Talk:Tag:highway=mini roundabout

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Does this not make more sense to be junction=mini_roundabout? -- Milliams 20:13, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

+1 --Gorm 19:42, 3 July 2010 (UTC)
Or even better: Just junction=roundabout. Most regular size roundabouts are drawn as ways tagged with this already. If you just tag a node with it, its a mini roundabout. Easy. --Gorm 23:15, 3 November 2010 (UTC)
+1 I want to tag a big mini_roundabout (roundabout with a driveable center) as a way (not as a node). -- MasiMaster 00:32, 23 May 2012 (BST)
Shouldn't you just be using area=yes? --Panther37 02:30, 23 May 2012 (BST)
The problem is, that highway=mini_roundabout overwrites the original highwaytag i.e. *=residential/tertiary, if we are using it as a (closed) way. -- MasiMaster 16:33, 23 May 2012 (BST)
Wouldn't highway=residential, junction=roundabout, area=yes work? It doesn't specifically call out a mini_roundabout, but it is implied. --Panther37 22:16, 23 May 2012 (BST)


I use this tag a lot for tagging a highway=turning_circle that has an island in it. I wish there was a better way to tag it. --Panther37 01:38, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

Please don't do that! Either map the loop of road if it's large enough (e.g., or use highway=turning_circle and just ignore the island if it's really too small. I wouldn't consider that an incorrect use of the tag, and certainly better than tagging it as a mini-roundabout. Jonathan Bennett 17:24, 14 March 2011 (UTC)
When I read the turning_circle discussion, at the bottom under "What is the difference with a mini_roundabout?" it states that a turning circle does not have anything in the middle. I am thinking of starting to tag these as highway=turning_circle, barrier=island or highway=turning_circle, traffic_calming=chicane. I map neighborhoods, like this one, all of the time in Melbourne and Palm Bay, FL. I'm not going to map out every single one of these. They all get one node. --Panther37 01:21, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
Yes -- as I said at the time: Is the feature on the ground complex and large enough to map using a looped way? If so, use one. If not, use highway=turning_circle. Jonathan Bennett 08:19, 16 March 2011 (UTC)
This has been discussed on the tagging list (and possibly/probably others) a number of times. Turning circles do _not_ have an island in the middle but are wide open allowing e.g. larger vehicles to turn. Turning circles with something in the middle -- or that are actually "turning loops" and someone wants to tag as nodes should (IMO) definitely have either some additional tag as Panther37 suggests above or, perhaps, a tag such as highway=turning_loop? --JaakkoH 00:04, 11 May 2012 (BST)

mini roundabouts which are not traversable

See also the related tagging@osm discussion: and talk-us:

It's probably true to say that highway=mini_roundabout is also frequently used for small roundabouts which are not traversable (some kind of lump or curb in the middle) But is that just a mapping mistake? Is it "erroneously" used in this manner? ...Discuss -- Harry Wood 16:32, 10 May 2012 (BST)

I've invited the recent editors here for discussion. I hope they'll turn up. We need to

  • Sort out and clarify the docs.
  • Explicitly state that if you can't drive over the middle, it isn't a mini-roundabout and junction=roundabout should be used instead.
  • Explain that the docs have been unclear and unhelpful and for how long. IMO the concept that the things are traversible predates OSM, and it's always driven my mapping (here in the UK, where we have lots of the things).

--achadwick 16:52, 10 May 2012 (BST)

We need to do no such thing. --NE2 16:58, 10 May 2012 (BST)
We do, but I should have clarified that is an In My Humble Opinion right there. --achadwick 17:56, 10 May 2012 (BST)

We should probably avoid the use of the word erroneous. There are a few issues here:

  1. Many aren't familiar with the technical definition of mini-roundabout (esp. in the US, I initially misused the tag myself for a while). Hopefully my edits to the first sentence and paragraph have made this clear.
  2. People are put off by the need to draw a full way for such a small feature, and whether or not they know of the consensus definition of mini_roundabout they use it because it's easy. For this we should propose another tag for small roundabouts tagged on nodes, adding an optional tag to highway=mini_roundabout such as traversable=no, or modify the definition of junction=roundabout so that it can be applied to nodes.
  3. Letting data consumers know that these issues exist, and should be cautious about making assumptions.

And NE2, please be constructive with your comments. -- Joshdoe 17:01, 10 May 2012 (BST)

Constructive? What's constructive about someone taking it upon themselves to play mediator and start by saying that we need to agree that one common tagging is wrong? --NE2 17:05, 10 May 2012 (BST)
Sorry for that, I suppose we should take a step back. I think we should get a handle on how common the non-traversable tagging has been. Since the vast majority of your edits have been within the US, I'll assume your understanding of common usage is limited to the US; please correct me if I'm wrong. Do we have users from other countries which see this is in common use? There are about 40k uses of this tag, so we could take a random sampling and get some sense of its usage. -- Joshdoe 17:17, 10 May 2012 (BST)

I'll rephrase. It is my position that roundabouts whose centre cannot be driven over sensibly are not mini-roundabouts by definition, guided by the very first revision of this page dated November 1, 2007 which stated explicitly the lack of a central island and the small size. I'm also guided by UK usage which is exactly this, and Wikipedia currently backs me up (FWIW!). The word "usually" crept in in January 11, 2009, and really I think it should be done away with in future revisions.

I think I'm right in saying that your position, NE2, is that because the docs have been confusing users by vague wording, usage has sprung up in the US in particular and possibly elsewhere wherein it's used for roundabouts with central islands. And that therefore the docs should reflect this. You may have a point.

