[Talk-ca] BC Highway tagging

Paul Norman penorman at mac.com
Fri Sep 9 07:20:50 BST 2011

> From: Nathan Edgars II [mailto:neroute2 at gmail.com]
> Subject: Re: BC Highway tagging
> On 9/7/2011 11:37 PM, Paul Norman wrote:
> > While reviewing the highways I travelled this long weekend (1, 5 to
> > Kamloops, 5 to Clearwater, 1;97 to Sushwap, 1 to Hope, 7 to Vancouver)
> > I came across some new tags on the relations. Taking Highway 7 as an
> > example, the changes were
> >
> > -The removal of name=Highway 7
> I see no reason to have this on the relation, and at least one reason to
> remove it (JOSM then sorts the relations by number rather than by name).

In the case of some highways (e.g. 1 through the lower mainland) they
clearly have a name, as is evident by the AM730 and 1130 reports as well as
common usage. In the case of Highway 7 I guess the name should have been
Lougheed Highway. For the 99 and 91 there is no commonly used name so it is
not clear that name=* is required, but I believe it is worth adding for
consistency. The relations will not be sorted in any meaningful order if
name is the primary sort key because of the routes that do have names.

> > -Changing network=ca_bc_primary to network=CA:BC
> There were some network=CA:BC already.

There may have been some, but the vast majority were ca_bc_primary, and I
believe this comes from CanVec. It shouldn't be changed without some
discussion, because it will be continued to be used.

> > On some other relations the tagging nhs=yes was added.
> > http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/w/index.php?title=Key:NHS&action=history
> > <http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/w/index.php?title=Key:NHS&action=histor
> > y> indicates that this tag was first documented on Sept 6 by NE2.
> I don't think I added this to any relations, only to ways. It's been in
> use in the US for about a year.

Ah, right, it was on ways. I was looking at users who had added this tag,
but were unable to identify any other than you. Could you point me at some
other names?

NHS=* seems questionable in the US. The FHWA states 

For motorists, the NHS has no separate identity that sets it aside from
other highways - no unique sign, no special color for road signs, no unique
design standard. It includes existing Interstate highways, future Interstate
highways that are simply lines on a map today, and thousands of miles of
two-lane roads without control of access, grade separation of interchanges,
median separation, or other needed safety features. And the NHS routes,
unlike the Interstate highways, have not been a magnet for economic

As Senator Moynihan had predicted in 1991, the NHS remains a funding
category, similar to the Federal-aid primary category that had been
eliminated by ISTEA, and has resulted in the types of benefits associated
with the former category

(last paragraphs on http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/infrastructure/backbone.cfm)

After reading through the description of the US NHS, the Canadian NHS seems
even less relevant. The status on a federal government document which has no
impact in any way on the road to the users of the road and has minimal
impact on funding is not a verifiable feature, a ground truth and adds no
value to the users of the map.

I'm looking to do the cleanup this weekend as I plan to review approximately
1000 km of roads that I travelled on my holiday and it makes sense to do the
other work at the same time.

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