Why not ask your question on the new OpenStreetMap Community Forum?

A disused railway bridge crossing a canal is showing in the "edit layer" but isn't showing on OpenStreetMap itself. The bridge is intact and still has rails along its length but the railway line itself was abandonned about 25 years ago to my knowledge. How do I get the bridge to show up on OpenStreetMap?

asked 31 May '21, 05:02

Terry's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%


Can you provide a link to the object or the map region? So that someone can take a look if the tags are correct.

(31 May '21, 08:18) scai ♦

Not sure whether above link is what you require as still very much a novice! The bridge now shows up at certain zoom levels so maybe I was a little impatient. I did wait an hour or so before asking the question as nothing had changed. The bridge is to the left of Langley Green railway station.

(31 May '21, 20:34) Terry
(31 May '21, 21:06) TZorn

There's just the one bridge carrying the two rails. There is no gap in the middle of the bridge so I'm still unsure whether it's depicted correctly.

(31 May '21, 23:47) Terry

There are two things you can do to model bridges. The standard one is to model a highway or railway and add a tag bridge=yes. That is probably what has been done in your case.

The other way is mapping the bridge structure itself by man_made=bridge. The bridge gets modeled additionally to the highway or railway. In many cases mapping the man_made=bridge is omitted but in your case where the railway is razed but the bridge itself not it makes sense to map it. Have a look at the linked wiki page and hwo to do it.

If you share the link to the bridge in question we can also have a look if something else needs to be considered.

permanent link

answered 31 May '21, 08:59

TZorn's gravatar image

accept rate: 15%

Thank you for your help and advice. I did change the tag from the previous railway=abandoned to railway=disused which I think has done the trick.

As replied to scai above https://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=17/52.49355/-2.00794 Not sure whether above link is what you require as still very much a novice! The bridge now shows up at certain zoom levels so maybe I was a little impatient. I did wait an hour or so before asking the question as nothing had changed. The bridge is to the left of Langley Green railway station.

(31 May '21, 20:44) Terry

(as a couple of other people have already said) you need to map the bridge structure itself by man_made=bridge. Draw the bridge structure (not the rails) like https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/656183412 .

(01 Jun '21, 00:19) SomeoneElse ♦

Ah yes. Added Bridge Area and man_made=bridge. Requested review. Thanks for your help.

(01 Jun '21, 01:01) Terry

It looks almost good now. A few hints, tough:

Common practice is to connect the outline of the bridge and the end points of the railway lines running over it with a shared node.

You have connected the north-western corner of the bridge to a fence which is likely running under the bridge (not visible on the aerials). Likewise you have connected the south-western corner with a fence and a landuse area. This is generally not recommended. You can unconnect the objects by right-clicking on the connected nodes and chose the proper option.

I presume the bridge is pretty much a rectangle in reality. You can right-click on the bridge outline and chose to rectify the angles.

But don't worry. We have all started like this. Once you get the hang of editing it will get much easier and you have to watch out to not getting addicted. :-)

(01 Jun '21, 10:52) TZorn

OMG -there's definitely a lot more to this mapping than I appreciated! Anyway, thanks for your suggestions which I hope I have correctly followed. Perhaps you would let me know.

(01 Jun '21, 13:40) Terry

Looks good. I have now also connected railway and bridge.

(01 Jun '21, 15:05) TZorn

Ah I think I see. When I disconnected the fence node etc I noticed the node colour changed from grey to white. As the 4 nodes on the railway tracks were coloured grey I assumed they had connected sort of automatically when I ran the bridge area line through them. Presumably, these 4 nodes were already coloured grey from joining what was originally the abandoned railway track to the bridge. However, additional connections were required to the Bridge Area (which you have done). Please feel free to correct me if I've misunderstood.

(01 Jun '21, 15:52) Terry

That's correct how you describe it.

(01 Jun '21, 15:56) TZorn

Ok. I think that's it. Thanks so much for your input.

(01 Jun '21, 17:13) Terry
showing 5 of 9 show 4 more comments

You should use railway=disused for rails remaining on top of the trackbed, which is indeed rendered by the OSM Carto style used in the Standard Tile Layer. The "bridge" deck structure itself can be represented by a man_made=bridge.

railway=abandoned is for removed rails with supporting structure remaining, only rendered by OpenRailwayMap.

permanent link

answered 31 May '21, 08:27

Kovoschiz's gravatar image

accept rate: 16%

edited 31 May '21, 08:30

Thank you for replying. You're spot on. I did in fact edit from the railway=abandoned to railway=disused and the bridge does now show at certain zoom levels.

(31 May '21, 20:54) Terry

For completeness, here's how it looks on OpenRailWayMap: https://www.openrailwaymap.org/?style=standard&lat=52.49421299013024&lon=-2.0049619674682617&zoom=15 , and in another map style: https://map.atownsend.org.uk/maps/map/map.html#zoom=21&lat=52.4936983&lon=-2.0079356 (full disclosure - I look after that one).

(31 May '21, 21:32) SomeoneElse ♦

One more thing though - https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/948829119 looks like a duplicate of https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/205261953 and I suspect that https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/948829120 shouldn't be there at all? Also, as previously suggested, drawing in the bridge structure makes sense, like https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/656183412 .

(31 May '21, 21:36) SomeoneElse ♦

All what you state is correct. Naughty me! I made a bit of a hash as I tried to put a bridge deck in but failed and I think only saved part (through inexperience, I hasten to add). There is just a single bridge - no gap in the middle of the rails so views incorrectly on your map https://map.atownsend.org.uk/maps/map/map.html#zoom=21&lat=52.4936983&lon=-2.0079356

(01 Jun '21, 00:04) Terry

Don’t bother/try to make a disused item “show up on OpenStreetMap”. The rendering on the main OSM website does not and cannot show everything in the map database.

If properly tagged, I believe that disused railways will show up on the Open Railway Map.

If you really, really want or need to have disused infrastructure to show up on the main OSM website then a bug report (or probably better a tested change and pull request) to the style maintainers would be the way to go. But don’t be surprised if the request is not implemented: No map can show everything and still be readable so the maintainers have to balance all the conflicting possibilities and may decide that display of disused railway bridges are not important to enough users.

permanent link

answered 31 May '21, 06:05

n76's gravatar image

accept rate: 17%

railway=abandoned was rejected for being unclear, among other reasons. https://github.com/gravitystorm/openstreetmap-carto/pull/542

(31 May '21, 08:32) Kovoschiz

To #stf - Thanks for replying. I did think it relevant to show the bridge as people walking the towpath and canal boats do pass under and it seemed an inaccuracy to leave it off the map. The bridge does show on the latest Ordnance Survey map.

(31 May '21, 20:50) Terry
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](http://url.com/ "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: 31 May '21, 05:02

question was seen: 1,070 times

last updated: 01 Jun '21, 17:13

powered by OSQA