[Talk-us] importing bus stops

Gregory Arenius gregory at arenius.com
Wed Apr 11 05:03:58 BST 2012

> Anyone here with experience importing bus stops? Any particular
> considerations?

I haven't imported any but I've tagged a bazillion of them.

> To make it more concrete, I have permission to import all UTA stops. They
> come in a shapefile similar to the one available for download here:
> http://gis.utah.gov/sgid-**vector-download/utah-sgid-**
> vector-gis-data-layer-**download-index?fc=BusStops_UTA<http://gis.utah.gov/sgid-vector-download/utah-sgid-vector-gis-data-layer-download-index?fc=BusStops_UTA>
> (That particular set of files is out of date, though)
> There's a number of properties that would map to OSM nodes pretty nicely:
> MAILBOX -> create a separate node amenity=
> LIGHT -> lit=yes
> SHELTER -> shelter=yes
> BENCH -> bench=yes (?)

I looked at the shapefiles  you linked to and didn't see any mailbox
properties.  I'd be wary of using an attribute like that  to add mailbox
nodes.  How do you tell the location of the box relative to the stop unless
they make sure they're very close before they mark that attribute that yes.

Also, the file I looked at (SLC) only had null value for shelter and
bench.  Do the updated ones actually have some values there.  Do you know
what UTA is referring to in the CURB and GUTTER attributes?  Again, the
file I looked at only had zeros there.  I always add shelter and bench
information to the stops I tag.  I also use a tag called ticker=yes/no to
indicate if it has real time arrival data or not.  So, lit, shelter and
bench are all good tags to have if the data is there.

How accurate is the coordinate data for those stop nodes?  Is it good
enough to indicate which corner the stop is at at an intersection, and
which side of the corner?

If it is that accurate awesome, if not the import just got a lot, lot
harder to do correctly.  Given all the info in the attributes for the stops
(eg, direction and midblock etc) you could probably still make it work but
not easily.  If its really accurate though its good.

Do you know if the location ID is publicly visible or only for backend
purposes?  In some places the stops have stop IDs that can be texted to 511
to get arrival times for the next bus or two.  If these are public facing
numbers I would throw them in a ref tag otherwise I would probably leave
them out.

> I was planning to just use what I know which is highway=bus_stop for the
> bus stops, and railway=tram_stop for the light rail stops. But now I see
> that using highway=bus_stop is *very controversial*[1]! If it weren't so
> blatantly untrue I'd think it was a joke. Or did I miss something?
> To get back on topic, if anyone wants to help out devise a mapping from
> UTA stops file to OSM, I'd welcome some help. I've never done a local
> import before, and I'm not a particularly big fan of imports, so I want to
> proceed with caution.

I use highway=bus_stop for all of my bus_stop tagging.  As far as I know
thats also how the public transit add on in JOSM handles them.  The whole
public_transport tag set feels like overkill to me.  I don't see how having
the bus stop node where the bus stop is as opposed to the on way is that
hard to handle.  Ideally the bus stops end up as part of route relations
that make that explicit anyhow.

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