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Using taginfo, it seems that surface=grass is much more popular (590k vs 19k), but it doesn't differentiate between ways that form polygons and those that don't, so I'm not sure which tag is more appropriate for areas.

asked 02 Jan '20, 08:50

Zismac's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%


area=yes and area=no are accepted in combination with many tags that can be either an area or a loop.

(02 Jan '20, 17:36) InsertUser

What is typical for a park will vary according to cultural norms and climate. In Britain parks tend to be predominantly grass, but in Spain a park may contain limited areas of grass and many more hard surfaces and gravel paths. Therefore although leisure=park is conventionally rendered in green including on the Carto-CSS style this may reflect specific cultural expectations. Adding a surface tag can clarify that a park is indeed predominantly grass.

Landuse grass is used for many different things, but most usually for grassy places which have not, or cannot be easily, categorised as something else (parks, farmland etc). It is also often used to make areas appear green on CartoCSS (mapping for the renderer). Although it is possible to map grassy areas within a park as landuse=grass it's something I'd recommend avoiding. If the park is predominantly grass then put surface=grass on the main park, and ensure that surface is tagged on other park features (paths etc). If it is a wide mix of surfaces then it gets more complicated, and I don't believe there is a single good solution. One example might be the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in East London which has been mapped in some detail.

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answered 02 Jan '20, 23:02

SK53's gravatar image

SK53 ♦
accept rate: 22%

Why do you recommend to avoid to map the grassy areas as landuse=grass? Personally, I want to know whether there are a lot of trees in a park that offer shade during hot days, but likewise, there might be people that want to know whether there are grassy areas (e.g. for relaxing in the sun). So I like it when people map a park in more detail and I try to do it myself too (eg. Park Sorghvliedt )

(03 Jan '20, 05:38) escada

Because landuse grass has way too many meanings. This is probably one situation where I think using a land over=grass would be OK (generally I don't think a land over tag solves any of the problems which it is supposed to it just moved them somewhere else, and creates new ones). The fundamental issues here are: we don't have a good tag vocabulary for different grassy places & other than buildings we don't have a technique for mapping parts of elements).

(03 Jan '20, 07:09) SK53 ♦

There is also landuse=grass.

There is quite some discussion within the community whether that should actually be landcover=grass. The reasoning is that it is not really "use of the land", but rather "the land is covered by". But on the other hand, we should not take the keys of the tags too literally.

The wiki page for leisure=pitch also lists surface as a useful combination. I use surface typically for line features (e.g highways). I would use both landcover and landuse for grass areas inside a park. Typically there will be other surfaces in the park as well (bushes, trees, sand in playground, fine gravel for paths, etc)

So, in conclusion, I think that when there is already a "main"-tag such as highway or leisure, one can use surface. If you only want to map a grass area, use landuse/landcover.

p.s. only landuse=grass gets rendered on the default style

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answered 02 Jan '20, 13:55

escada's gravatar image

accept rate: 21%

edited 02 Jan '20, 13:56

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question asked: 02 Jan '20, 08:50

question was seen: 1,434 times

last updated: 03 Jan '20, 07:09

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