what we need to accommodate. Limiting the
discussion to just handling the easy cases is cheating. 

Bit of a philosophical question: What is an address? In the UK, the Post
Town and Postcode are for the purposes of delivering mail. If they
happen to be useful to other parties, that's great, but it is only a
side-effect. The street name, plus house number/name, are more directly
addressed at members of the public trying to find the property in
question. Administrative boundaries are not relevant in UK addressing,
unlike many European countries (I know about NL, DE, BE, FR) where
"places" have defined boundaries. 

The relationship between buildings and postcodes is N:M. If we replace
the word "building" with "premises" and saying that an address refers to
a "premises" may get us a bit closer, given that a "premises" may
consist of part of a building, a  whole building, multiple buildings or
any combination thereof.
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