|This article's factual accuracy is disputed. Please see the relevant discussion on the talk page.|
|leisure = park|
|A park, usually urban (municipal).|
|Used on these elements|
|Status: de facto|
|Tools for this tag|
A park is an area of open space for recreational use, usually designed and in semi-natural state with grassy areas, trees and bushes. Parks are usually urban, but not always; there are some rural parks. Parks are smaller than their hosting city or town, being fully contained within them. Even though parks are typically open to the public, they can be fenced off, temporarily closed (like at night time) or open only to certain people (e.g. homeowners, residents).
This tag is intended for (usually urban) parks with managed greenery, located within settlements and nearly always open to general public. Such an area may be known also as metropolitan park, municipal park (North America) or public park, public open space, or municipal gardens (UK). They are largely a "human-sculpted landscape." Note that there are also areas called "national parks," "landscape parks," or similar that may be shortened to "park." Such large, national-level (and state- and provincial-level in North America) parks not so designed and manicured, but rather left in a more wild and natural state should not get this tag, instead, use another tag like boundary=national_park; see below.
How to Map
Ways (highway=path or highway=footway) leading into a park from a road, should always be connected to the road for routing purposes. It's debatable whether they should connect to the park area with a shared node, or cross over the polygon without connecting.
Lakes and forests in a park belong to it, so don't use separate multipolygon elements to exclude them!
Parks may contain one or more leisure=pitch, which should be tagged separately. Please include a sport=* tag (or sport=multi if appropriate). You might also include a surface=* or lit=yes tags, if appropriate. (Public) golf courses inside of parks should get leisure=golf_course.
If it helps to clarify who operates and/or owns the park, you may add an operator=* and/or owner=* tag(s) with the appropriate value(s). If the park is clearly "open to the public," such extra tagging usually isn't necessary. Rarely, some parks are indeed "private" (e.g. a residential homeowners association) or are only open to residents of the host city (e.g. Foothills Park in Palo Alto, California). A correct value (sometimes "private," sometimes "permissive") on an additional access=* tag suffices in these cases.
Many parks are "always open," but some do close (often at night, or seasonally during cold weather). If you know when a park is closed, tag it with key opening_hours=*.
If there is a fence or wall that substantially surrounds the park (or significant parts of it), use barrier=fence (or wall). Should you enter these, it is important to tag the entrances and exits with barrier=gate or entrance=*.
In cases where it is currently unfeasible to map park as an area it is possible to map it as a node and later map it as an area.
Mapping history in the USA
For most of OSM's history in the USA, due to American English usage of "park" as "a large area of land kept in its natural state for public recreational use," this tag is thusly found also on many areas that are "national parks", "landscape parks" and similar. While this better (though slowly) sorts itself out, the wider world should understand this tag's regional prevalence on more than "small urban manicured green spaces," as in North America it is also applied to beaches, campgrounds and other public recreation areas (which can be desert, alpine, wooded...), many of which are large and less urban. Some are tagged both leisure=park and boundary=national_park, which does not seem contradictory to many Americans. Again, this (slowly) resolves (especially in California, where the ill-defined park:type=* was often used as a crutch), so it is likely this paragraph will be deleted as USA park tagging hews more closely to the semantics of leisure=park (and other parks) defined here. How that unfolds and how long that takes remain to be seen.
Parks render as light-green in Mapnik, Carto, Cycle Map, Transport Map and many other renderers, "covering" the entire (multi)polygon, unless there are additional highways or polygons inside of the park (e.g. leisure=pitch, amenity=parking, natural=water).
The normal view of a park is a green area within or near a city or town. Parks in isolated, rural locations covering large, usually wild areas (called "National Park" or "Landscape Park" for example) are a different matter. The tags boundary=national_park, leisure=nature_reserve or perhaps boundary=protected_area should be used instead, not this leisure=park tag. Here is the example of Yosemite National Park in the USA, not tagged leisure=park.
Possible Tagging Mistakes
- on Wikipedia
- boundary=national_park - large, government-decreed area for human recreation and protection of environment or cultural heritage
- leisure=nature_reserve - for wildlife or geological / special interest features, managed for conservation, study, research opportunities
- boundary=protected_area - includes wilderness, marine protection areas, heritage sites and similar areas
- place=square - a town square, typically crossed by streets, also pedestrian areas or rarely green areas
- landuse=recreation_ground - an open green space for general recreation (can be public or private)
- landuse=village_green - a distinctive part of a village centre
- landuse=grass - a smaller area of mown and managed grass
- leisure=garden - a place where flowers and other plants are grown
- tourism=theme_park - an amusement park where entertainment is provided by rides, game concessions, etc.
- "urban park" is not restricting its location to big cities. leisure=park may be also in small town and in villages or in rare cases even outside settlements
- synonyms from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urban_park - note that as usual OSM definition may be not match Wikipedia definition, though as of April 2019 this entry matches leisure=park nearly exactly
- Apple MacOS X Mojave Dictionary (US English), "park," (noun) Definition 1 (US variant)