[Talk-us] Address improvement through imports?

Ian Dees ian.dees at gmail.com
Wed Nov 2 15:24:08 GMT 2011

On Wed, Nov 2, 2011 at 10:17 AM, Martijn van Exel <m at rtijn.org> wrote:

> On Wed, Nov 2, 2011 at 7:35 AM, Steven Johnson <sejohnson8 at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > Up to now, we've been talking largely about addresses as point features.
> > However, one thing I think would be good to have is block ranges on
> streets.
> > What I mean is a tag that indicates this is the 1000 block, the 1100
> block,
> > the 1200 block, etc. Rather than being a point feature attached to
> > buildings, it would be a tag associated with the way. It would be much
> > easier to implement, make the map renderings much more presentable at
> small
> > scales, and provide better address utility than presently exists.
> Ranges are what 'all the others' use and are familiar territory for
> all navigation applications. They rarely if ever rely on address
> points and do interpolation, which works well in urban areas but can
> be miles off in rural areas.
> I think that ranges are good for a first iteration because they're
> less cumbersome to collect and map. They do require cutting up the
> ways at junctions like Richard mentions. Where there's no data
> available to import and / or not a lot of local mappers, ranges may be
> as good as it gets for OSM. Where there is good quality data to import
> and/or enough dedicated mappers, they should be replaced by address
> points, I think.
> Another thought: the ranges could be derived from the cross streets,
> couldn't they? At least here in Salt Lake the addresses on 900W
> between 100S and 200S are all in the 100-200 range. And if they can be
> derived, what use is it to duplicate the information?
Address range information can be derived from existing TIGER data quite

However, I would argue that we should only talk about importing point
information for two reasons:
1) address ranges get in the way of editing existing TIGER features (to
align a road you also have to align the two address range ways on either
2) address ranges are difficult to improve (if I wanted to map a single
address after a photo map trip, I would have to split the existing address
range way into constituent parts)

...whereas point addresses (even if we generate them artificially from
TIGER address ranges) can easily be moved to their correct location without
modifying complex way geometries. Their tags can be copied on to nearby
buildings quickly and easily.
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