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Hello! I really love what OSM is doing here - putting maps in the hands of the public! I have a question though. I live in the US (Cincinnati, Ohio). Many of the mapping symbols that are used on the UK map are not suitable for use in the US. For example, the National Cycle routes are marked as a solid thick red line, but bike paths are marked by a fuzzy, faded blue smear or a small dotted blue line. Bike lanes have no distinct symbol at all (as far as I can tell). In the US, it would make sense for bike paths to be marked with a thick red line, and bike lanes to be marked with perhaps a thin green line or similar.

Is it possible to adjust the symbols for the cycle map so that it is more useful to US users? Is there already a way to do this?

asked 10 Mar '12, 15:39

Dusty%20Shoes's gravatar image

Dusty Shoes
accept rate: 0%


I understand you might be used to a certainly mapping representation but each publisher and country has a style. OSM, and the "standard" mapnik, uses its own logotypes and iconography which you might not be used to. I've travelled a fair bit and have maps by different publishers, Michelin, Ordnance Survey, Rand McNally, IGN amongst others and neither matches Mapnik (or the disappear Osmarender).

What I'm getting at is you probably have to get used to how OSM renders maps; Google and its outdated data Bing certainly don't look like any maps I'm used but this is how OSM represents them.

(10 Mar '12, 19:18) Meersbrook

The US does have some mapping conventions...most maps use red/yellow/green for an idea of how accessible a street with no bicycle facilities is; grey is commonly a way closed to bikes, purple is a dedicated cycleway and blue is a street with bicycle lanes. American bike maps usually neglect routes and numbers beyond that.

I was starting on getting some tags that would allow for the red/yellow/green convention possibility, but NE2 decided to piss on it.

(11 Mar '12, 07:54) Baloo Uriza

The big advantage of OSM is that not only rendered tiles, but also raw data is available so anyone can render a map for specific purpose (eg. for US cyclists). That is not so much an option for users though...

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answered 10 Mar '12, 16:27

LM_1's gravatar image

accept rate: 10%

Bike lanes are shown differently on OpenCycleMap - the casing (border) of the road is blue rather than grey.

As ever, the best way to get a map that looks "just so" for you is to render it yourself. There are many different tools that enable this, but perhaps the easiest to get started with is Maperitive, which runs on Windows (or on Linux via Mono). That way, you can choose the colours and line thicknesses you like.

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answered 11 Mar '12, 15:41

Richard's gravatar image

Richard ♦
accept rate: 18%

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question asked: 10 Mar '12, 15:39

question was seen: 7,827 times

last updated: 11 Mar '12, 15:41

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