[Tagging] Deprecate water=pond?

Brian M. Sperlongano zelonewolf at gmail.com
Tue Nov 10 05:53:50 UTC 2020

I normally use the name of the body of water, e.g. Foo Pond gets water=pond
and Bar Lake gets water=lake.  It's not clear to me that they have a
distinction beyond customary naming, and in my area there are ponds bigger
than lakes, though usually the lakes are larger.  If there is no
distinction beyond size, I agree that these tags are redundant, much in the
way that place=island and place=islet are: the comparative size can be
obtained from the geometry.

On Tue, Nov 10, 2020, 12:30 AM Joseph Eisenberg <joseph.eisenberg at gmail.com>

> The tag water=pond was added with a large number of other types of
> "water=*" in 2011, but it has a poorly defined description.
> "A pond <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pond>: a body of standing water,
> man-made in most cases, that is usually smaller than a lake. Salt
> evaporation ponds should be tagged with landuse
> <https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:landuse>=salt_pond
> <https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:landuse%3Dsalt_pond>, open-air
> swimming pools — with leisure
> <https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:leisure>=swimming_pool
> <https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:leisure%3Dswimming_pool>."
> So it might be artificial, like a landuse=reservoir or water=reservoir,
> but smallish. Or it might be natural like a water=lake, but smallish.
> However, nothing on the water=lake page defines a lower limit for the size
> of a lake.
> This is a shame, because all the other values of water=* are clearly
> defined as only natural, or only artificial, and waterway=* features are
> also clearly divided. Furthermore, the original lags landuse=reservoir and
> landuse=basin were also clearly artificial, while lakes were natural.
> But the biggest problem is that there is no way to define a lower size for
> a lake or reservoir, or an upper size for a pond. And the size of the area
> is easier available from the geometry of the feature, so it doesn't need to
> be mentioned in the tag.
> I think the best option is to deprecate water=pond and suggest using
> water=lake for natural lakes, even small ones, and use water=reservoir or
> water=basin (or landuse=reservoir or =basin if you prefer) for the
> artificial ones.
> -- Joseph Eisenberg
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