Key:abandoned

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Public-images-osm logo.svg abandoned
Abandoned-shop-arty.JPG
Description
Namespace for features that have been abandoned by their owner, but which are still useful for navigation and visible in the landscape. Immediate reuse is not planned, and they may have fallen into disrepair.
Group: Lifecycle
Used on these elements
may be used on nodes
may be used on ways
may be used on areas
use on relations unspecified
Documented values: 3
See also
disused=*
Status: In use

Description

The abandoned: namespace prefix can be added to tags that relate to features that have fallen into serious disrepair and which could only be put back into operation with expensive effort. Such features will still have some physical form reflective of their former use visible in the landscape.

For features which might be returned to use without significant repair efforts, see Key:disused. Use of abandoned as a simple tag is now discouraged (for example abandoned=yes).

How to tag

Add the namespace "abandoned:" to all keys which are no longer relevant to the current state of an object. You should treat all the tags on an object as a set of facts about the object, and prefix the keys of those facts which are no longer true as a result of the abandonment. For example, an abandoned shop which still carries a name sign might be tagged as

name=Holby Tool Supplies
abandoned:shop=tools

which makes it unavailable to programs which locate shops, and unlikely to be displayed as a shop in any default renderings. The name is still relevant, and will still be searchable. If the shop is repaired and reopened, it's a simple matter to undo the prefixing.

Examples

Image Tags Description
Abandoned-shop.jpg abandoned:shop=bicycle
building=yes
old_name=The little bike repair shop
Derelict bike repair shop that can't be brought back into use easily. It's still a building, however: most of the roof's still on, and the walls are standing. The tagging reflects its former use, and the fact it's still a building.
SubsidedRoad.jpg abandoned:highway=unclassified
abandoned:ref=A6187
highway=path
name=The old road
Subsided former turnpike road in Derbyshire, UK, abandoned in the 1970s as a result of a landslide. Still somewhat passable on foot and by bicycle, so it gains a (new, different) highway tag, and loses its former reference number.
Abandoned railway line.jpg railway=abandoned
name=The old name
abandoned rails; track has been removed and the line may have been reused or left to decay

Former use (as a simple tag)

Using abandoned=yes as a simple tag is now deprecated, but there are many uses of it in the database still. It was used for the same purpose as described above, but the syntax was unhelpful because automated consumers of the data would have had to be rewritten. This, in practice, has not happened. The former notes still apply:

  • Initially, a simple feature such as a building that fell into decay might have been tagged with building=yes + abandoned=yes.
  • This was considered problematic because for more complex features with multiple tags it was sometimes unclear which tags were still relevant, and which were not. For example, consider an object tagged with railway=rail + abandoned=yes + highway=track + surface=paved. Does the abandoned=yes tag refer here to the railway, the highway, or both? Does it also refer to the surface tag?
  • It's also problematic that automated data consumers which don't know about the abandoned=yes tag would need to be rewritten (and it's not at all clear about what to do).
  • Therefore, you must also make any tags which no longer have current meaning as a result of the abandonment unavailable to software which doesn't know about the abandoned=yes tag. This can be done by prefixing their keys with the namespace abandoned: — see the examples.

Updating older tagging

Uses of the simple tag should ideally be updated as follows:

Older scheme (deprecated) Intermediate scheme (discouraged) Current scheme (recommended)
amenity=shop
building=yes
name=The little bike repair shop
abandoned=yes
abandoned:amenity=shop
building=yes
name=The little bike repair shop
abandoned=yes
abandoned:amenity=shop
building=yes
name=The little bike repair shop
abandoned=yes
ref=A6187
highway=unclassified
name=The old road
abandoned=yes
abandoned:highway=unclassified
abandoned:ref=A6187
highway=path
name=The old road
abandoned:highway=unclassified
abandoned:ref=A6187
highway=path
name=The old road
  • The name and building-nature of the first example are still relevant, so those keys don't get namespaced.
  • For the road, the newer schemes allow a new use as a path to be expressed.
  • It's now suggested to remove the abandoned=yes too.

See also

Related keys and tags