[Talk-us] railway=abandoned and mapping things that are not there any more?

Peter Dobratz peter at dobratz.us
Sat Jul 14 04:56:53 BST 2012

On Fri, Jul 13, 2012 at 4:43 PM, Nathan Edgars II <neroute2 at gmail.com>wrote:

> On 7/13/2012 8:45 AM, Peter Dobratz wrote:
>> On 7/13/12, Nathan Edgars II <neroute2 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> On 7/12/2012 11:43 PM, Peter Dobratz wrote:
>>>> NE2,
>>>> So after I bring up that I don't think railways should be drawn through
>>>> buildings, and most people agree with me on that, you decide to do this:
>>>> http://www.openstreetmap.org/?**lat=42.762886&lon=-71.430509&**
>>>> zoom=18&layers=M<http://www.openstreetmap.org/?lat=42.762886&lon=-71.430509&zoom=18&layers=M>
>>>> Does 86 Central Street, Hudson, NH have remnants of a railroad running
>>>> through their living room?  No, because that's ridiculous.
>>> Is it on the former route of a railway? Of course. And that's what
>>> railway=abandoned has meant since I joined OSM.
>> That is the exact point being discussed.  Why are we singling out
>> railways as a feature that essentially never goes away entirely even
>> though areas have been completely redeveloped?
>> In the case of the houses on Central Street in Hudson, these aren't
>> exactly new construction.  Here are the dates of construction
>> according to the town of Hudson's property tax assessor:
> Sorry about that, and thanks. I did in fact have it on the wrong side of
> the street: http://historical.mytopo.com/**getImage.asp?fname=mnch41sw.**
> jpg&state=NH<http://historical.mytopo.com/getImage.asp?fname=mnch41sw.jpg&state=NH>
> http://www.wardmaps.com/viewasset.php?aid=5127
I guess the main thing that is problematic about former railways is their

Between TIGER and GNIS and other imports, when I come across a road or
church that no longer exists (or in some cases never existed), I just
delete them.  But before I delete the objects, I try to make some effort to
move them to their correct location where applicable.  How am I supposed to
tell if these railways are in the right spot?  In this specific case, I was
able to make an argument that the railway was in the wrong spot and you
managed to dig up a map that's more than 100 years old to help find the
correct former railroad location.

Where does the information about the geometry of these former railways come
from?  What steps did you take to verify the data before putting it in the
OSM database?  How are you going to document this information for future
mappers?  It would seem to make sense to add additional information to a
source= or a note= tag indicating where the information about the previous
existence of the railway came from.  Or maybe there can be more verbose
information added to the wiki somewhere.
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