[Talk-GB] Reclassification of English highway network consultation

Ralph Smyth RalphS at cpre.org.uk
Mon Feb 7 17:52:21 GMT 2011

Consultation was launched last week about giving local authorities scope
to reclassify non-trunk roads. 

Given that local authorities have a statutory deadline of the end of
March to finish off their Local Transport Plans, which set out their
policy for up to 20 years, some might suggest this is not the best time
for this consultation. Although chapter 4 about reclassification is
interesting, chapter 5 on data may perhaps be of greatest interest to
this list. The document is at:

I'm raising this here to find out:
- what the implications might be for OSM, e.g. OSM could be much quicker
at updating the information than other maps like google or OS, so it
could lead to more web traffic
- what the OSM perspective is, in case this is useful for CPRE's
consultation response

One of the consultation questions is 'Do these reporting arrangements
ensure that all interest parties will receive update information where
required?' I'd say no and think the proposed local authority
notification form for changing route should be published on DfT site in
an open format, rather than just being sent to OS? But what format could
the data be in?

	Road Classification more generally

The classification of UK roads on OSM very much follows official
designations, whereas in other countries it takes more account of what's
on the ground. Part of the DfT's justification for these proposals is to
enable local authorities to change highway designations so that they
reflect the type of road and its use better.

Road classification is something CPRE has long had an interest in,
having secured a (not particularly effective) amendment to the Transport
Act 2000 in relation to rural road hierarchies. By way of background,
I've been involved in the DfT's Traffic Signs Policy Review and have
been trying to rekindle this agenda:

The main difference in rendering between OSM and OS seems to be that the
latter tends to show minor roads in yellow (with a narrower version for
sub 4m width), then other roads etc. as white, while OSM makes a
distinction between classified and unclassified. I'm not sure where the
suggestion in key:highway that the presence of centre line (median)
markings determines whether a road is classified or not: I don't think
it's correct. I think differentiating on width would be more useful for
OSM in the UK in future.

In relation to how to tag Home Zones and Quiet Lanes (exert from Andy's
email on this at end), in the UK they are merely a designation (e.g.
signs going up as well as a peculiar designation order) whereas in other
countries Home Zones are a separate classification of the official road
hierarchy. But this is a really technical legal point: would it not be
better to do just the same as other countries?

	Other OSM issues
- Does OSM tag Primary Destinations for the Primary Route Network? This
could be useful for giving greater priority to displaying text for such
tags on lower zoom levels. Similarly for destinations used in cycle
network signage etc.

- Do any Satnav providers use OSM data or is this likely in the future?
E.g. if Peter Miller's proposal for subjective data to be gathered in
some way?


Wed Jan 26 18:02:34 GMT 2011
> You can see the sign by rule 218 of
> the Highway Code, although some pre-2006 schemes used a different
> www.direct.gov.uk/en/TravelAndTransport/Highwaycode/DG_069858
> So there should be a 'quiet_lane' value for highway, just as there is
> 'living_street'.
Wouldn't that arguably be a different tag to "highway"?  From memory I 
think that I've seen exactly one of these (Moor Lane, Youlgreave; way 
37522804).  Presumably that's still "highway=unclassified" after 
someone's stuck some "quiet lane" signs up?


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