|Identifies which branch of a brand or chain this object represents, or controversially the name of a branch railway.|
|Used on these elements|
|Status: in use|
|Tools for this tag|
The key branch=* has been used for 2 purposes: 1) For the name of a branch location of a brand or chain, such as a shop, bank, or fast food restaurant. 2) For the name of a branch railway: however, this usage is consider incorrect by some mappers.
- name=* should hold what can be physically observed on signs at the individual branch.
- Also see operator=*
This page previously proposed: "For smaller towns with only one branch, give the name of the town. For cities with multiple branches, give the name of a neighborhood, street or intersection. Note that this is often both less complex than and different from the address."
However, OpenStreetMap follows the on-the-ground principle: we map what features are called locally, usually indicated by signs or other verifiable evidence. Do not invent a branch name which is not used locally, outside of OpenStreetMap.
2) Added to a way tagged also with railway=* to specify the name of a branch. See also ref=* and name=*, which are more commonly used for this purpose, and the similar tag line=* which is also controversial.
As of 2020, this key is used on many railway=* ways to indicate branch line names. These may be cases where name=* needs to be moved to operator=* and branch=* moved to name=*. It may also be more appropriate to create a route relation with route=railway to map the branch or line. (See OpenRailwayMap/Tagging.)
1) name=Waitrose; shop=supermarket; branch="Canary Wharf": https://www.openstreetmap.org/node/1708718478
2) name=Кругобайкальская железная дорога; branch=В-СИБ; name:en=Circum-Baikal railway; operator=ОАО "РЖД"; railway=rail; usage=branch; https://www.openstreetmap.org/way/314081392