[talk-au] How to tag a non-existent road

Graeme Wilson wanderer55 at live.com.au
Sun Oct 25 12:54:48 GMT 2009

I would rather that we don't have non existant roads on OSM.


Twenty plus years ago, I heard a comment that maps had deliberate errors in them so that the mapmakers could find if others were copying their work.


In my job of driving around Australia checking mobile phone coverage, I am constantly reading maps (provided by the company) to work out a driving plan, and relying on a Garmin Nuvi to confirm where I am.


I did 193,000 km in 18 months in my first car and now I do about 100,000 km per year (in my second car) because our driving is now concentrated on city and suburban areas. (where people live, work and play) 


I work out driving plans that can take weeks to complete ie, all of NSW west of the Great Divide, and all of SW Western Australia. Both took about 8 weeks to complete. I take great pride in doing what I call "efficient driving" where I cover the greatest distance and area in the least time and fuel used. I used $22,000 plus worth of fuel in the first 12 months. I also 'cut it fine' a lot of the time with no buffer for time if there is an error. I go out for 10 working days straight, then fly back to Canberra for a 4 day weekend, then go out again. If I have been delayed anywhere, then the driving plan gets mucked up because I dont want to miss my flight and when I return I may have to take another day to drive back to the area that I should have completed, finish the job, then drive to the new area. Again, more time lost and fuel used.


Two of the greatest, most hair tearing and frustrating things that can scuttle my driving plan are non existant roads and no through roads that are not marked as such.


Now some of these non existant roads are not a real problem if they are in a small out back town with only a few hundred people in them and I can quickly alter the plan and work around it, and I have found places where the roads are obviously gazetted and therefore appear on the Garmin Nuvi, but the locals have fenced the streets off and run goats and chooks there. Squatting, in other words. 


But if a road does not exist but is marked on my maps or appears in the Garmin Nuvi, then I have to drive back over roads that I have already driven on which makes the job take longer and uses more fuel.


There is a good example north of Penrith heading for Castlereigh. A road is gazetted and the farms either side have been cleared and fenced, but the road is virgin bush. Stuffed my plan right up.


Another place where non existant roads turned my hair white is Katoomba. If you rely on the Garmin Nuvi it will take you over a cliff in several places. I looked up whereis.com and found where I could make complaints, but decided that it would be a near full time job correcting their errors.


No through roads are another bane. I don't know if OSM has a function to tag no through roads, but if they dont, then could we have it please. NTR No Through Road.


There are many instances of intersections that have been converted to T junctions and one no thru road. One suburb in Cairns in particular (Edge Hill), and Salisbury in Adelaide have lots. It's obviously been done as a road safety initiative and I will not critisize this decision.


The printed company maps that I get generally can't show some no thru roads because the scale is too small to see that the intersection has been converted, and the Nuvi again has to have the scale set right down to see it, which takes my focus off to road.


When I first started on OSM, I wanted to have altitude data in with the lat lon info, and was told bluntly that "OSM is a street map, not a GIS." 


So, my bottom line is: Don't have non existant roads. OSM is a street map displaying roads that do exist!

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