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How do I map a bus stop that is not marked in any way?

I am mapping a bus stop that does not have a post, a sign or any other physical indicator - however, in all other ways it is a regular bus stop: buses do stop there regularly, the bus stop appears on official timetables, and the bus stop on the opposite side of the road (which is marked) has a note indicating that some buses stop on the opposite side.

The wiki page for highway=bus_stop just says:

Some bus stops are unmarked and known only by word-of-mouth or from information provided on a timetables.

However there is no information on how to tag this. I would think this information is important, because otherwise people who see the bus stop on a map and want to use it will be looking out for a sign that is not there.

Is there a tag like unmarked=yes or similar? Is there any proposal?

asked 21 Aug '19, 11:39

sleske's gravatar image

accept rate: 24%

Hi sleske, I don't see any formal documentation on it, but it seems that adding unsigned=yes is a common way to tag this. I tried to check how common this is but Overpass is giving me guff today. My rough guess is somewhere between 500 and 1000 uses, so a semi-established tagging practice.

I'd probably also add something like description=bus stop is unsigned in this direction, wait opposite the sign across the road.

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answered 21 Aug '19, 15:55

jmapb's gravatar image

accept rate: 22%

Hm, unsigned=yes seems reasonable. However, at least during my quick check with Overpass, I did not find any usage for bus stops (it is used, but apparently only for streets without a sign post). So right now I'm wary of starting a new tagging scheme...

(17 Oct '19, 12:53) sleske

It happens quite often in rural areas. When I face this situation, I just tag the public_transport=paltform with shelter=no, pole=no, source=*. Anyway, current rendering won't make any difference. But it's good to put the information in the database for future use.

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answered 22 Aug '19, 20:57

zorglubu's gravatar image

accept rate: 15%

Even in urban area of developing countries. Where I live, a city of 200 000 inhabitants, most of the bus stops are such: there's absolutely nothing (no sign, no platform, no shelter, no bench), all that might help you know there's a bus stop is just that you will see several people waiting, then you ask them: "Does the bus stop here?". I've been mapping them as normal bus stops (without putting platform, bench and shelter of course)

(23 Aug '19, 05:10) Privatemajory

Hi Sleske, It is a strange phenomenal, what still only can be found in rural area's, for instance in Scandinavia. If you walk along a main road and put your hand up the bus driver will make a local stop and if you ask him to stop elsewhere, he would do so as well. Just like at any other time and place, but nowadays a bus driver has to get and keep his schedule at all times stealth stops are no part of it. IMHO you could tag the route of a bus line with that option or possibillity and not a specific place, like my uncle's farm. With the tag informal stop=yes

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answered 21 Aug '19, 15:08

Hendrikklaas's gravatar image

accept rate: 5%


This type of bus behavior is called "hail and ride" -- the rider can choose where to board and where to disembark the bus, anywhere along a given section. There's a special way to tag this: In short, instead of adding stops, you add the section of road to a bus route relation and use hail_and_ride as the role of that section in that relation.

I don't think this is applicable to sleske's question, though. It sounds like this situation is a normal bus stop in a fixed location, just without a sign. (Of course there could also be "hail and ride" along this same section; having fixed bus stop locations doesn't preclude that.)

(21 Aug '19, 15:41) jmapb

There are also plenty of unmarked bus stops where you need to know where they are in order to catch the bus (usually in out-of-the-way places in the country, but sometimes when a route has changed but the signage hasn't caught up, or when there is a bus stop (flag) on one side of the road but not the other). In the UK Naptan dataset these are called Customary stops; they have been imported in many areas into OSM, but not tagged with highway=bus_stop. Hail-and-ride sections have in the past been marked this way but this is inaccurate and really a legacy of inadequate data systems being owned by PT providers.

(22 Aug '19, 18:46) SK53 ♦

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question asked: 21 Aug '19, 11:39

question was seen: 2,555 times

last updated: 17 Oct '19, 12:54

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