[Talk-ca] Fixing Albertan Places

jewen at shaw.ca jewen at shaw.ca
Wed Sep 24 03:01:40 BST 2008

On 9/23/08, simon at mungewell.org <simon at mungewell.org> wrote:

> Yes, the specialized municipalities cause some problems.... I checked in
> the source listing and it should be (which won't produce a match, and
> therefore no change to existing nodes):
>   Sherwood Park (Urban Service Area) = Hamlet
>   Fort McMurray (Urban Service Area) = Hamlet

Hmm, I went to see what Wikipedia had to say about what a Hamlet
was... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamlet_(place)#Canada

Just what we are talking about, but missing a little information.

Sherwood Park held onto the hamlet designation for many years, bucking
the establishment. If Sherwood Park were to become a city, it would
need to draw a boundary around the city. For Sherwood Park to maintain
it's status quo, they would need to include the refineries within the
city limits to be able to siphon off the taxes. Doing so would leave
Strathcona County without any tax base, so there would be a big fight
over where the boundary would be drawn. Maintaining that hamlet status
circumvented any boundary disputes by leaving the county governance in
place. The change to a specialized municipality allows the whole
county to gain access to different government funding, without having
to draw city limits.

However, after that is all said and done, there needs to be a way to
tag the urban service node area commonly known as Sherwood Park. A
settlement of 60,000 people should have a dot that shows up well
before you are zoomed in looking at a 2 square mile area.

Similarly, Fort McMurray should have a dot representative of the
50,000 inhabitants. The RM of Wood Buffalo is a large chunk of land,
and drawing an outline around it, and trying to say this is the
Specialized Municipality of Wood Buffalo is not representative of the

> With the municipalities on would expect that a way would be used to mark
> the boundary, and this way would contain tags for the population.

Well, I drew the city limits of Edmonton many months ago, as well as
the outline of Strathcona County, and Sherwood Park's urban service
area. They never get rendered.

> Towns/Villages/Hamlets within a specialized municipality could have a
> 'population=refer to xxx' as a marker (until we really work out what to
> do) and just place Town/Village/Hamlet node for name marking - the crime
> of tagging for the renders I guess.

There needs to be a way to designate zoom levels. If you zoom out on
Edmonton, the label disappears behind Stony Plain or Spruce Grove, if
I recall correctly. Edmonton has 600,000 people in it, Spruce Grove is
about 40,000 I think. You have to zoom in pretty close before you can
find the capital of Alberta on the map.

> Crowsnest Pass also falls into this situation.

Yup, and you should be able to put representative sized dots on the
map for Coleman, Blairmore, Bellevue, and Hillcrest.

There are many hundreds of place on the OSM map in Alberta that have
names, and show up on the map. I could spend many hours wandering up
and down through the bush looking for anything other than trees, moose
and squirrels!


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