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Public-images-osm logo.svg railway = station
Paddington Station.jpg
A railway station
Used on these elements
may be used on nodes
should not be used on ways
may be used on areas
use on relations unspecified
Useful combination
Status: Unspecified

Railway stations (including main line, light rail, subway, etc.) are places where customers can access railway services. For simple station a railway=station node with the railway track itself can be used; for larger stations with multiple platforms and tracks and other facilities the tag can be used on an area.

You can instead use the new public transport tag public_transport=station.

How to map


  • For simple modeling of simple stations with a single track (or one in each direction) just add a node with railway=station and name=* at an appropriate point on the railway (tagged railway=rail, railway=subway etc).
  • For complex or larger stations it is often best to create a node within the main concourse area and use a public_transport=stop_area to associate this with the rest of the elements of the station.
  • Some mappers prefer to create an area encompassing the land used for passenger services (including any concourse, platforms and associated tracks) and tag this as a station, arguing that a polygon contains more information than an more or less arbitrarily placed node.
    Currently the disadvantage with this approach is that without further refinement the name will be positioned in the centroid for the area which is often within the platform area for a terminus station which is not the place people using the station will find most helpful.
    Moreover route relations require to be linked to nodes rather than areas and cannot be used with this approach. This is now done with a node tagged as public_transport=stop_position and/or railway=stop, see below.
Associated tags
Related elements

Things to avoid

  • There should only be a single railway=station tag for each station. Where there are multiple nodes for a single station then consider converting the station to the area format and moving the relevant tags (including the name etc) to this area and remove the station tag from all the existing 'station' nodes.
Where a mainline station and metro station (or other railway like station) are physically connected, consider if they should be modeled as separate stations or as a single station. The associated Wikipedia article for the facilities might assist with the decision. If the facilities are run by separate organisations (for example a heritage station next to a mainline station) then it is probably better to map them using two separate railway=station tags.

See also

  • public_transport=station - for the new tagging scheme for stations.
  • railway=halt - to tag a smaller station.
  • building=train_station - useful to map the station building itself, note, that sometimes railway terminal can have name, different from name of railway station - be accurate in such cases, when adding names tags. Name of railway station should be added to railway=station object, name of railway terminal - to buidling=train_station object.
  • railway=subway_entrance - to go into a subway station.
  • railway=platform - to map individual platforms in the station.


Picture/Description Tags Mapnik
London Victoria 2005-10-24 01.jpg railway=station
name=London Victoria
together with an area
name=London Victoria
Mapnik railway station.png

See London Victoria Station for reference. The Gare du Nord, in Paris also applies this model (with references to various networks for long distance lines, high-speed lines, regional commuter trains and subways).

Related terms: <stop> <terminal> <station>