[Tagging] Pedestrian access tagging

Stefan Tauner stefan.tauner at gmx.at
Sun Jan 24 17:53:32 UTC 2021

On Sun, 24 Jan 2021 12:13:32 -0500
"Brian M. Sperlongano" <zelonewolf at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Sun, Jan 24, 2021 at 11:36 AM Martin Koppenhoefer <dieterdreist at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > If the intention is to legally prevent it, you would have to put a
> > motorway or motorroad sign or one that explicitly forbids pedestrians.
> > 
> While this may be true in certain countries, quite simply, this is false as
> a general rule worldwide.
> US laws prohibit walking on Interstate highway, but there is not always
> signage explicitly prohibiting pedestrians. 
> […]
> Relying solely on explicit signage without local knowledge would result in
> nonsensical tagging.

That's true however the point is less the signage (which might be
required in some countries to make walking illegal) but the fact that
walking there is illegal. Due process of law should imply signs to make
it more clear but it is not necessarily required.

I think the Sweden example is yet another case where municipal or
other governmental entities do not follow their own guidelines or some
political reason prevents putting up the required signs/denoting it a
motorway/motorroad. I quite often encounter situations where official
cycleways run over ways where bikes are theoretically not legally
allowed to be driven. In many cases I would not oppose adding a
bicycle=yes and have even done so. In one case where this tagging was
challenged I mailed the responsible municipality and they fixed their
mistake by changing the signs. If the situation on the ground is
obviously wrong we should not copy those errors to OSM IMHO.

What does this mean for OSM? As always when dealing with the real
world some common sense has to be applied. This might require adding
tags (e.g. foot=no) to ways like that trunk in Sweden (since there is no
national default that implies that for trunk) even though it might not
be legally obvious and verifiable by signs on the ground that
pedestrians are not allowed there.

Kind regards/Mit freundlichen Grüßen, Stefan Tauner

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