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A system of routes (or bicycle rental stations) typically maintained or designated by a single agency or organization, or for bicycle and walking routes, an indication of the scope of the route.
Group: Properties
Used on these elements
may be used on nodes
may be used on ways
use on areas unspecified
may be used on relations
Documented values: 63
See also
Status: Approved

The network key is used in several tagging schemes for a variety of purposes:

Highway routes

On highway route relations, this key indicates the highway system. Highway systems often have coherent numbering schemes. Some common values are listed at Relation:route#Road routes and Category:En tag descriptions for key "network".

In many countries, the most common network values are xy:national and xy:regional, where xy is a two-letter ISO country code.

In the United States, Canada, Brazil, Italy, and India, most network values for highway routes follow a hierarchical, colon-delimited scheme. Codes are preferred to spelled-out names where available. For example, network=US:TX:FM corresponds to Texas' statewide Farm to Market network; network=US:NY:Onondaga is for county routes in Onondaga County, New York; and network=US:OH:MED:Harrisville is for township routes in Harrisville Township, Medina County, Ohio.

The OpenStreetMap Foundation's United States chapter hosts a Shield Renderer, based on the Standard stylesheet, that displays accurate route markers based on the network key on route relations. There is a summary of supported networks, and you can help add support for additional networks (see the README). It is hoped that the Standard stylesheet will someday adopt network-based route shields.

Public transit routes

On route relations for bus, railway, and tram service routes, this key indicates the bus system, if applicable. Network values are generally abbreviated.

Bicycle and hiking routes

On route relations tagged with type=route and route=bicycle or route=hiking, this key indicates the scope of the route. For example, a national cycling network is network=ncn while a national hiking trail network is network=nwn. See Cycle routes and Walking routes for lists of possible values.

Due to the use of generic "lcn", "rcn", "ncn", and "icn" network values in cycle route relations, a cycle_network=* tag is also in use in places that require more granular network distinctions, such as in the United States.


In conjunction with amenity=bicycle_rental or amenity=atm, this key identifies an organization or brand that operates a similar amenity in various other locations. For example, a bicycle rental station in London may belong to the "Barclays Cycle Hire" network. An ATM may belong to a network shared among many banks.

Other uses

This key is also used in the following proposals: