Proposed features/Usage Frequency
|Status:||Draft (under way)|
|Tagging:||usage_frequency=very_high, high, medium, low, very_low|
|Definition:||Relative measure how frequently a way is used|
This proposal has draft status. Everyone can contribute and improve it.
A relative measure how frequently a way (highway, railway, ferry route, aerialway etc.) is used.
When out in the countryside, I realized that some paths are barely usable any more, because of grown vegetation. The same can even occur to paved tracks. I also sometimes wondered “If I suffered an emergency here, when would I be found?” Reading though some of the proposals (in particular pathtype), and the related discussion, I figured that a tag stating the usage frequency is missing. It could answer a lot of questions
- How likely is this path still passable?
- How likely would I be found there, in time, in case of an emergency?
- Which of the two ways through the dessert is safer? (Probably the frequently used one, besides all the other precautions.)
- How likely will other road users slow me down on this particular road?
This tag can apply to any highway, railway, ferry route, aerialway etc.
*This is a relative measure that takes into account region and type of way. It is not a physical or absolute measure. A 'medium' motorway carries much more traffic than a 'medium' path. A 'medium' path in Western Europe might be something different than a 'medium' path in a rural part of Africa. Before tagging a path with usage_frequency=very_high, ask yourself the question: Would a local knowledgeable person really say "This is a heavily used road"? However, 'very high' does not mean 'local maximum'. There might well be regions without any heavily used roads, for instance.
Routers might prefer medium ways over 'very high' and 'very low' ways because of the reasons mentioned above.
- For highways/tracks/paths, there is certain correlation with track_type=* (that was intended for tracks but is now applied to many other ways). The more frequently used a track is, the more likely it is to be well maintained and have a solid surface. In the woods, a path with soft surface is probably less used. Still, a surface=asphalt path might still be usage_frequency=very_low.
The meaning of this tag could be extended to points. A rarely used bench, for instance, is more likely to be dirty. A heavily used parking lot may not often hold free places. And so on.
Please comment on the discussion page.