[Talk-us] Bridge naming

Martijn van Exel m at rtijn.org
Mon Jul 1 23:48:37 UTC 2013

Hi all,

Thinking about bridge naming. Usually, a bridge will just have the same
name as the ways surrounding it. In those cases, the name= tag on the
bridge should just be the same as the name= tag on the connecting ways,

Here's an example:

On the other end of the spectrum, there's iconic bridges that everyone
knows by their specific name, like the Brooklyn Bridge or the Golden Gate
Bridge. These both have the specific bridge name as the name= tag on the
corresponding way(s):


There are actually several approaches suggested on the Bridge wiki on how
to tag bridge names[1]. The above cases represent the first approach: using
the name tag. This may not be appropriate everywhere, however: if the road
running across the bridge has a street name, wouldn't it be more
appropriate to reserve the name= tag for the street name and put the bridge
name in a name_1 or bridge:name tag? (The wiki suggests this in approach
#2. There is also an approach using bridge / tunnel relations. I am not a
big fan of that one myself).

Disadvantage of using a separate tag for bridge names is that they won't
get rendered on the default map, as far as I know. (Though that can be
changed.) The advantage is that the road itself maintains consistent
naming, in concordance with what I feel is the proper use of the name tag -
namely to reflect the official (signposted) name of the street.

How do you all feel about this? Bridge name on separate tag where the road
has a name itself or not?

[1] http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Key:bridge - see 'How to map'
Martijn van Exel
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