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Most of the Wiki documentation regarding highway classification (both the general guidelines and the national schemes) concerns the tagging of inter-city highways. Many of them are based on an official classification scheme. However, in some countries, the official designation of a highway ends as it joins the city street grid. This leaves a lot of ambiguity on how to tag intra-city roads. For example, while London's major roads have ref numbers, allowing them to be accordingly tagged, such doesn't seem to be the case for Paris.

What are the main considerations in applying the tagging schemes to intra-city roads which don't have an official classification? The "importance" of a road is often mentioned, but this is rather subjective, especially without official status as a guide. Objective values such as lanes and amount of traffic have been noted to be inappropriate for such purposes.

My question specifically derives from discussions regarding Bangkok, but I'm more interested in current practices and concepts in general. Such information could help the local community develop better specific guidelines.

asked 24 Feb '13, 09:31

Paul_012's gravatar image

accept rate: 33%

Rule of thumb: Let the road classes form a network. primary highways continue through the city on the best way toward other primaries that leave the city at other ends. Secondaries connect to other secondaries or end at primaries, tertiary highways to other tertiaries or they end at highways of higher classes and so on.

Dead ends should be avoided, but can occur (e.g. if the neighbourhood is at the end of a valley).

A good classification can only be obtained by local knowledge and fieldwork. Check the signpostings, lane count, prioritized traffic signals and so on. But in case that there is no road classification in your city, it is worthwile to create one, which can be later improved by fieldwork, once a local community develops.

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answered 25 Feb '13, 14:05

moszkva%20ter's gravatar image

moszkva ter
accept rate: 17%

In Vienna, "B streets" are tagged primary, secondary and tertiary are tagged based on their "importance" (how important are they to get from one part of the city to another ~ secondary; are they important to get into some neighbourhood district ~ tertiary). And yes, you have to know the local situation by heart to get a clue. You have to discuss&decide this together with the other locals and come to a solution that fits your local city, FWICT.

And if you want to map this in another city, ask the locals there.


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answered 24 Feb '13, 10:22

_al's gravatar image

accept rate: 4%

Indeed, importance and common sense are the only things usable for this.

(24 Feb '13, 19:55) cartinus

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question asked: 24 Feb '13, 09:31

question was seen: 3,588 times

last updated: 25 Feb '13, 14:05

NOTICE: is no longer in use from 1st March 2024. Please use the OpenStreetMap Community Forum