What I'd really like to see in order for me to change my position is the actual numbers based on small samplings of different areas as Joshdoe suggests, and a great many more traversables than nontraversables created or retagged at points in the timeline where the wiki docs have used the vague wording. However I'm not sure how we'd distinguish the traversable case from the non-traversable one; we'll probably have to restrict to areas with good Bing imagery. Hmm.

--achadwick 17:56, 10 May 2012 (BST)

My position is that mini_roundabout is not necessarily a "mini-roundabout" but a more generic "miniature roundabout". --NE2 18:06, 10 May 2012 (BST)
Then you have my apologies for the mischaracterization of your opinion. Sorry, I should have read the thread and the edits more carefully and I will try to do so in future. However I fear your preferred definition for the tag still just raises more vagueness without more work. --achadwick 19:00, 10 May 2012 (BST)
From a quick unscientifically-randomish review of nodes tagged as highway=mini_roundabout, the majority in the United States are NOT traversable (thanks to excellent Bing imagery), while I can't tell for other areas of the world. For those interested, you can download all current nodes as a zipped OSM file (, and some quick stats: 39,923 total nodes, with top users being Gregory Williams (3226), westendguy (1326), woodpeck_fixbot (813), user_5121 (659), Dr Kludge (543), mackerski (396), NE2 (348), NicRoets (306), Dion Dock (288), UniEagle (287). -- Joshdoe 18:28, 10 May 2012 (BST)
Thanks! I'll have a scan of it when I have a mo. If your analysis is right, then one wonders how it's got(ten) that way in the US. Bad imports? (...that usual US-OSM bogeyman) Either way, I'd like to avoid a situation where new users have to bung a lot of extra tags on really very trivial elements, like the former silliness about direction=*. Perhaps I could appeal to the notion that the assumed form of the thing can be inferred from local context as well as the direction? After all, driving across the middle should be covered by traffic laws where mini-roundabouts (or "those things people call mini(ature) roundabouts") actually exist.
If we can put the US situation down to a small number of strange imports, then just document it as an acknowledged but, in reality, erroneous situation and tell users to do it as before.
--achadwick 19:00, 10 May 2012 (BST)
I know of no import that included roundabout nodes. --NE2 19:11, 10 May 2012 (BST)
Too much to hope for there, I guess. --achadwick 19:40, 10 May 2012 (BST)

I wrote a bit of code for visually classifying all those nodes: , and there's some sample output in there as well. Proper analysis later, and it's somewhat subjective anyway, but there's a roughly 20:23:30 split between "really a turning circle" : "really a solid-centred roundabout" : "actually a flat mini-roundabout you can drive over" in the classifiable and not insanely wrong subset of my initial sampling. Much flatter than I thought. It'd be brilliant if others could repeat the test with Josh's data, ideally with biggish sample sizes. --achadwick 22:52, 10 May 2012 (BST)

Very cool, I'll have to try it out. I've found the TODO list plugin for JOSM to be very useful for a similar task, we just need to enhance the plugin to provide more than just Pass and Mark, perhaps settings flags or adding objects to a "bin" for later selection and counting/editing. -- Joshdoe 05:08, 11 May 2012 (BST)

The mini_roundabout tag is used for different things in different countries. Wether it is used in the US correctly or not is doubtful. Why can't we all just come up with a miniature roundabout or single node roundabout tag? I started using mini_roundabout just like NE2 and other US mappers. Then I changed all 423 of them to highway=turning_circle, traffic_calming=island. Can we just make up a new tag and mass change all of the in the US? --Panther37 02:16, 11 May 2012 (BST)

I did the same thing, including converting all my (mis-)edits. I don't think we should do a mass change however, since from the several hundred I've changed on the east coast there's quite a bit of variety. It shouldn't be too painful to work our way through all the nodes in the US. And I'm not sure I like traffic_calming=island, not that I like the junction=roundabout+note=turning_loop that I'm using (since it's not really a junction, though that might be arguable if driveways connect to it). -- Joshdoe 05:08, 11 May 2012 (BST)
traffic_calming=island could really be any tag that signifies there is something permanent in the road that is not crossable by motor vehicles. I thought that made sense because it is similar to traffic_calming=chicane where the feature could slow traffic, but wouldn't stop it. If anyone can come up with some better tag that we can just add to a turning circle or mini_roundabout, I'll back that too. --Panther37 06:52, 12 May 2012 (BST)

Note to data consumers

"Due to a lack of clarity in the documentation for several years, smaller roundabouts or turning loops have often been tagged with highway=mini_roundabout, rather than using junction=roundabout or highway=turning_loop. Data consumers therefore should be cautious to assume the center of a junction tagged with highway=mini_roundabout can be traversed by large vehicles, especially if the tag was added before June 2012."

- I feel like this should say that this APPLIES or MOST LIKELY APPLIES to certain areas. Then a list of these areas should be provided. Excluding Michigan and Maryland, mini roundabouts in the United States are EXTREMELY rare. I'm guessing this is the case with most of North and South America.

Fix Action

I don 't see why we can't fix this issue. I'm sure we can make a program that finds all highway=mini_roundabout, check to see if it is in an excluded state or area. Then see if it is a node, segment or area.

If Mf node.svg, change it to highway=unknown_roundabout (or some other specific tag just for this action.)

If Mf node.svg, and traffic_calming=*, If connected to multiple Mf way.svg, add junction=roundabout & direction=(standard roundabout direction for area)

If Mf node.svg, and connected to only one Mf way.svg, add unknown_roundabout=turning (Consider checking traffic_calming= to determine if turning_loop or turning_circle)

If Mf area.svg, then change it to highway=turning_circle

If Mf closed way.svg, then change it to junction=roundabout

--Panther37 (talk) 05:31, 20 February 2015 (UTC)