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Hi I'm pretty new to Open Street Map. I've been looking for a discussion on this topic with no luck.

A lot of the stuff that's been mapped in my area needs quite a bit of fixing up, some of the objects are linked together. I have found I can use the scissors to cut out nodes but this can be tedious. I am wondering if there is a way to break them apart.

The most efficient method I've come up with is just deleting one of the objects and redrawing it. It's mostly areas that are supposed to define a building but are joined to other areas or roads.

asked 20 Sep '13, 02:30

Jfact0ry's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%


could you please copy and paste the link to a location of an example? Preferably use the "marker" function of the "share" menu. I guess you are talking about unjoining nodes which are used by more than one way?

(20 Sep '13, 02:59) aseerel4c26 ♦

Do you mean where landuse is glued to roads, like this:

landuse glued to roads

(that's a screenshot of the Potlatch 2 editor)

It might help to say what editor you're using to edit OpenStreetMap, as the method to fix will vary depending on which one you're using.

(20 Sep '13, 09:27) SomeoneElse ♦

If you are using JOSM:

  • Click on one of the segments around the area, selecting it. If it is hard to select the area you can middle-click on any segment that makes the area not moving the mouse not even one pixel, then press <control> and select the way that makes the area. It'll be marked in red like in the above comment.
  • With the area selected, hold <control> and click on any of the nodes that are part of the area.
  • Press the "G" key ("UnGlue"). The way will be de-selected, but the node will still be selected (in red). If some message appears saying that the node is not glued, or part of other ways, the way selected is not correct.
  • Drag the node, separating it from the other ways, taking care not to de-select it (if it happens you can always <control>+Z ("Undo") and try again.
  • Repeat for the remaining nodes (now it is much easier to select the area, since at least two of its segments will be visible.

Do not simply select one node and press "G", because if there are other ways attached, all of them will get "unglued" to the others, creating problems for routing, etc.

It may take some time to get used to it, but after some time you'll not even think about it.

Please note that the topic of having areas like parks sharing nodes with ways, like streets, is quite controversial, but most people agree that the areas should not share nodes with streets.

permanent link

answered 20 Sep '13, 13:35

MCPicoli's gravatar image

accept rate: 24%


It was actually two churches sharing nodes. I just deleted one and changed the way the areas were being used. Formerly the areas occupied the entire lot including parking lot, now I just made it around the building.

I've been editing with iD. I am really interested in using other editors. I have access to ArcGIS desktop so I downloaded the editor with that but I haven't tried it out yet.

Thank you for your answers and I'm going to be posting more questions :Dalt text

(20 Sep '13, 19:25) Jfact0ry

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question asked: 20 Sep '13, 02:30

question was seen: 3,498 times

last updated: 20 Sep '13, 19:25

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