[Tagging] [OSM-talk] Should we map things that do not exist?

Mateusz Konieczny matkoniecz at tutanota.com
Sat Jan 2 13:46:50 UTC 2021

Dec 31, 2020, 18:14 by voschix at gmail.com:

> Re-opening this thread, sorry.
> The wording in the wiki page > Demolished Railway <https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Demolished_Railway>>  that was introduced in July 2019 halfway in an inclusive discussion in this thread, still includes the statement:
> "Its course is well documented, but such historic feature is out of scope of OpenStreetMap, should not be mapped and can be deleted if mapped" (in a picture caption)
> There is a similar wording 
> "Place where railway existed in the past. It must not be tagged in any way, as no trace of it remains."
> that was inserted on 17 July 2019 into the wiki page > Life cycle prefix <https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Lifecycle_prefix>
> Both statements are not only not reflecting correctly the inconclusive discussion in this thread, but are also against the spirit of good practice in OSM.
Are you claiming that railway that 

(1) existed long time ago, is not present in any aerial images,
is not remembered by local inhabitants, noone thinks that it
exists and is not present in any serious records as existing -
and therefore not going to be accidentally remapped

(2) railway track, embankment, track ballast, sleepers,
any associated infrastructure, bridges, cuttings (if any),
railway platform, signage, tunnels (if any) and any railway
objects are completely and utterly gone, with absolutely
no trace of any kind remaining or identifiable

is still mappable in OSM?

In my opinion clearly not, and allowing to map such objects
would be ridiculous.

To be more specific, I am living in city where 
photo was taken, visited this place hundreds of times,
it is a well known location and I was never aware 
that this place had railway.

I only learned about past existence of railway from

Even after learning about railway existence there
I was unable to find any objects, indicators or
traces of railway presence there (except tram
tracks that are going across road and are 
completely unrelated and possible upcoming tram
construction that is also utterly unrelated to past
railway tracks).

Maybe course of road that exist there was influenced
by railway, but it is an inconclusive speculation
and utterly unverifiable for a mapper.

> A similar discussion has been opened in the Italian list now, proposing the deletion of such pieces that are invisible on the ground. 
This is a good idea.

>  I just want to add a pointer here to a big (6k km) > cycling project in the US <https://www.railstotrails.org>>  that is underlining my point that razed/dismantled/removed/disused railways do have a place in map data.
Noone proposes to delete disused railway tracks from OSM.
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