I have been maintaining maps for a region with a shopping centre with multiple levels - and not only that, also roads and a subway terminal directly under it. I run into problems regarding pedestrian routing (of course, there are different routing engines, but still) to hundred shops in this complex. Routing engines often "snap" shops to an entirely wrong path: for instance, shops in floor 3 might get a suggestion to enter directly through subway station 50 m below it, which is of course physically impossible and completely useless for the end user. Even worse, they might get associated with a road which would put route anywhere at length of several kilometres, even inside the shopping centre.

I'm curious of solving this problem. One candidate that comes to my mind would be explicit footpaths to shops which would be forced not to render by default. I could of course create explicit paths for every shop, but that would make normal maps completely unreadable. So, is there a way to advise map viewers (but not editors) not to render a specific footpath? I'm naively speculating that this could help my case.

asked 25 Oct, 06:48

kirma's gravatar image

kirma
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edited 25 Oct, 07:19


Have you seen the "Indoor Mapping" page on the wiki? I would suggest using the guidance there and hope that the routing engines are aware of the scheme (I was previously unaware of highway=corridor and have mapped some parts of a shopping centre in the past which should perhaps be retagged).

Edit: I've had a look at this area and as you have level tags on the shops and the footways I suspect the issue is with the routing engine(s) rather than your mapping. Having footways/corridors connected to the nodes might help, but I can see why you wouldn't want them to render.

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answered 25 Oct, 08:42

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EdLoach ♦
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edited 25 Oct, 09:02

I'm curious about indoor mapping but I fear the major users of mapping data on the region might not be ready to take advantage of it. It sounds like a good idea on the long term, but I would hope to find a less disruptive way of improving routing if possible.

(25 Oct, 11:59) kirma

One thing you can try is make sure your shops are tagged with addr:street that matches exactly to a nearby street name (If in fact it's true -- don't fake it!) Routing engines will tend to try to approach the shop via that street. But having additional footways that are closer than the street, even underground in the subway station, may prevent this from working. Making sure all footways are tagged with level may help, may not. It's a limitation of the current routing engines.

Regarding "invisible" ways to route from entrance to POI, I asked about something similar last year in this question: https://help.openstreetmap.org/questions/65222/mapping-poi-nodes-with-multiple-entrances The answering user brought up the proposed associated_entrance relation, to associate POIs with entrances so a routing engine could know where to aim when navigating from outside to a POI within a complex structure. But it's a very uncommon technique and unlikely to get routing support anytime soon.

It probably won't fix the short-term routing problem, but I think your best bet is using indoor mapping as mentioned by EdLoach. It's a popular technique so the software support for mapping, viewing, and routing will probably improve over time.

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answered 25 Oct, 18:11

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jmapb
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Although it would be questionable in nature, sometimes I'd wish there would be something like rendered=no, simply to indicate that a feature exists only for machine-derived results (routing, geocoding) and editing, not for general viewing...

(25 Oct, 20:12) kirma
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question asked: 25 Oct, 06:48

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