The course of a stream has been artificially changed. So, the old stream bed is always dry now.

I wouldn't map it with intermittent=yes, since a concrete barrier prevents water from flowing there.

But how can I map that dry stream bed? It's a significant local feature, and I'd rather not omit it.

asked 10 Feb '14, 15:38

solitone's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

Hi a question like this has been solved here at But you could consider using waterway=wadi for a stream that’s carrying water every now and then. Look at the waterways tags and you’ll see an extra tag concerning the width together with your intermittent=yes ! of the dry bed, very good. Or just waterway=old river branch with intermittent as well.

permanent link

answered 10 Feb '14, 15:47

Hendrikklaas's gravatar image

accept rate: 5%


Yes, I did read that post, still I was unconvinced with intermittent=yes, since that feature is no longer a waterway. It's just a dry ditch, with some bushes growing in it. But there are still banks, bridges, etc.

As far as I understand, waterway=wadi seems more appropriate for Middle East and North Africa. I would use waterway=old_stream and dry=yes. What do you think?

(10 Feb '14, 16:38) solitone

Wadi's are in Europe used to collect rainwater and loose it by filtration no need for a sewer system, I just added 4. I used the tag waterway=old_ river_branch for cut of, water carrying branches. So you could use old_stream, dry=yes and consider adding the name of the river. If there's any change of flooding by heavy rainfall use intermittent instead.

(10 Feb '14, 21:28) Hendrikklaas

Ok, thanks, Hendrikklaas. I'll go with:

  • waterway=old_stream_branch (on second thought, it seems easier to understand than simply old_stream)
  • dry=yes (some pools of water may form after heavy rainfalls, but I doubt there is ever any significant flow of water)
  • name=Rio di Pallera (the name of the stream, that now flows down a different course)
(11 Feb '14, 09:42) solitone

@Hendrikklaas Re "Wadi's are in Europe used to collect rainwater and lose it by filtration no need for a sewer system" - have you got an example of that use anywhere? I've not heard of the word "wadi" used for that before - a more common English word for something that "collects rainwater and loses it by filtration" would be a soakaway.

(11 Feb '14, 10:27) SomeoneElse ♦

Wadi's are planned, studied and made since 2008, just to collect large floods temporarily read this study with a translation at page 6 Several communities realized wadi's for instance in the municipality of Helden and Houten, but the use is growing. I expect a soakaway to be an fixed drain at the end of a tube and not an lowered area in a meadow.

(11 Feb '14, 11:27) Hendrikklaas

@Hendrikklaas That's a paper from the Department of the Environment in the Netherlands - you haven't got an English source have you (by which I don't mean a document in Dutch by a Dutch organisation which also includes an English translation)?

(11 Feb '14, 12:14) SomeoneElse ♦
showing 5 of 6 show 1 more comments

There seems to be a better solution now for such dry stream beds.

Not to use such tags like waterway=drystream

but recommending



permanent link

answered 06 May, 11:48

Wanderweber's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%

A gully is result of sharp erosion though. I ment a flat stream bed.

(06 May, 14:20) solitone

I see, thank you for the explanation. :)
So you succesfully published "waterway=old_stream_branch"?
I am asking, because I have a similar situation in Germany (old dry stream branch is a impressive 30 meter wide and 5 meter deep deepening in a meadow now) and it is also not a wadi.

(08 May, 07:06) Wanderweber
Your answer
toggle preview

Follow this question

By Email:

Once you sign in you will be able to subscribe for any updates here



Answers and Comments

Markdown Basics

  • *italic* or _italic_
  • **bold** or __bold__
  • link:[text]( "title")
  • image?![alt text](/path/img.jpg "title")
  • numbered list: 1. Foo 2. Bar
  • to add a line break simply add two spaces to where you would like the new line to be.
  • basic HTML tags are also supported

Question tags:


question asked: 10 Feb '14, 15:38

question was seen: 2,568 times

last updated: 08 May, 07:33

powered by OSQA