[talk-au] Ferry Routes mapping in NSW

Warin 61sundowner at gmail.com
Mon Nov 26 09:30:58 UTC 2018

Other routes use relations, and don't display on 'the map'. Bus routes, 
train routes, hiking, cycling all use relations and don't normally 
display on 'the map'.
All of these do break up some of the ways into sections that are 
annoying for us to edit but it is needed for these routes (and other 
things like changes in speed limits).

However ferries have to deviate from the 'way' for other vessels, 
hazards etc so the existence of the way is only an indication not an 

Not certain what you mean by 'custom tagging'.
If you mean to have ways with tags different from those existing there 
is nothing stopping you from doing so, but your going to be the only 
person using them.

I think you might mean that 'your' ferry ways will be custom tagged and 
then 'your' route relation would use them for the routing engines.
Could work.

However ... if the present ways are not what really happens .. then that 
is a problem.
While it may 'look good' OSM is more about truth on the ground/water 
than looking good.

Good luck .. it will not be easy!

  On 26/11/18 11:43, Sigurjón Gísli Rúnarsson wrote:
> Hi all,
> I have had some recent feedback regarding my changes to the ferry 
> route paths in Sydney Harbour in August this year.  I basically 
> changed the mapping from single way approach to relation approach. The 
> main reason for this change was so that the ferry route paths could be 
> used for routing purposes, to reflect what is actually happening on 
> the “ground” with these ferry route services.
> The feedback I received from the OSM user is that these ferry routes 
> should be mapped back to single way approach as having ways 
> intersecting/branching between terminals/wharves should not be 
> allowed. Rather, there should only be a single way between wharves.  
> At the moment some routing engines take turns in the middle of the 
> harbour (example 
> <https://www.openstreetmap.org/directions?engine=graphhopper_foot&route=-33.8471%2C151.1852%3B-33.8385%2C151.1760#map=16/-33.8434/151.1907> 
> – now fixed in database) which I agree is not ideal.  I have tried to 
> map the ways to avoid this as much as possible.
> I feel that I’m following the wiki 
> https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:route=ferry with the relation 
> approach.  At the time that I made the changes, I got only minimal 
> (all positive) feedback regarding my approach to this.  But I can also 
> understand the reasoning behind why the single way approach is 
> preferred, as it looks better from a cartographic point of view on the 
> standard OSM map tiles and gives a good overview of the ferry routes.
> Unfortunately mapping with the single way approach does not give 
> options for accurate routing based on the way the actual ferry 
> services operate.
> The idea was brought forward to apply custom tagging to the “new” ways 
> that have been mapped based on the relation approach.  These custom 
> tags (i.e. route=[custom tag]) could then be used in conjunction with 
> single way approach ways for routing based on services.
> I am not saying this is ideal, but I am willing to look at any 
> compromise that could be perhaps suit everybody.
> So my question is, is it possible to tag with custom tagging (i.e. 
> route=ferry_services) or any of the existing tags 
> https://taginfo.openstreetmap.org/tags? That would mean that routing 
> engines like graphHopper could keep using the route=ferry for it’s ‘A’ 
> to ‘B’ foot routing.**
> I think that moving forward, there will be the need for relation 
> approach (routable) ferry route paths.  App devs and transport 
> agencies will have need to use these ways for routing. Obviously, this 
> is my opinion, so I would really appreciate your views on this.
> Thank you
> On Mon, 6 Aug 2018 at 23:42, Andrew Harvey <andrew.harvey4 at gmail.com 
> <mailto:andrew.harvey4 at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     I think so long as there's an active ferry route running between
>     two terminals then it should have a route=ferry[1] connecting
>     them, roughly following the actual geometry the route normally
>     takes. Where you have a ferry route that sometimes has a few
>     variants, eg. sometimes skips a terminal, or sometimes goes to a
>     different wharf, then that can be accounted for using the ferry
>     route relation.
>     As the wiki points out[1], this could be a simple way, or a route
>     relation[2]
>     [1] https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Tag:route%3Dferry
>     [2] https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Relation:route
>     On 6 August 2018 at 23:20, Sigurjón Gísli Rúnarsson
>     <sjonni11 at gmail.com <mailto:sjonni11 at gmail.com>> wrote:
>         Hi,
>         I would like to amend the Ferry routes in NSW, particularly in
>         and around Sydney using a different approach.
>         At the moment the Ferry routes are mapped with a *single way
>         approach,* by tagging a single way drawn along the whole route
>         (i.e. Circular Quay to Manly).  The only benefit for the
>         single line approach, that I can see, is that it is simple and
>         represents well on the map tiles.  The problem with this
>         approach is that it does not allow ways to share different
>         routes and or variants.
>         That’s where my particular problem lies.  When I try to
>         generate route paths from GTFS Sydney Ferries and private
>         ferries (TfNSW) using the OSM Ferry route paths as the routing
>         network, a lot of errors occur. Many variants/trips in the
>         GTFS dataset, which are based on recent timetable information
>         from Sydney Ferries and other private operators, have no
>         routing options.  This is because of the single way approach
>         between wharves.
>         For example, F4 Watsons Bay – Pyrmont via Rose Bay and
>         Circular Quay: To go from Rose Bay to Circular Quay the
>         routing takes you around the harbour (Taronga Zoo, Milsons
>         Point, Balmain and Darling H) before getting to CQ Wharf 5.
>         Instead, there should be a direct route displayed between Rose
>         Bay and Circular Quay
>         Another example is that one ferry service might use wharf 5 at
>         Circular Quay, but 20% of the trips/variants might use wharf
>         4. Those 20% of trips/variants will not route to and from the
>         correct wharf using the single way approach.
>         To be able to use the OSM Ferry route network for routing
>         using GTFS files from TfNSW, I want to map based on the
>         *relation approach*.  Just like other transport modes are
>         being mapped in OSM (i.e. bus routes).
>         This would mean that more than one ferry route could share
>         some ways, enabling users to extract OSM ferry routes to use
>         for routing.
>         I would like to get thoughts from OSM users on this approach
>         before I start mapping in such way.
>         Regards,
>         Maradona11
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